Alstom reaches preliminary deal to buy Bombardier train unit, report says

The Wall Street Journal reports that Bombardier Inc. has reached a preliminary deal to sell its train division to French rail giant Alstom SA for more than US$7 billion.

The news outlet quotes unnamed sources as saying the deal could be announced as soon as Monday.

Bombardier and Alstom did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday from The Canadian Press.

The reported deal with Alstom would come as little surprise since Bombardier, which is carrying long-term debt of US$9.3 billion, announced last month it was studying its options to accelerate its deleveraging, or reducing debt by selling assets.

It would add to the list of assets the plane and train maker has sold in the last five years, which includes Q400 turboprop planes, the CRJ regional jet program and the former C Series aircraft.

The sale would mean the Quebec company is focusing its business on private jets.

Bombardier Transportation is based in Berlin and employs some 1,000 workers at factories in Quebec’s Bas-St-Laurent region and in St-Bruno-de-Montarville, on Montreal’s South Shore.

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