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GE Eyes Buys In German Mittelstand;Hopes for 1 Deal by End-'12 -Report

General Electric Co. (GE) plans acquisitions among midsize, nonlisted companies in Germany and hopes to accomplish one takeover by the end of the year, the company's head of strategy and mergers and acquisitions in Germany, Christoph Reimnitz, tells daily newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung in an interview published Saturday. German midsize companies are known as "Mittelstand." Mr. Reimnitz said the group is looking for technology leaders in the business areas GE operates in, but not to buy competitors to gain market share. GE, which employs 7,000 staff at 70 locations in Germany, in general invests $5 billion to $6 billion in acquisitions world-wide, or more if M&A teams have a good idea, he said. Mr Reimnitz said he wasn't able to say how much of that amount would be available for acquisitions in Germany. Germany is currently in focus of GE, Mr Reimnitz said, echoing comments by the CEO Germany of GE's financing arm, GE Capital to Dow Jones Newswires Friday. German companies are currently fair-valued, if the economy weakens further in the autumn, valuations could drop, he said. GE is interested in family-owned companies, but cautious regarding offerings by financial investors, as GE probably looked at the companies a couple years ago and decided against buying them, he said. GE last made an acquisition in Germany two years ago, when its financing arm bought the German unit of Royal Bank of Scotland, according to the newspaper Newspaper website: www.sueddeutsche.de -Write to the Frankfurt Bureau at djnews.frankfurt@dowjones.com

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