BUSINESS SHORTS

Matador in talks with Continental

THE PLANNED capital increase in the joint venture Continental Matador plant, which produces tires for trucks in Púchov in western Slovakia, will significantly increase production capacity, according to the plants' officials.

Both partners, Slovak tire producer Matador Púchov and German car industry supplier Continental, are now negotiating the possible extension of their strategic partnership into the passenger car tire market.

"These negotiations still aren't closed. A final contract between both partners still hasn't been arranged," Matador Group spokesman Dušan Koblišek told the TASR news agency in response to a recent report by a German daily.

According to the daily, Continental wants a majority share in Matador and is willing to pay Sk5.5 billion (€150 million) to get it.

The takeover still has not been approved by Continental's supervisory board. Continental also doesn't want to get involved in Matador's production of other car industry components, such as brakes, because these have nothing to do with Continental's core business.

Matador and Continental have run a joint company in Púchov for seven years. Continental owns 76 percent of the company. They also have a joint venture in Omsk, Russia.

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