Ford Motor Co. will sell its Kwik-Fit European car maintenance and repair business to CVC Capital Partners for about $500 million-less than a third of what it paid for the chain three years ago.
Under the deal, announced Aug. 12, private equity group CVC will form a new company from Kwik-Fit, in which Ford will have a 19-percent stake. The U.S. car maker will post third-quarter charges of about $500 million from the sale, which is due to be completed by year-end, subject to approvals.
Ford bought Kwik-Fit from the business's founder Tom Farmer in April 1999 for $1.6 billion. At the time Ford said it planned to expand the Kwik-Fit concept-selling and installing tires, exhausts and brakes, and deliver quick turnaround at affordable prices-across Europe as part of its plan to become the world's leading supplier of consumer automotive products and services.
Ford said Kwik-Fit operates 2,500 service centers-up from about 1,650 in 1999-and more than 11,000 employees. Sales were $1.1 billion last year.
Ford also has sold Collision Team of America-a U.S.-based chain of collision repair shops-but is no longer trying to find a buyer for Hertz Equipment Rental Corp.