Next stop: Siemens-Alstom train merger

June 24, 2014

Losing the competition for Alstom’s power assets was a blessing in disguise for the German engineering group. It can now focus fully on its internal restructuring. Fixing the ailing train unit is crucial. Hiving it off to Alstom itself could well be the best solution.

GE scores a Pyrrhic victory in France

June 20, 2014

The U.S. conglomerate has won the battle for Alstom’s energy businesses. It saw off nemesis Siemens and reached a truce with a hostile French state. Yet here’s a paradox: this is a clearer victory for Paris and Alstom than for GE itself. And it’s not all bad for Siemens either.

Paris forces GE into over-engineered Alstom bid

June 19, 2014

Take 3: out goes a simple $16 bln cash deal with some job promises. In comes a string of joint ventures to satisfy France’s taste for alliances and industrial champions. This looks less shareholder-friendly but more deliverable, and pulls GE further ahead of rival bidder Siemens.

Siemens needs more than Mitsubishi to win Alstom

June 11, 2014

The German engineer has teamed up with Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in its potential bid for Alstom. A joint approach lowers antitrust risk and cash outflows for Siemens. But trumping GE’s rival $15.4 bln proposal and job commitments will still be difficult.

Rob Cox: The worry now is a brewing M&A bubble

May 13, 2014

The corporate urge to merge has gone into global hyper-drive. Activity has surged as investors egg companies on and bid up the shares of acquirers well beyond mathematical prudence. When new metrics to justify the irrational are trotted out, it’s time to exercise caution.