Kumho looks for buyer of Cooper's stake

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A spokesman for Kumho Tire Co. Inc. has confirmed that Kumho is looking for investors to purchase the 10.7% stake that Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. holds in Kumho. Cooper has been a minority shareholder in Kumho since 2005.

"We met with Kumho earlier this year and discussed a proposal to exercise our put option," says a Cooper spokesperson.

"A the point in time in which we decide to formally exercise our put option, we will do so in strict accordance to the time frame established at the time of purchase. We did not agree to delay the completion of the sale until Kumho was able to find new investors."

The spokesperson also says Cooper is not obligated to find a buyer.

In January 2005, it was announced that Cooper had reached an agreement to acquire nearly 11% of Kumho Tire´s common equity.

"This is a wise investment for us as we begin the process of repositioning (Cooper) after the sale of Cooper-Standard Automotive," said Tom Dattilo, Cooper's chairman, CEO and president at the time.

Cooper had recently completed the sale of its Cooper-Standard division for $1.165 billion.

"We believe it is important for Cooper to form strategic relationships with other strong players in the global tire industry to realize a good return for shareholders and continue our planned growth in products, technology and market share."

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