* The transaction to close in 9-15 months
* Will give access to high-end aerospace domain
* Will increase Novelis capacity to 4.4 million tonnes (Adds Breakingviews link)
MUMBAI, July 26 (Reuters) - India's Hindalco Industries Ltd said its U.S. unit Novelis Inc has agreed to buy aluminium processor Aleris Corp for $2.6 billion, giving it a foothold in supplying the aerospace industry and other value-added businesses globally.
Hindalco, which is owned by Indian conglomerate Aditya Birla Group, expanded into the value-added aluminium business when it acquired aluminium re-rolling company Novelis for $5.9 billion in 2007.
The deal for Aleris will be the group's biggest acquisition since then and will increase the production capacity of Novelis - one of the world's biggest suppliers of aluminium sheets for beverage cans and car parts - by nearly a quarter to 4.4 million tonnes, Hindalco said at a press conference on Thursday to announce the deal.
The $2.6 billion deal will include $775 million of equity and $1.8 billion of debt which will be funded through Novelis, Kumar Mangalam Birla, chairman of Aditya Birla Group said.
"This also diversifies our product mix to include some premium segments where we have not been present such as the high-end aerospace domain," Birla told the press conference.
As well as aerospace, the deal will give Novelis a presence in the construction market in the United States and a broader base of customers in the car industry, Hindalco said.
The combined entity, comprising Novelis and Aleris, will have annual revenues of $15 billion while its parent company Hindalco, which is India's biggest flat-rolled aluminium producer, will have annual revenues of $21 billion including the contribution from the merged entity, Birla said in the conference.
Aleris had revenues of $3 billion in 2017.
The combined entity's net debt to adjusted EBITDA, a gauge of its debt repaying ability, will rise to about four times at the close of the deal and fall back to three times within two years, Hindalco said.
Reporting by Tanvi Mehta and Promit Mukherjee Editing by Susan Fenton