NEW YORK — The takeover threat facing Borg-Warner Corp. increased dramatically Thursday as GAF Corp. said it owned or had options to buy a total of 9.6% of Borg-Warner and might seek a merger.
GAF thus joins Irwin L. Jacobs, the Minneapolis investor and takeover artist, in amassing a major stake in Borg-Warner, a diversified manufacturing, chemicals and services concern based in Chicago.
Jacobs currently holds 7.4% of the company and also has said he might seek control.
Borg-Warner, aware of the takeover threat, has been accelerating its own restructuring program aimed at boosting shareholder values. Before GAF's announcement, Borg-Warner said it planned to sell its profitable financial services unit as part of the program.
GAF, a Wayne, N.J.-based maker of specialty chemicals and building products, said it owned 4.24 million, or 4.9%, of Borg-Warner's 86.5 million common shares outstanding. GAF said it acquired the stock at an average price of $29.15 a share.