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Business deals

Nissan cancels $900m sale of battery subsidiary to China's GSR

Deal collapses due to lack of capital at investment fund

AESC produces lithium-ion batteries for the Nissan Leaf.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Nissan Motor announced Monday that the planned sale of its electric-car battery unit to GSR Capital had been canceled, citing a lack of funds on the part of the Chinese investment vehicle.

Nissan said that it had been informed of GSR Capital's circumstances last Friday, when the sale of Automotive Energy Supply Corp. was due to be completed. The exact value of the proposed deal was not disclosed, but was estimated at around 100 billion yen ($903 million).

AESC was founded in 2007 as a joint venture between Nissan and NEC Group, with the automaker holding a 51% share. The company produces lithium-ion batteries for the Leaf, Nissan’s flagship electric car.

Having bought its partner out of the venture, Nissan was planning to sell the entire company to GSR.

NEC has also decided to cancel the sale to GSR of its subsidiary NEC Energy Devices, which supplies battery electrodes to AESC.

Both deals were scheduled for completion at the end of 2017, but the deadline was extended to June 29.

Nissan said that it would announce a new schedule as soon as details could be finalized.

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