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            november 21, 2019

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Knorr-Bremse withdraws its Offer for Haldex and terminates merger clearance process


Knorr-Bremse AG withdraws its offer to all shareholders of Haldex AB and abandons the proposed business combination. Knorr-Bremse will also not continue the merger clearance process.
Knorr-Bremse has made this decision based on a careful assessment of all options and under consideration of the interests of all stakeholders following the resolution of the Swedish Securities Council (“SSC”). On 7 September 2017 the SSC had announced not to permit an extension of the current acceptance period whereby the Offer would lapse on 26 September 2017. Knorr-Bremse also carefully evaluated the SSC’s indication to permit Knorr-Bremse to revert with a new offer within three weeks of merger clearance.
For the successful completion of the merger clearance process, the support and cooperation of Haldex and its Board, which surprisingly have been withdrawn, are indispensable and the key prerequisite. After the SSC decision, Knorr-Bremse had again reached out to the Haldex' Board with a request for necessary support and offered to explain the next steps in the merger clearance process and updated plans for the proposed combination. The Haldex Board has, however, denied this request for support and cooperation. The Haldex Board thereby continues to act against the majority vote of the extraordinary general meeting of Haldex, where shareholders had decided that Haldex is to support and cooperate with Knorr-Bremse in the merger clearance process.
Without the cooperation and support of Haldex, merger clearance cannot be obtained. Completion of the Offer was conditional upon, inter alia, receipt of all necessary clearances from authorities on terms acceptable to Knorr-Bremse as well as Haldex not taking any measures that were likely to impair the prerequisites for implementing the Offer. These Offer conditions have not been met now and will clearly not be met within the acceptance period. Therefore, Knorr-Bremse withdraws the Offer and must terminate the merger clearance process.
“We made an attractive offer, had convincing arguments and strong support by shareholders. We are convinced that the proposed combination would have been in the best interest of both companies as well as the shareholders of Haldex. Our approach was always, for sure, a friendly takeover. All our attempts to reach out to Haldex have, however, been rejected and the Board blocks to jointly continue and create a new driving force in the commercial vehicle sector.” said Klaus Deller, Chairman of the Executive Board of Knorr-Bremse AG. “It is thus a consequent step to withdraw the Offer and move on. The combination of Haldex and Knorr-Bremse would have been our preferred option which was clearly backed by the shareholders of Haldex. However, we will now pursue alternatives. With respect to our shareholding in Haldex we will act as a responsible shareholder and use all our options now at hand in the best interest of the company and Knorr-Bremse.”
The shares that have been tendered in the Offer will hence not be acquired by Knorr-Bremse. The shares will remain in the possession of the shareholders who do not have to take any actions.
Knorr-Bremse operates on the basis of a proven strategy that is fully geared towards profitable growth and at strengthening its footprint in the global commercial vehicle sector. Knorr-Bremse works at further expanding its offering for system solutions for which there is increasing customer demand. In addition, Knorr-Bremse will continue to put a strong focus on efficiency as well as safety and further drive innovation to support the equipment of commercial vehicles with more autonomous driving functions. Since 2012 Knorr-Bremse has invested around 6% of its annual sales in Research and Development. Already last fall Knorr-Bremse presented its solutions for autonomous yard manoeuvring and is in intensive talks with various customers. In addition, Knorr-Bremse will continue to push inorganic growth by screening the market for suitable bolt-on acquisitions.

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