|Kevin Kalkhoven continues to diversify Cosworth|
UPDATE Cosworth is opening a new manufacturing facility in Michigan, ahead of an initial public offering (IPO) in the next year or two.
The US facility is one of three milestones Cosworth hopes to achieve before the IPO. Another will be to have a solid-state lidar product for autonomous vehicles on the market. That product will prove key to Cosworth's future as it moves away from a motorsport focus and more towards powertrain, electronic and sensor technology for future road cars. As well as the US factory, Cosworth is aiming to build a presence in Asia too.
Cosworth's chief executive officer Hal Reisiger said on Monday that he was optimistic about the company's value, but chairman Kevin Kalkhoven urged caution and pledged for patience.
'We will do the IPO when both we and the market are ready, and not before,' Kalkhoven told Reuters. 'Auto-tech companies are currently getting healthy valuations, and we believe that at the time we go public, we will be able to get a valuation that is equitable with the rest of the market.'
06/08/18 Legendary manufacturer of Formula One engines, Britain-based Cosworth, has plans to go public in 2019 in New York. Reuters reported on Thursday that the company is looking to launch an initial public offering (IPO) after the first quarter of 2019.
Today, Cosworth does much more than build engines. The British engineering company, which Ford owned until 2004, makes powertrain and electronics technology such as vehicle software and even sensors for self-driving cars. It also provides data analytics.
Cosworth Chairman Kevin Kalkhoven told Reuters that the company currently has a backlog of $440 million worth of contracts through 2026 and it earned a record revenue of $72.5 million last year. Kalkhoven, an Australian, bought Cosworth with Gerald Forsythe from Ford Motor Company in 2004, when the two co-owned the Champ Car World Series.
“We will be able to demonstrate our new product revenue and profit potential in real terms after the close of the first quarter in 2019," Kalkhoven said. "It's at that time that we will look to go public," he added. According to the report, the IPO would follow Cosworth showing revenues from new contracts for hybrid engines and sensor technologies.
IPOs provide an influx of cash for the businesses in question as they sell shares, the income from which can be used to reinvest or expand more quickly.
Aside from the IPO, Cosworth also plans for a significant investment in Detroit. The company will open a new manufacturing facility in Detroit by the end of the year, and said it will install $50 million worth of new machinery and staff the plant with 100 scientists, engineers, and researchers.
Cosworth isn't alone with hopes to go public. Aston Martin, Volvo, and Uber all have plans to one day turn their private companies into publicly held entities. Specifically, Aston Martin could be valued up to $7 billion in its IPO. Geely, which owns Volvo Cars, said it's looking at a value between $16 billion and $30 billion for the business.