Siemens to decide on Alstom offer after meeting Hollande
German industrial giant Siemens will decide "as soon as possible" after talks with French President Francois Hollande Monday on a possible bid for French engineering group Alstom, it said.
Under a preliminary proposal, seen by AFP but not confirmed by Siemens, the German group offered to buy Alstom's energy business, also being eyed by General Electric (GE), and to give the French giant part of its train activities in return.
Hollande met the head of GE, Jeffrey Immelt, for about an hour on Monday, during which the president pressed his case for job protection and Alstom's decision-making centre to be kept in France.
The French leader will hold talks with Siemens boss Joe Kaeser later in the day.
"A Siemens delegation will have the opportunity to meet with the French president and other high-ranking French political leaders today," the company said in a brief statement.
"Following this meeting, Siemens will convene as soon as possible to decide whether to make an offer for Alstom and what this will consist of," it added.
A German economy ministry spokesman said earlier that a possible tie-up between the French and German companies offered "great potential in terms of industrial policy for Germany and France".
At the end of last week it emerged that GE was in advanced talks to buy Alstom's energy interests for about 10 billion euros ($14 billion).
© 2014 AFP