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Daimler Declines Geely Offer To Buy Stake, Geely Hopeful Of A Deal: Reuters

German automaker Daimler AG has turned down an offer from China's Geely to take a stake of up to 5 percent through a discounted share placement, Reuters reported Wednesday, citing sources with knowledge of the talks.

At current market prices, the given stake would be worth $4.5 billion. However, Daimler told Geely it was welcome to buy shares in the open market, the report said.

Geely, which also owns Swedish car maker Volvo, is still hoping to secure a deal in some form over the coming weeks, according to the sources.

At Geely's request, both companies held talks in Bejing, in recent weeks.

Geely reportedly is the leading domestic brand in China with a 5 percent market share.

With the requested stake, the Chinese firm would become Daimler's third-largest shareholder behind the Kuwait Investment Authority and BlackRock, who hold 6.8 percent and 6 percent, respectively.

Geely is said to be interested to access Daimler's electric car battery technology and wanted to establish an electric car joint venture in Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province.

Daimler, however, has a long-established joint venture with Chinese carmaker BAIC Motor Corp. The company recently announced plans to invest at least 5 billion yuan or $757 million in electric battery and vehicle production with BAIC in China. The company also has another tie-up with BYD, a Chinese automaker backed by Warren Buffett.

by RTT Staff Writer

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