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ThyssenKrupp denies report on possible sale of automotive unit

The headquarters of Germany's industrial conglomerate ThyssenKrupp AG are pictured in Essen January 16, 2013. REUTERS/Ina Fassbender
The headquarters of Germany's industrial conglomerate ThyssenKrupp AG are pictured in Essen January 16, 2013. REUTERS/Ina Fassbender

BERLIN (Reuters) - German steelmaker ThyssenKrupp has denied a magazine report that it is preparing to sell its automotive division.

Weekly magazine Focus said in an advance release of an article to be published in Monday's edition that ThyssenKrupp, struggling with billions of euros of debt and a loss-making Steel Americas business, had asked potential investors for indicative offers for its automotive operations.

"That's nonsense," a spokeswoman at the Essen-based company told Reuters on Sunday. "We want to develop the business further strategically."

Last year, ThyssenKrupp sold its Tailored Blanks unit, then market leader in laser-welded blanks for the automotive industry, to Chinese peer Wuhan Iron and Steel <600005.SS>.

(Reporting by Matthias Inverardi; Writing by Andreas Cremer; Editing by Mark Potter)

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