6 Jun 2016

US company owned by NZ billionaire goes bankrupt

7:57 pm on 6 June 2016

An American car-parts company owned by New Zealand billionaire Graeme Hart is filing for bankruptcy after losing business from three of its biggest customers.

UCI International makes pumps and filters for carmakers, including Ford Motors. but it has lost key customers, including General Motors and big retailers AutoZone and Advance Auto Parts.

Mr Hart - who has a fortune estimated at $10 billion - became the indirect owner of UCI after a 2011 acquisition by his firm, Auckland-based Rank Group Ltd.

UCI has 1800 employees in the US and assets worth over $400 million but its liabilities total more than $700 million.