* Vitesco shares open at 59.8 eur/shr, close at 58.9 eur
* Price gives Vitesco market value of 2.36 billion eur
* Continental shareholders suffer loss in portfolio
BERLIN, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Shares in Vitesco Technologies
closed lower on Thursday after a volatile market
debut, with the German car parts maker poised to fend for itself
in the electric vehicle transition after spinning off from
For Continental's shareholders, who received one Vitesco
share for every five Continental shares they owned, the combined
value of their six shares at Thursday's close was 5.6% below the
value of their five Continental shares on Wednesday.
The spin-off wiped 3.73 billion euros ($4.38 billion) off
Continental's market value, which settled at just under 19
billion euros at market close.
Vitesco, which produces powertrains for international
combustion engine (ICE) cars and increasingly hybrid and
electric vehicles (EVs), ended the day with a value of 2.36
Continental, among the world's largest auto suppliers
producing everything from tires to assisted driver systems,
delayed the spin-off of Vitesco by two years due to unfavorable
market conditions worsened by the coronavirus pandemic.
"We were confronted by developments that no one had
foreseen," Vitesco CEO Andreas Wolf said at the Frankfurt stock
exchange, adding "the corona crisis fully confirmed our strategy
... e-mobility is booming."
Vitesco shares started trading at 59.80 euros per share and
swung between 56.89-66.88 euros in the course of the day. They
closed at 58.9 euros.
The listing comes as automotive suppliers are struggling to
reorient their production lines to stay relevant amid the EV
transition, with EVs requiring not only fewer parts but new
technologies such as batteries and software - not traditionally
the expertise of Germany's auto industry.
Vitesco currently earns the vast majority of its revenue
from parts for ICE cars, but Wolf told Reuters this month he
hopes to break even on sales for EV components by 2024 and reap
three quarters of revenues from EV parts by 2030.
In 2020, Vitesco's sales fell 12% to 8 billion euros as the
pandemic combined with a global chip shortage and rising raw
material costs stymied sales across the auto industry.
Still, sales in the first half of 2021 were up 29% on the
previous year at 4.4 billion euros, with a profit margin of
($1 = 0.8510 euros)
(Reporting by Victoria Waldersee, Arno Schuetze; Additional
reporting by Alexander Huebner and Riham Alkousaa
Editing by David Evans and Mark Potter)