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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Siemens Ups Stake in Power Machines

BERLIN -- Siemens, Germany's largest engineering company, paid $93 million to raise its stake in Russia's largest maker of power turbines after earlier attempts to increase its holding were rebuffed by the government.

The company bought a 20.62 percent stake in Power Machines from Interros, a company controlled by billionaire Vladimir Potanin, Siemens said Monday. The transaction raises Siemens' stake in the company to 25 percent and one share from 4.38 percent.

The purchase "will play an important part in consolidating our position on the Russian market,'' Siemens chief executive officer Klaus Kleinfeld said in a statement. "Our new stake in Power Machines opens up interesting growth opportunities in the up-and-coming modernization of the Russian power plant fleet."

A previous bid in April, personally hammered out by Kleinfeld, to acquire a majority of Power Machines was rejected by the Federal Anti-Monopoly Service on the grounds that such a purchase would limit competition.

Russian lawmakers also protested Siemens' earlier bid amid concern the purchase would infringe upon national security. The larger holding gives Siemens more sway over the turbine maker, which had sales of $662 million in 2004 and employs about 13,000 people in areas such as acquisition strategy. The holding also hands Siemens improved access to the world's fourth-largest power market, which Siemens said was set to undergo "decisive changes."

Siemens is among the world's biggest makers of power turbines, an industry where the German manufacturer competes with General Electric. The division, one of 11 main business areas at Siemens, is one of the company's most profitable units, and Siemens turbines help generate one-third of U.S. electricity. The purchase was already approved by Russia's antitrust authorities in December, Siemens said Monday.