A group of 52 suppliers has agreed to pay California a combined $23 million for rigging bids and fixing prices on a wide range of auto parts.
California’s claim was prompted by a continuing, 9-year-old antitrust probe by the U.S. Dept. of Justice into criminal conspiracy to set prices on components ranging from seatbelts and brake lines to engine parts and air conditioning systems. The U.S. investigation is the most active in a coordinated global criminal probe that includes prosecutors in Europe and Japan.
The Justice Dept. has collected more than $4 billion in civil and criminal fines to date from dozens of suppliers who admitted guilt in manipulating bids and prices. At least 66 executives also have been charged or imprisoned for their roles in the cheating.
Chinese electric-car startup Nio Inc. is forming a manufacturing joint venture with Beijing E-Town International Investment and Development Co., which is investing 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) in the business.
How GM, Toyota and a Couple of Gutsy Managers Made the U.S. Version of the Two-Seater a Reality
For conducting business in the U.S. market, Toyota has historically had several separate business entities: a sales and distribution company headquartered in California (Toyota Motor Sales, USA); manufacturing operations (Toyota Motor Manufacturing North America); a racing subsidiary (Toyota Racing Development, USA); the Toyota Technical Center for R&D in Ann Arbor; and a design facility in California (Calty Design Research, Inc.). On April 1, 2006, Toyota merged its R&D operations and its manufacturing operations into a single company.