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Bosch agrees to sell packaging unit to buyout firm CVC

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Bosch agrees to sell packaging unit to buyout firm CVC
FILE PHOTO: Bosch parking deck is pictured near airport in Stuttgart, Germany, February 2, 2017. REUTERS/Michaela Rehle   -   Copyright  Michaela Rehle(Reuters)
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FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Car parts maker Bosch has agreed to sell its packaging machinery business to buyout firm CVC as it seeks to streamline its activities and fund investment in areas such as electric cars and autonomous driving.

While Bosch and CVC said they had agreed not to disclose the purchase price, a person close to the matter said that the deal values the Bosch unit at 850 million euros (£764 million).

The packaging technology firm, along with its pharma and food units, is to remain intact, Bosch and CVC said in a joint statement, adding that the deal is subject to approvals by antitrust and other authorities.

“Together with the management team, we will work to take the business forward in the years ahead, and to make it even more competitive,” CVC Managing Partner Alexander Dibelius said.

The investor beat the competition including Italian engineering group Coesia, German industrial holding Koerber as well as private equity firms KKR and Bain in a process launched more than a year ago.

The packaging industry has seen a wave of consolidation in recent years, with private equity groups being drawn to the stable cash flows of the firms that tend to grow in line with gross domestic product and have so far seen limited impact from the debate about plastic pollution in the world’s oceans.

The car industry and its suppliers, for their part, have come under pressure to accelerate investment in electric and self-driving vehicle technologies, following a regulatory crackdown on diesel.

(Reporting by Arno Schuetze; Editing by Edward Taylor and Michelle Martin)

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