Ford Motor Co.’s sale of Hertz Corp.’s car rental unit, which includes its equipment rental division, appears to be close to completion, according to reports last week in the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. However, the newspapers differed as to which buyer is likely to have its bid chosen by the car manufacturer.
The Wall Street Journal reported that a consortium of Clayton Dubilier & Rice and Merrill Lynch & Co.’s global private equity unit would pay Ford between $5.5 billion and $6 billion and assume debt of more than $10 billion. The WSJ cited unnamed sources in reporting for its online edition.
However, The New York Times reported that Ford will recommend to its board that it sell to a group of investors led by the Carlyle Group for more than $10 billion. Ford and Hertz officials declined comment on the reports.
The WSJ report speculated that Clayton Dubilier would likely sell some of Hertz’ operations, such as the equipment rental division.
Park Ridge, N.J.-based Hertz Equipment Rental Corp. is No. 3 on the RER 100, with an estimated 2004 rental volume of about $930 million and estimated total revenue of almost $1.3 billion.