Johnson Controls International (JCI), the biggest western player in the global battery market has fuelled speculation that it could be preparing to sell its Power Solutions division— essentially all of its lead-acid and lithium business.
And sources have told BBB the most likely buyer will be a Chinese player— perhaps Camel or Chilwee (also known as Chaowei) who both have the financial muscle to pull off such a deal.
Johnson Controls has acquired a 90% share of Colombian battery supplier MAC. JCI has been working with MAC since 2011 when they began a joint venture to produce and sell lead-acid batteries for the Central and South American markets.
Details of the financial terms have not been disclosed but will further strengthen JCI’s position in the continent.
Johnson Controls has announced Alex Molinaroli is to be the company’s President and CEO from October 1st.
Molinaroli, who has been with the company since 1983, will also serve as Chairman of the Board from January 1st 2014, when Stephen Roell will step down.
The new President has said he wants to lessen the company’s business in car parts such as seats, dashboard displays, roof liners and other components. Instead he wants the company to be seen as a multi-industry company by getting into climate-control equipment and systems for hospitals, schools, offices and commercial buildings.
The auto battery business will however remain; the company has announced it is to supply Chevy with AGM batteries for the 2014 Malibu car.
JCI’s battery will go into the stop-start engine marking the first time Chevy has equipped a car with the fuel-saving technology as standard.