Renault ups stake in Samsung Motors for $54 mln


PARIS, Dec 29 (Reuters) - Renault has exercised an option to buy an additional 10 percent in South Korea's Samsung Motors for 55 billion won ($54.3 million), the French carmaker said on Thursday.

Renault is boosting its stake to 80.1 percent by buying a 10 percent holding from former creditors of Samsung Motors.

"The contract has just been signed. We exercised an option that was part of the original deal in 2000," a spokeswoman said.

Samsung Group [SAGR.UL] owns the remaining 19.9 percent of Renault Samsung Motors Inc. (RSM).

The deal is expected to be closed in about a month.

Renault initially bought a stake in 2000 after the South Korean carmaker had collapsed under debts in 1999.

Chief Executive Carlos Ghosn, who will unveil a strategic plan for Renault on Feb. 9, unveiled plans last month to expand the Korean unit, including a rapid increase in exports from next year and developing a sport utility vehicle by late 2007.



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