KKR to be preferred bidder for Nissan supplier Calsonic in $3.8 billion deal: Nikkei

KKR & Co (KKR.N) is set to be the preferred bidder to buy Nissan Motor Co supplier Calsonic Kansei Corp (7248.T) in a potential $3.8 billion deal, the Nikkei daily reported on Friday, without citing its sources.

Nissan (7201.T) plans to sell its 41 percent stake in Calsonic and then the U.S. private equity firm would seek the remaining shares from other shareholders, the newspaper said.

A Nissan spokesman said the reports were not based on any announcement by the automaker. A spokeswoman for KKR declined to comment.

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Bain Capital and MBK Partners were also bidding to buy the auto parts maker, which has a market value of about 280 billion yen ($2.7 billion), people with direct knowledge of the matter told Thomson Reuters LPC reported last month.

Trade in Calsonic Kansei was suspended by the Tokyo Stock Exchange on Friday morning. A Calsonic Kansei spokesman said the company had not announced a sale to KKR.

Nissan put its Calsonic stake up for sale this year.

Calsonic specializes in interiors, electronics, air-conditioning units and compressors, and relies on Nissan for about 80 percent of its global sales. This heavy reliance on the Japanese carmaker scared away other global private equity firms, sources have told Reuters.