May 31, 2019 / 1:34 PM / a year ago

Thyssenkrupp buys U.S. elevator firm in local expansion push

FRANKFURT, May 31 (Reuters) - Thyssenkrupp on Friday said it bought the elevator unit of U.S.-based Nashville Machine Company, strengthening its own elevator business, which it plans to list on the stock exchange to bring in fresh funds.

All of Nashville Machine Elevator's 130 employees will be taken on by Thyssenkrupp's elevator division, which is valued at about 14 billion euros ($15.6 billion), almost twice Thyssenkrupp's current market valuation.

No financial details were disclosed.

Nashville Machine Company has been maintaining and installing elevators for about a century, Thyssenkrupp, which earlier this month unveiled plans for a partial listing of Elevator Technology (ET), said.

For ET, the world's fourth-largest elevator maker by sales, the Americas are by far the biggest sales market, accounting for 40.1% of the 7.554 billion euros the division made in revenues in the past financial year.

That puts it ahead of Switzerland's Schindler and Finland's Kone, the world's No.2 and No.3 elevator makers, which last year made 20 percent and 28 percent of their revenues respectively in the Americas region last year.

Sector leader Otis, in the process of being separated from parent United Technologies Corp (UTC), generated 31 percent of its sales in the Americas last year, analysts at Jefferies reckon, meaning its absolute sales volume there exceeds Thyssenkrupp's.

UTC Chief Executive Gregory Hayes last week said he expected ET and Otis to hold discussions about a potential combination deal once both divisions have completed their respective separations, according to the Hartford Courant newspaper.

"It makes a lot of sense," he was quoted here as saying.

$1 = 0.8967 euros Reporting by Christoph Steitz, editing by Thomas Escritt

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