Alexander Dennis attracts interest from Chinese firms

A Chinese automotive major is reportedly putting the final touches to a £200 million takeover approach for Falkirk bus maker Alexander Dennis.

Workers at the Alexander Dennis plant in Falkirk. Picture: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

It is thought Shanghai-listed Yutong has held preliminary talks with the Scottish company, which has 2,000 staff and produces buses for major transport operators north of the Border such as FirstGroup and Stagecoach.

It is said a competing offer from another Chinese company, BYD – which already has a business relationship with Alexander Dennis – is possible.

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A spokesman for the Scottish bus builder and Yutong were not available for comment yesterday. Alexander Dennis ran into financial problems 12 years ago, but was saved by a consortium of Scottish business people, including Stagecoach’s founder and boss Sir Brian Souter.

However, its fortunes improved, and the group made a pre-tax profit of £13.2m in 2014.