Philips to sell major stake in LED, car lighting arm for $3.9 billion

THE HAGUE (AFP) - Dutch electronics giant Philips on Tuesday said it was selling a majority stake in its LED and car lighting arm to a consortium led by China-based GO Scale Capital investment fund in a deal worth US$2.8 billion (S$3.9 billion).

"Philips today announced that it has signed an agreement with a consortium led by GO Scale Capital through which they will acquire an 80.1 per cent interest in Philips' combined LED components and automotive lighting business," the Amsterdam-based Philips said.

"Philips expects to receive cash proceeds, before tax and transaction related costs, of approximately US$2.8 billion (2.5 billion euros)," it said in a statement.

Philips last year announced it would split in two, separating its healthcare-lifestyle arm from its historic lighting section in a move to streamline the 120-year-old business.

After the sale, to be completed in the third quarter of the year, Philips will retain a 19.9 per cent share in the business, Tuesday's statement said.

The new company will be named Lumileds, Philips said.

"We are convinced that together with GO Scale Capital, Lumileds can grow further, attract more customers and increase scale as a stand-alone company," Philips chief executive Frans van Houten said.

Founded in 1891, Philips employs around 112,000 people worldwide.

GO Scale Capital is a new investment fund sponsored by GSR Ventures and Oak Investment Partners with offices in Beijing, Hong Kong and Silicon Valley.

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