alstom, the French engineering firm, and ABB of Switzerland have announced that Alstom will acquire ABB’s 50% interest in their joint company ABB Alstom Power for 1.25 billion euros (US$1.2B). The joint venture, established last year, combined the power plant development businesses of both Alstom and ABB. The com-pany, under the new name Alstom Power, will represent close to 80% of Alstom’s sales in its core energy and transport activities. Sales last year were 9.8B euros.

The deal will make Alstom the world leader in the power generation plant and equipment market. The buyout gives Alstom full control of a group which has built roughly one-fifth of the world’s installed power generating capacity, ahead of General Electric, Siemens/Westinghouse and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

When the transaction is completed, Claude Damon, president and chief executive of ABB Alstom Power, will continue in the same roles with Alstom Power and will also be deputy chief executive of the parent Alstom. According to Göran Lindahl, chief executive of ABB, the proceeds from the sale will be used partly by ABB for internet commerce between businesses. Funds will also be applied to activities such as automation and power transmission.