Polaris Majority Equity in KTM Not an Option
July 28, 2006
Filed under Uncategorized
Polaris Industries Inc. and KTM Power Sports AG announced that they will continue their strategic partnership at an operational and technical level but that they no longer anticipate that Polaris will acquire a majority equity interest in KTM.
On July 19, 2005, the companies announced Polaris purchased approximately a 25 percent interest in KTM and that Polaris and KTM’s largest shareholder, Cross Industries AG, had entered into an option agreement which provided that, under certain conditions in 2007, either Cross could purchase Polaris’ interest in KTM or, alternatively, Polaris could purchase Cross’ majority interest in KTM.
The first phase of the partnership called for each company to be run independently but work on several specific cooperative projects.
“Our teams have worked well together over the past year,” said Tom Tiller, Polaris’ CEO. “The strategic partnership has accomplished a tremendous amount so far and achieved nearly all our goals during the first 12 months of its existence.
“For instance, in February of this year Polaris and KTM entered into a long-term exclusive engine supply agreement for ATV applications and in March of this year KTM became Polaris’ distributor in Germany. Additionally, our co-development projects are progressing nicely and we expect to make an exciting announcement about one of our projects in the near future. These and other joint cooperation projects will continue into the future. I expect the technical cooperation between our companies to continue to be strong in the coming years.”
“We are very pleased with the results of the first phase of the strategic partnership and look forward to continuing the relationship,” said Stefan Pierer, KTM’s CEO. “Nevertheless, Rudolf Knunz (the other principal in Cross) and I have recently informed Polaris of our intention not to sell Cross’ interest in KTM to Polaris. We wish to remain in control of KTM and for KTM to remain an independent company.”
“When we structured Polaris’ path toward complete ownership of KTM as a 2-staged process, we recognized that this was a possible outcome,” Tiller said. “Polaris continues to own a 25 percent equity interest in KTM and we continue to have confidence in the KTM management team and their ability to execute the KTM operational plan.”