PITTSBURGH - PPG Industries Inc. and Kansai Paint of Japan announced the signing of a non-binding memorandum of understanding and said they have entered into negotiations aimed at the launch of an alliance that would target the global automotive OEM market.

PPG said that under the alliance, the two companies would set up marketing and sales operations initially in North America and Europe targeting Japanese automotive OEM companies. The two companies would subsequently launch marketing and sales operations in Shanghai, China, and later in other Asian countries to supply the region's automotive OEM customers.

PPG, a major global producer of automotive and other transportation coatings, provided no other details of the discussions. Kansai Paint, headquartered in Osaka, Japan, manufactures a range of paint and coatings products sold to the domestic Japanese market and elsewhere in Asia.