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Potential buyers look at Cooper-Standard

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"We've seen interest from potential buyers" of Cooper Tire & Rubber Co.'s Cooper-Standard Automotive Group, says Cooper Chairman, CEO and President Tom Dattilo.

Last month, Cooper revealed it is looking at the possibility of selling Cooper-Standard, which generated revenue of $1.6 billion in 2003.

"We believe that Cooper Tire & Rubber may be best served by dedicating our resources to investing in our tire business and further pursuing global expansion," said Dattilo at the time.

He has not identified potential buyers.

Cooper-Standard, which is based in Novi, Mich., builts fluid handling, body sealing and vibration control systems, maninly for original equipment auto manufacturers.

Cooper-Standard achieved net sales of $497 million during the first quarter of 2004, a 23% increase from Q1 2003 levels and a record for the unit.

"Demand remains strong for key (Cooper-Standard) platforms," says Dattilo.

Cooper Tire & Rubber will continue Cooper-Standard's operations "as usual by seeking new business, developing new products and filling customer orders as needed.

"We have several (new product) projects underway."

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