We reported a couple of weeks ago that Mazda shares owned by Ford could be up for sale. Earlier reports today confirm Ford is looking to sell most of its remaining stock in Mazda Motors Japan, and even has a number of buyers lined up to take a deal.
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Nikkei business daily reported a month ago that Ford was looking to sell most of its 11 percent share in Mazda, but now says Ford has up to 10 companies ready to buy as much as 70 percent of its stake, leaving Ford owning just three percent. The Nikkei report says Itochu and Sumitomo companies are said to buy three percent each at a price of $US119.7 million ($122.5 million).

Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, Mazda's main lender, already holds 2.9 percent share and is said to buy more, while the rest of the shares will be sold to some of Mazda's components and parts suppliers.

Ford is hoping that selling the shares will give the company more flexibility in the Chinese market, so it can sell more models and compete more freely in certain segments.