Knorr Bremse says interested in buying 60% stake in Hella

BERLIN, June 29 (Reuters) - Knorr Bremse said on Tuesday it was interested in buying a 60% stake in German automotive components maker Hella, sending shares in family-controlled Hella higher by more than 8%.

Knorr, a maker of braking systems used in trains and commercial vehicles, said in a statement issued via the Frankfurt stock exchange that consultations were at an early stage and it was not certain that a transaction would ensue.

The families that control Hella are considering selling their 60% stake, Germany’s Manager Magazin reported in April, citing several people familiar with the matter.

The magazine said the Hueck family has asked investment bank Rothschild to approach possible buyers for the stake, which has a market value of about 3 billion euros ($3.6 billion).

Under German regulations, the buyer of the controlling stake would have to make an offer to buy out the remaining 40% of shares in the company.

Shares in Knorr Bremse were down 5.3% on the news. ($1 = 0.8405 euros) (Reporting by Douglas Busvine Editing by Madeline Chambers)