An event that had been talked about for a few weeks finally came about today, as Toshiba announced that it had completed an agreement with British Nuclear Fuels to acquire Westinghouse. The final price tag: $5.4 billion (U.S.):
``Given the potential we believe what we've paid is the correct price, there was a lot of competition,'' Atsutoshi Nishida, Toshiba president, said today during a press conference in London. The acquisition will triple Toshiba's nuclear energy business, he said.Toshiba also announced that it would be selling portions of Westinghouse to a number of minority investors, but that Toshiba would still retain control of at least 51 percent of Westinghouse.
Toshiba is seeking to expand its power plant operations as the company expects the market for atomic energy to expand by 50 percent by 2020. Westinghouse will give Toshiba the pressurized water reactor technology preferred by China, which may spend as much as $54 billion by that year building nuclear stations.
The price paid for the business, up from $3.2 billion during an auction three weeks before Toshiba was chosen last month as the preferred bidder, is almost five times the $1.1 billion the U.K. government paid for Westinghouse in 1999. Toshiba trumped bids from companies including General Electric Co. and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.
For more from Toshiba, read their official press announcement.
Technorati tags: Nuclear Energy, Nuclear Power, Energy, Technology, Westinghouse, AP-1000