* Shares fall more than 30 percent over two days
* Market and analysts fret over high debt levels
* "There's hardly any risk" -Apollo managing director
(Adds comments from management, analyst, updates share
MUMBAI/NEW DELHI, June 14 India's Apollo Tyres
Ltd lost a third of its market value over two days as
investors fretted over the debt it will take on to fund its
$2.5-billion acquisition of U.S.-based Cooper Tire & Rubber Co
Apollo shares were down 6.9 percent at 63.85 rupees by 0858
GMT on Friday, after falling as much as 8.7 percent to 62.60
rupees, their lowest since January 2012. The stock fell more
than 25 percent on Thursday.
The company said only about $450 million of the total $2.5
billion debt will be serviced by its India business, with the
rest shouldered by the cash flows of Cooper, the second biggest
U.S. tyre-maker, and its European subsidiary.
"There's hardly any risk," Apollo Managing Director Neeraj
Kanwar told reporters in New Delhi. The deal will reduce the
firm's dependence on a slowing Indian market.
The fully debt-funded acquisition prodded at least two
brokerages to downgrade the stock, while several more have put
the company's share rating on review.
"Given the inherent margin volatility in the tyre business
and the leverage involved, the transaction clearly involves
excessive risk," brokerage Kotak Institutional Equities said in
a research note, downgrading the stock to "reduce" from "buy".
Kotak slashed Apollo's stock target price to 64 rupees from
110 rupees, citing significant risk to future cash flows and
earnings of the company due to the heavy debt burden.
The acquisition of Cooper, at nearly three times the Indian
company's market value, will give Apollo access to the top two
auto markets, the United States and China, and will create the
world's seventh-largest tire maker.
(Reporting by Matthias Williams in NEW DELHI and Aradhana
Aravindan in MUMBAI; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)