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Some JCI employees in Holland will move to Visteon - Jan 14th, 2014 - Local

Mlive - Some Johnson Controls Inc. (JCI) employees at the Holland Technical Center will be transferred to Visteon Corp. as a result a $264 million sale of JCI’s automotive electronics business announced Monday, Jan. 13.

But how many of JCI employees will be included in the deal remains to be seen, according to JCI spokeswoman Mary Kay Dodero.

JCI’s Technical Center at 915 E. 32nd Street employs persons involved in the company’s automotive electronics and interiors business.

“We’re waiting until the transaction is finalized so we know what locations are impacted,” Dodero said. She said those decisions will be made as the transaction proceeds toward a closing in the second quarter.

Randy Thelen, president of the Lakeshore Advantage economic development group for the Holland-Zeeland area, said it’s too early to know how many of the 1,500 JCI workers at the 32nd Street facility will be affected by the sale.

The business to be acquired from Johnson Controls provides automakers with driver information, infotainment, connectivity and body electronics products, according to a Visteon announcement.

The transaction involves about 4,800 employees, including about 1,000 engineers, electronics specialists and designers at seven research and development centers in Europe, North America and Asia.

Visteon spokesman Jim Fisher said the transaction will include some employees at JCI's Technical Center in Holland.

The sale will make Visteon one of the world’s three largest suppliers of vehicle cockpit electronics.

“The combined business will be a $3 billion global electronics enterprise with a No. 2 global position in driver information and above-average growth rates for the segment, supplying nine of the world’s 10 largest vehicle manufacturers,” according to a Visteon announcement.

Visteon, which was spun off from Ford Motor Co. in 2000, is headquartered in Van Buren Township near east of Ann Arbor.

The sale reinforces Visteon’s commitment to cockpit electronics as one of Visteon’s two core businesses, along with Halla Visteon Climate Control, the world’s No. 2 automotive climate control supplier, the announcement said.

"We look forward to continuing on our path of value creation for customers and shareholders by integrating this highly regarded business into the Visteon Electronics family," said Visteon President and CEO Timothy D. Leuliette in a statement.

"This is a strong strategic fit with our existing electronics portfolio and gives us the worldwide scale and cost efficiencies needed to support vehicle manufacturers’ global platforms and programs.

“It also diversifies our electronics customer base, solidifies our already strong global footprint, and brings new technologies, capabilities and outstanding engineers to help grow our business."

The JCI sale of its electronics business follows the sale of its Homelink division to Zeeland-based Gentex Corp. last year. That sale was completed for $700 million.