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China's Haier to take 20% stake in NZ's F&P Appliances
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China's largest home appliances maker Haier announced Wednesday that it would take a 20 percent stake in New Zealand's Fisher & Paykel Appliances.

Haier did not reveal how much it would invest in the New Zealand's white goods manufacturer for the stake, but Fisher & Paykel told the New Zealand Stock Exchange Wednesday that Haier would invest about 80 million New Zealand dollars (nearly 50 million U.S. dollars) in the company.

Haier said in a statement that the two companies have also signed a cooperation agreement, pledging to complement each other's technical advantages, share each other's resources of market and supply chain, and enhance cooperation in after-sale services.

"As part of the cooperation, Haier will franchise and distribute home appliances of Fisher & Paykel brand in the Chinese market, and Fisher & Paykel will franchise and distribute home appliances of Haier brand in the Australian and New Zealand's markets," the statement said.

Headquartered in the seaside city of Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province, Haier is the world's fourth largest home appliances manufacturer and employs more than 50,000 people globally.

Founded in 1934, Fisher & Paykel mainly makes refrigerators, washing machines, cooking stoves and dishwashers. It enjoys the largest market share in New Zealand, but it is now debt-ridden due to falling New Zealand dollar and has been trying to reduce its overseas debt.

(Xinhua News Agency May 27, 2009)

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