* Offer will be 66 pence in cash for each Hansen share
* Hansen's two largest shareholders back offer
* Hansen shares up 94 percent, top gainers in London
* Shares in top shareholder Suzlon rise 2.7 pct in India
(Adds Hansen shareholder comments; Mumbai to dateline)
By Adveith Nair and Prashant Mehra
LONDON/MUMBAI, July 25 Germany's ZF
Friedrichshafen AG is to buy Belgium-based Hansen
Transmissions , which makes gearboxes for wind turbines,
for $725.5 million to consolidate its position in the market for
The offer, pitched at 66 pence in cash for each Hansen
share, values the company at 444.8 million pounds and is at a 96
percent premium to the company's Friday close in London.
"The combination of ZF and Hansen's wind gearbox activities
represents a natural extension of our strategic decision to
enter the growing and exciting field of wind energy," Hans-Georg
Härter, Chief Executive Officer of ZF said on Monday.
ZF, which was founded in 1915 makes everything from
transmissions and steering systems to chassis components and
complete axle systems. The Zeppelin Foundation, administered by
the city of Friedrichshafen, owns 93.8 percent of the company.
ZF said it has received undertakings from Hansen's two
largest shareholders, Indian wind turbine maker Suzlon Energy
and Ecofin, which own about 38.4 percent of the
company's outstanding shares, to accept the offer.
Hansen shares rose 92 percent to 65 pence and were the top
percentage gainers in London.
Suzlon shares rose as much as 5.4 percent. At 0830 GMT, the
stock was up 2.7 percent at 54.35 rupees in a flat Mumbai market
Suzlon has been weighed down by debt worries since it bought
Hansen in 2006 and built up a 91 percent stake in Germany's
REpower RPWGn.DE in the following two years.
"This is in line with our strategy to optimize and
strengthen our balance sheet," Suzlon chairman Tulsi Tanti said
in a statement.
"Suzlon and Hansen have developed a strong partnership on
technology and supply chain...we expect this partnership to
continue and strengthen further over the medium term."
($1 = 0.613 British Pounds)
(Reporting by Adveith Nair in LONDON and Prashant Mehra in
MUMBAI; Editing by Rhys Jones and Jane Merriman)