Report: Siemens, Motorola discuss wireless venture

Motorola and Siemens AG are discussing possible joint ventures in their wireless infrastructure and handset businesses, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday. A deal could result in ventures worth between US$20 billion and $25 billion, the paper said, citing "people familiar with the situation."

"It's a rumor; it's nothing new. It's standard at our company that we don't comment on rumors," a Siemens spokeswoman said. A spokeswoman for Motorola said she was not immediately able to comment.

The talks between the companies, which have been underway for several months, are "at a delicate stage and could fall apart," the newspaper quoted its sources, adding that no announcement is imminent. Both companies' share prices dropped Friday, on rumors that Siemens was in discussions to buy Motorola, the report said.

Siemens' shares on the Frankfurt exchange (SIE.FRA) were at 41.85 euros (US$38.07) in mid-morning trading Monday, up 1 percent from Friday's close. Motorola was down half a percent on the same exchange (MTL.FRA), at 17.22 euros.

Motorola, once a leader in mobile phone and semiconductor technology, has suffered major setbacks in the current economic climate, announcing 32,000 job cuts since December 2000.

Siemens, for its part, has so far eliminated 7,500 jobs in its Information and Communication Mobile division, while a former subsidiary, semiconductor manufacturer Infineon Technologies AG, has announced 5,000 job cuts.

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