FILE PHOTO: Showroom attendants polish a vehicle under a Jaguar logo at a Jaguar Land Rover showroom in Mumbai February 13, 2013. REUTERS/Vivek Prakash

(Reuters) – India’s Tata Motors Ltd on Friday denied media reports that it was exploring options for its ailing luxury car unit Jaguar Land Rover Automotive Plc.

Two media reports said the company was considering options including a minority stake sale in the JLR unit or finding a venture partner that would jointly develop vehicles and lower costs.

The reports of a potential stake sale drove Tata Motors shares up as much as 3.7 percent to 184 rupees. The stock pared some of the gains and ended up 1.6 percent.

“There is no truth to the rumors that Tata Motors is looking to divest its stake in JLR,” a Tata Motors spokesperson told Reuters.

Tata Motors posted its biggest-ever quarterly loss in Indian corporate history of about $4 billion last month, hurt by slumping China sales.

The company also warned the Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) unit, which brings in most of its revenue, would swing to an operating loss in the year to March versus an earlier projection for breakeven, given weak sales at the luxury British carmaker.

The company may prefer to keep control of JLR, and rather seek fresh equity from investors, BloombergQuint said, citing a Bloomberg report.

The discussions are at an early stage and Tata Motors has held preliminary talks with potential advisers, ET Now reported.

Reporting by Tanvi Mehta in Bengaluru, additional reporting by Aditi Shah in New Delhi; Editing by Gopakumar Warrier


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