Chinese automaker BAIC Group is looking at buying a 5% stake in Daimler in an effort to secure its investment in Chinese Mercedes-Benz manufacturing company Beijing Benz Automotive, the Securities Times reported, citing international wires.

BAIC would need about US$3.25 billion to complete the proposed acquisition, based on the German carmaker’s latest market capitalization.

The report said BAIC has informed Daimler of its intent and the firm is unlikely to issue new shares for the proposed plan. Thus BAIC will have to stage the purchase from the secondary market.

BAIC’s partnership with Daimler goes back to 2005 when the two established the joint venture, Beijing Benz. They have several joint ventures in China presently.

In March 2018, Daimler announced it had purchased a 3.93% stake in Beijing Electric Vehicle, a subsidiary of BAIC, to strengthen its partnership in the area of new energy vehicles.

BAIC did not respond to requests for comment.