FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) -- Daimler AG said Friday it is considering buying a 42 percent stake in OAO Kamaz, Russia's largest truck maker, in a bid to increase its presence in Europe's biggest truck market.
The Stuttgart-based company said it is looking at several options for Russia, including a new factory to locally assemble Daimler trucks, as well as the possibility of taking a stake in Kamaz that would "enable the two companies to combine their development, production, and sales expertise."
Daimler said in a statement it is in exclusive talks with Troika Dialog, an investment bank, to buy a 42 percent stake, and hopes to make a decision by the end of the year.
Troika said in June that it had invited Daimler, Volvo and Iveco to bid for the stake, which is worth approximately $1.8 billion.
Daimler said Russia is Europe's largest truck market, with new truck sales expected to grow by 20 percent over the next two years.
Russian Technologies, a state holding which includes aircraft, defense and car manufacturing holdings, has a 37.8 percent stake in Kamaz.