The Timken Company today announced it has completed the sale of its automotive steering business, which operates facilities in Watertown, Conn., and Nova Friburgo, Brazil, to DriveSol Worldwide, Inc. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.
"The sale of this business, which has not been profitable in recent quarters, is part of the structural changes we are pursuing to improve our ability to create shareholder value," said Timken President and Chief Executive Officer James W. Griffith.
The steering business employs approximately 600 people at the Watertown plant and about 300 people in Brazil and had 2005 sales of $110 million.
DriveSol, which is an affiliate of Sun Capital Partners, Inc., will continue to manufacture steering tilt shafts, intermediate shafts and steering components at the Watertown plant and steering columns at the Nova Friburgo plant. The products at both facilities are focused on tube forming, coating, painting and precision assembly.
"As a result of our focus on driving innovation in the core areas of friction management and power transmission, we have decided to exit this non- strategic business," said Jacqueline A. Dedo, president of Timken's Automotive Group. "In addition to our previously announced restructuring programs, we are continuing to examine and implement further actions to improve financial performance in our Automotive Group."