Haier was founded as Qingdao Refrigerator Co in 1984, although the company’s roots date back to the 1920s. It is the dominant whiteware manufacturer in China and has been expanding offshore. In 2005, Haier made a US$1.28 billion, or US$16 per share, bid for Maytag, which was ultimately bought by Whirlpool Corp for US$1.7 billion. In 2009, it bought 20 per cent of New Zealand whiteware firm Fisher & Paykel (F&P) at the height of the global financial crisis, and won control of F&P in October 2012.
Haier Electronics on lookout for more logistics acquisitions
New acquisitions planned to meet mainland demand following 19pc rise in first-half profit
Haier Electronics plans new acquisitions to bolster its fast-growing logistics service business, after the company posted a 19 per cent year-on-year increase in first-half net profit.
The company, a subsidiary of home appliances giant Qingdao Haier, said the strategy would help meet demand on the mainland, where more enterprises are expected to outsource the storage, transport and distribution of their goods to professional third-party logistics companies.
"The group will reinforce investments and enhance its merger integration capability, aiming to absorb more third-party logistics teams into the group's platform," Haier Electronics chairman Zhou Yun Jie said in a results statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange yesterday.
Total capital expenditure of 367.53 million yuan (HK$462.05 million) in the first six months of the year was mainly used for developing its "integrated channel services" business, including the construction of logistics warehouse projects. The business helps fulfil the logistics requirements for a wide variety of household electrical appliances and consumer electronics goods.
In January, Haier Electronics made two acquisitions for an undisclosed sum to build up its logistics operations. It bought a 60 per cent stake in Shanghai Boyol New Brothers Supply Chain Management and wholly acquired Boyol Logistics Offshore.
The company entered into a strategic alliance with e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba in December with the goal of creating industry-leading service standards for the logistics, installation and servicing of household appliances across the mainland.
Hangzhou-based Alibaba invested HK$2.82 billion in Haier Electronics in that deal, with HK$1.86 billion of that amount put into subsidiary Qingdao Goodaymart Logistics and HK$965 million used to buy a minor equity stake in the company.
Alibaba also invested in HK$1.31 billion worth of convertible bonds issued by Haier Electronics in March. They could be converted into ordinary shares at HK$19.334 each in three years.
Zhou said the net proceeds from the convertible bonds would be used to expand and upgrade warehousing capacity, develop the company's online-to-offline integration business, and for potential new acquisitions in the logistics industry.
Ricky Lai, an analyst at Guotai Junan International, said : "Haier Electronics will likely pursue cooperation with other e-commerce service providers, based on the steady expansion of online shopping in more cities and villages across the mainland."
The company reported interim net profit of 978 million yuan, up from 822 million yuan a year earlier, on the back of its integrated channel services business. Total revenue grew 14 per cent to 32.9 billion yuan from 28.9 billion yuan in the first half of last year.