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Business

Hitachi Koki gearing up for $447m acquisition spree

Japanese power tools maker aims for top three in global market share

TOKYO -- Japanese power tool maker Hitachi Koki will spend up to about 50 billion yen ($447 million) on acquisitions with the aid of U.S. buyout firm and new majority owner Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, aiming to become one of the top three players in the industry worldwide.

The Tokyo-based company's sales totaled 178.7 billion yen in the fiscal year ended in March, putting it among manufacturers roughly tied for fourth in the global power tools market. It is looking to add to its lineup of high-end professional-grade tools by offering mass-market versions via acquisitions.

"We will grow sales 70% to around 300 billion yen in fiscal 2021," predicted President Osami Maehara.

The company plans to expand its network of domestic sales outlets from 39 to between 50 and 60 within three years. This will ease its dependence on dealerships under the umbrella of former parent Hitachi, which account for half of its domestic sales. Industrial conglomerate Hitachi sold its power tools business to KKR in March as part of a wider restructure.

Hitachi Koki is also looking to change its name. "Apart from [Japan] and other markets where the Hitachi brand is strong, we will quickly build up a new brand," said Maehara, who declined to provide a time frame for the move.

(Nikkei)

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