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Cooper continues to shed non-core businesses

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Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. continues to jettison its non-core businesses with the sale of its 25% interest in Rongcheng Chengshan Steel Cord Co. to ArcelatorMittal Wire Drawing Asia Sarl for $7.4 million.

Cooper obtained 25% ownership via its acquisition of 51% of Cooper Chengshan (Shandong) Passenger Tire Co. Ltd. and Cooper Chengshan (Shandong) Tire Co. Ltd., both completed in early 2006.

"We continue to divest our interest in what we consider non-core businesses, which includes the steel cord business," says Cooper CEO and President Roy Armes.

"While it was not considered a core product for Cooper, it did provide a steady supply of quality steel cord to support our Chinese manufacturing facilities.

"This is a continuing effort by Cooper to focus on our core tire manufacturing and marketing efforts."

ArcelatorMittal will supply steel cord to Cooper.

Cooper's sale of its Oliver Rubber Co. division to Michelin North America Inc. was finalized last week. Michelin paid $69 million for the unit.

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