FRANKFURT (Reuters) - China’s Midea Group could reduce its shareholding in German industrial robot maker Kuka following its public tender offer by selling shares or carrying out a capital increase, Kuka Chief Executive Till Reuter said on Wednesday.
The Chinese home appliance maker has about 86 percent of Kuka shares so far and is expected to reach over 90 percent after the offer period expires tonight, he told reporters on a conference call following second-quarter results.
The German government, keen to preserve a national champion in a key industry, had sought a deal to limit Midea’s stake to 49 percent.
But subsequent decisions by major German shareholders Voith and Friedhelm Loh to sell their stakes put that goal out of immediate reach.
Reuter said Kuka and Midea would hold talks in September to discuss how a future shareholder structure could look.
“There are two possibilities: one is for Midea to give up shares... and the second is a capital increase,” he said.
Reporting by Georgina Prodhan; Editing by Maria Sheahan