August 8, 2007 / 8:09 PM / 12 years ago

UPDATE 1-Lear CEO sells large portion of his stake

(Adds details and background)

NEW YORK, Aug 8 (Reuters) - The chief executive of auto parts maker Lear Corp (LEA.N) has sold about $654,400 of his holdings in the company, according to a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing on Wednesday.

In the filing, Robert Rossiter revealed he sold 20,000 shares of the company on Wednesday for an average price of about $32.72. According to filing tracker Insiderscore.com, the sale represented about one-fifth of his stake in the company.

Rossiter would have stepped down as CEO had shareholders approved a $37.25 per share buyout by billionaire Carl Icahn’s American Real Estate Partners LP (ACP.N) that included the ascension of President Douglas DelGrosso to chief executive.

The offer met stiff opposition from some big shareholders and shareholder advisory firms as severely undervaluing Lear, and shareholders rejected the deal by a wide margin in June, leaving the company public.

In disclosures before the vote, Lear said Rossiter had discussed the unsecured nature of his retirement fund with the board in 2006 and the risk to his net worth from a large equity stake in the company should the industry deteriorate.

The takeover would have allowed Rossiter to receive accelerated payout of his benefits under the executive pension plan without retiring.

It was Rossiter’s second large sale this year after he sold nearly 27,000 shares in March as part of a trading plan.

Lear shares closed down 2.6 percent at $31.36 on the New York Stock Exchange.

(Reporting by Emily Chasan and David Bailey)

((Editing by Gary Hill/Andre Grenon; Reuters Messaging: rm://emily.chasan.reuters.com@reuters.net;Tel: +1 646 223 6114)) Keywords: LEAR CEO/

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