Alstom and Siemens place their high-speed train technology on the table: sources

The merger has promise since it could create a Franco-German rail company that will be in a better position to compete with China.

According to sources familiar with the matter at hand, Alstom and Siemens have offered to divest one of their high-speed train technology in order to address EU antitrust concerns about their merger plans.

Other elements of their proposal includes selling the bulk of Alstom’s signaling business in Europe in addition to some Siemens signaling assets, said a source.

These developments comes in the wake of French giant Alstom and German industrial group Siemens putting in their offer last week, saying that it was made up mainly of signaling activities and stock products which made up around 4% of the sales of the combined company.

According to sources, both companies have offered to divest either Alstom’s Pendolino platform or Siemens’ Velaro Novo platform.

Pendolino, which features a tilting technology that results in less braking before bends, is tailored for high-speed and conventional lines. Pendolino trains have been sold to 12 operators in 12 countries. Siemens’ Velaro Novo high-speed trains, on the other hand, will only enter service in 2023.

The proposal includes a five-year license to sell the trains in Europe.

Incidentally, the signaling assets on offer include three fourths of Alstom’s signaling business in Europe, said a source. The package includes signaling for urban transport, mainline trains and conventional trains.

The European Commission has given a week’s time for rivals and customers to provide their feedback on the deal.

A negative response could prompt it to demand more concessions from Siemens and Alstom before it makes a ruling by February 18.

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