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Siemens sells computer unit to Fujitsu

German engineering group Siemens said on Tuesday it will sell its half of a computer joint venture with Fujitsu to the Japanese group for around €450 million ($566 million).

Fujitsu had held an option to buy all of the nine-year-old venture known as Fujitsu Siemens Computer (FSC), and the transaction should be finalised by April 2009, the Japanese company said.

“We will inherit a very solid client base and research and development capacity to underpin the global expansion of our product line,” Fujitsu President Kuniaki Nozoe told a news conference in Tokyo.

“This is our first step toward real globalisation. From now on, we will be pressed by customers to show Fujitsu can offer high-value added services and products without the Siemens brand,” he added.

Siemens financial director Joe Kaeser was quoted as saying: “We are very happy that our partner is buying our shares. We will continue to refocus our activities on the strategic sectors of energy, industrial equipment and health care.”

Asked if Fujitsu was considering new partners overseas, Nozoe said: “Of course, we need an alliance. I cannot tell you details, but we are about to begin such discussions.”

He added that “we have not thought about any lay-offs (job cuts)” and that there had been no discussions regarding a mooted sale of the PC business to the Chinese group Lenovo.

FSC had €6.6 billion in sales in its latest fiscal year which ended in March 2008, but faces stiff competition from US rivals Dell and Hewlett-Packard. FSC, which also makes mainframe computers and servers, posted a net profit of €69 million, and operating profit of €72 million.

MUNICH

Four injured as WWII bomb explodes near Munich train station

Four people were injured, one of them seriously, when a World War II bomb exploded at a building site near Munich's main train station on Wednesday, emergency services said.

Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich.
Smoke rises after the WWII bomb exploded on a building site in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Privat

Construction workers had been drilling into the ground when the bomb exploded, a spokesman for the fire department said in a statement.

The blast was heard several kilometres away and scattered debris hundreds of metres, according to local media reports.

Images showed a plume of smoke rising directly next to the train tracks.

Bavaria interior minister Joachim Herrmann told Bild that the whole area was being searched.

Deutsche Bahn suspended its services on the affected lines in the afternoon.

Although trains started up again from 3pm, the rail operator said there would still be delays and cancellations to long-distance and local travel in the Munich area until evening. 

According to the fire service, the explosion happened near a bridge that must be passed by all trains travelling to or from the station.

The exact cause of the explosion is unclear, police said. So far, there are no indications of a criminal act.

WWII bombs are common in Germany

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about WWII bomb disposals in Germany

However, most bombs are defused by experts before they explode.

Last year, seven World War II bombs were found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

Sizeable bombs were also defused in Cologne and Dortmund last year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-tonne bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people — the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.

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