TOKYO: Toyota and Suzuki soared in Tokyo trading Wednesday after reports that the Japanese automakers are in talks over a partnership focused on making compact cars for emerging markets, including India.
The leading Nikkei business daily said Toyota — re-established as the world’s top auto maker Wednesday — and small-car specialist Suzuki were discussing the possible tie-up. Kyodo News ran a similar story, citing sources familiar with the matter.
Both firms quickly denied they were discussing a partnership, but investors embraced the news, sending Suzuki soaring almost 16 percent in early deals.
Its shares finished the day at 3,590 yen, up 11.35 percent.
Toyota rose 3.80 percent to close at 6,881 yen, after adding more than four percent at one stage.
The Nikkei report said the two firms were also discussing investing in each others’ shares while Toyota was set to make its mini-car unit Daihatsu a wholly owned company.
It currently owns slightly more than half of Daihatsu, which surged 16.40 percent in Tokyo to finish at 1,724 yen.
The reported Toyota-Suzuki talks were aimed at swapping environmentally friendly technologies and other know-how to capitalize on demand for small cars in India, Thailand, Indonesia and other emerging markets.
Both firms issued brief Japanese-language statements that described the reports as “not a fact”.
With respect to Daihatsu, Toyota said: “We are constantly considering a number of possibilities relating to Daihatsu, such as partnerships or business restructuring, including making the company a fully owned subsidiary. However, at this point, no decisions have been made.”