China's Geely buys a $9 billion stake in Daimler, reports Bloomberg

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Chinese billionaire Li Shufu has bought a near 10-percent stake in Mercedes-Benz maker Daimler, making him the German group's largest single shareholder, a stock market filing showed Friday.

"It will be an honour to support this unique team under the leadership of Dieter Zetsche in the future", Li Shufu, chairman and owner of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group and Geely Group said in a statement.

Mr. Li, 54, is chairman of Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, a private company that owns a Chinese carmaker, Geely Automobile, as well as Volvo Cars, the Swedish auto brand.

As a component of the Frankfurt-based blue-chip index DAX, the Stuttgart-based Daimler's market value reached now more than EUR75 billion, as the information of arriving investment from China pushed up its share price.

"Chinese companies understand that leading European firms lean heavily on the People's Republic for sales and profits", said Michael Dunne, president of Dunne Automotive, a Hong Kong-based investment advisory firm focusing on automotive markets in Asia.

Zhejiang Geely owns Volvo and previous year acquired a 49.9 percent stake in Malaysian automaker Proton.

"While companies like Geely continue to develop their own products for the long-term, they see an opportunity to own some winners right now", he said. This month he appeared by video at an automotive conference in Germany, but did not discuss the matter.

"We are in competition with one another, but should cooperate in areas where it makes sense", Forster told the audience.

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