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Siemens AG history, profile and corporate video

Siemens AG is engaged in the electrical engineering and electronics business. It operates through the following segments: Energy, Healthcare, Industry, Infrastructure and Cities, Equity Investments, and Financial Services. The Energy segment offers products, services, and solutions for the generation and transmission of power; and the extraction, conversion, and transport of oil and gas. The Healthcare segment offers medical solutions such as medical imaging, in vitro diagnostics, interventional systems, and clinical information technology systems. The Industry segment offers products, services, and solutions that include industry automation, system integration and solutions for industrial plant businesses, as well as water processing systems. The Infrastructure & Cities segment provides integrated mobility solutions, building and security systems, power distribution equipment, smart grid applications, and low- and medium-voltage products. The Equity Investments segment focuses on home appliances, telecommunications, and communication networks. The Financial Services segment supplies capital for infrastructure, equipment, and operations. The company was founded by Werner von Siemens and Johann Georg Halske on October 12, 1847 and is headquartered in Munich, Germany.

“Siemens History

1847 to 1901

Siemens & Halske was founded by Werner von Siemens and Johann Georg Halske on 12 October 1847. Based on the telegraph, his invention used a needle to point to the sequence of letters, instead of using Morse code. The company, then called Telegraphen-Bauanstalt von Siemens & Halske, opened its first workshop on October 12.

In 1848, the company built the first long-distance telegraph line in Europe; 500 km from Berlin to Frankfurt am Main. In 1850, the founder’s younger brother, Carl Wilhelm Siemens later Sir William Siemens started to represent the company in London. The London agencybecame a branch office in 1858. In the 1850s, the company was involved in building long distance telegraph networks in Russia. In 1855, a company branch headed by another brother, Carl Heinrich von Siemens, opened in St Petersburg, Russia. In 1867, Siemens completed the monumental Indo-European (Calcutta to London) telegraph line.

In 1881, a Siemens AC Alternator driven by a watermill was used to power the world’s first electric street lighting in the town of Godalming, United Kingdom. The company continued to grow and diversified into electric trains and light bulbs. In 1890, the founder retired and left running the company to his brother Carl and sons Arnold and Wilhelm. In 1887 it opened its first office in Japan.

1901 to 1933

Siemens & Halske (S & H) was incorporated in 1897, and then merged parts of its activities with Schuckert & Co., Nuremberg in 1903 to become Siemens-Schuckert.

In 1907, Siemens (Siemens & Halske and Siemens-Schuckert) had 34,324 employees and was the seventh-largest company in the German empire by number of employees.(see List of German companies by employees in 1907)

In 1919, S & H and two other companies jointly formed the Osram lightbulb company.

During the 1920s and 1930s, S & H started to manufacture radios, television sets, and electron microscopes.

In 1932, Reiniger, Gebbert & Schall (Erlangen), Phönix AG (Rudolstadt) and Siemens-Reiniger-Veifa mbH (Berlin) merged to form the Siemens-Reiniger-Werke AG (SRW), the third of the so-called parent companies that merged in 1966 to form the present-day Siemens AG.

In the 1920s, Siemens constructed the Ardnacrusha Hydro Power station on the River Shannon in the then Irish Free State, and it was a world first for its design. The company is remembered for its desire to raise the wages of its under-paid workers only to be overruled by the Cumann na nGaedheal government.

1933 to 1945

During the final years of World War II, numerous plants and factories in Berlin and other major cities were destroyed by Allied air raids. To prevent further losses, manufacturing was therefore moved to alternative places and regions not affected by the air war. The goal was to secure continued production of important war-related and everyday goods. According to records, Siemens was operating almost 400 alternative or relocated manufacturing plants at the end of 1944 and in early 1945.

In 1972, Siemens sued German satirist F.C. Delius for his satirical history of the company, Unsere Siemenswelt, and it was determined much of the book contained false claims although the trial itself publicized Siemens’ history in Nazi Germany. The company supplied electrical parts to concentration camps and death camps. The factories had poor working conditions, where malnutrition and death were common. Also, the scholarship has shown that the camp factories were created, run, and supplied by the SS, in conjunction with company officials, sometimes high-level officials.

Siemens businessman and Nazi Party member John Rabe is, however, credited with saving many Chinese lives during the Nanking Massacre. He later toured Germany lecturing on the atrocities committed in Nanking.

1945 to 2001

In the 1950s and from their new base in Bavaria, S&H started to manufacture computers, semiconductor devices, washing machines, andpacemakers.

In 1966, Siemens & Halske (S&H, founded in 1847), Siemens-Schuckertwerke (SSW, founded in 1903) and Siemens-Reiniger-Werke (SRW, founded in 1932) merged to form Siemens AG.

In 1969, Siemens formed Kraftwerk Union with AEG by pooling their nuclear power businesses.

The company’s first digital telephone exchange was produced in 1980. In 1988 Siemens and GEC acquired the UK defence and technology company Plessey. Plessey’s holdings were split, and Siemens took over the avionics, radar and traffic control businesses — as Siemens Plessey.

In 1985, Siemens bought Allis-Chalmers’ interest in the partnership company Siemens-Allis (formed 1978) which supplied electrical control equipment. It was incorporated into Siemens’ Energy and Automation division.

In 1987, Siemens reintegrated Kraftwerk Union, the unit overseeing nuclear power business.

In 1991, Siemens acquired Nixdorf Computer AG and renamed it Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme AG, in order to produce personal computers.

In October 1991, Siemens acquired the Industrial Systems Division of Texas Instruments, Inc, based in Johnson City, Tennessee. This division was organized as Siemens Industrial Automation, Inc., and was later absorbed by Siemens Energy and Automation, Inc.

In 1992, Siemens bought out IBM’s half of ROLM (Siemens had bought into ROLM 5 years earlier), thus creating SiemensROLM Communications; eventually dropping ROLM from the name later in the 1990s.

In 1997, Siemens agreed to sell the defence arm of Siemens Plessey to British Aerospace (BAe) and a German aerospace company, DaimlerChrysler Aerospace. BAe and DASA acquired the British and German divisions of the operation respectively.

In October 1997, Siemens Financial Services (SFS) was founded to act as competence center for financing issues and as a manager of financial risks within Siemens.

In 1998, Siemens acquired Westinghouse Power Generation for more than $1.5 billion from CBS corp and moving Siemens from third to second the world power generation market.

In 1999, Siemens’ semiconductor operations were spun off into a new company called Infineon Technologies. In the same year, Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme AG became part of Fujitsu Siemens Computers AG, with its retail banking technology group becoming Wincor Nixdorf.

In 2000, Shared Medical Systems Corporation was acquired by the Siemens’ Medical Engineering Group, eventually becoming part of Siemens Medical Solutions.

Also in 2000 Atecs-Mannesman was acquired by Siemens, The sale was finalised in April 2001 with 50% of the shares acquired, acquisition, Mannesmann VDO AG merged into Siemens Automotive forming Siemens VDO Automotive AG, Atecs Mannesmann Dematic Systems merged into Siemens Production and Logistics forming Siemens Dematic AG, Mannesmann Demag Delaval merged into the Power Generation division of Siemens AG. Other parts of the company were acquired by Robert Bosch GmbH at the same time.

2001 to 2011

In 2001 Chemtech Group of Brazil was incorporated into the Siemens Group, the company provides industrial process optimisation, consultancy and other engineering services.

Also in 2001, Siemens formed joint venture Framatome with Areva SA of France by merging much of their nuclear businesses.

In 2002, Siemens sold some of its business activities to Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P. (KKR), with its metering business included in the sale package. 

In 2003 Siemens acquired the flow division of Danfoss and incorporated it into the Automation and Drives division. Also in 2003 Siemens acquired IndX software (realtime data organisation and presentation). The same year in an unrelated development Siemens reopened its office in Kabul. Also in 2003 agreed to buy Alstom Industrial Turbines; a manufacturer of small, medium and industrial gas turbines for €1.1 billion. On February 11, 2003, Siemens planned to shorten phones’ shelf life by bringing out annual Xelibri lines, with new devices launched as spring -summer and autumn-winter collections. On March 6, 2003, the company opened an office in San Jose. On March 7, 2003, the company announced that it planned to gain 10 per cent of the mainland China market for handsets.  On March 18, 2003, the company unveiled the latest in its series of Xelibri fashion phones. 

In 2004 the wind energy company Bonus Energy in Brande, Denmark was acquired, forming Siemens Wind Power division. Also in 2004 Siemens invested in Dasan Networks (South Korea, broadband network equipment) acquiring ~40% of the shares, Nokia Siemens disinvested itself of the shares in 2008. The same year Siemens acquired Photo-Scan (UK, CCTV systems) US Filter Corporation (water and Waste Water Treatment Technologies/ Solutions, acquired from Veolia), Hunstville Electronics Corporation (automobile electronics, acquired from Chrysler), and Chantry Networks (WLAN equipment).

In 2005 Siemens sold the Siemens mobile manufacturing business to BenQ, forming the BenQ-Siemens division. Also in 2005 Siemens acquired Flender Holding GmbH (Bocholt, Germany, gears/industrial drives), Bewator AB (building security systems), Wheelabrator Air Pollution Control, Inc. (Industrial and power station dust control systems), AN Windenegrie GmbH. (Wind energy), Power Technologies Inc. (Schenectady, USA, energy industry software and training), CTI Molecular Imaging (Positron emission tomography and molecular imaging systems), Myrio (IPTV systems),Shaw Power Technologoes International Ltd (UK/USA, electrical engineering consulting, acquired from Shaw Group), and Transmitton (Ashby de la Zouch UK, rail and other industry control and asset management).

In 2006, Siemens announced the purchase of Bayer Diagnostics, which was incorporated into the Medical Solutions Diagnostics division on 1 January 2007, also in 2006 Siemens acquired Controlotron (New York) (ultrasonic flow meters) Also in 2006 Siemens acquired Diagnostic Products Corp., Kadon Electro Mechanical Services Ltd. (now TurboCare Canada Ltd.), Kühnle, Kopp, & Kausch AG, Opto Control, and VistaScape Security Systems

In March 2007 a Siemens board member was temporarily arrested and accused of illegally financing a business-friendly labour association which competes against the union IG Metall. He has been released on bail. Offices of the labour union and of Siemens have been searched. Siemens denies any wrongdoing. In April the Fixed Networks, Mobile Networks and Carrier Services divisions of Siemens merged with Nokia’s Network Business Group in a 50/50 joint venture, creating a fixed and mobile network company called Nokia Siemens Networks. Nokia delayed the merger due to bribery investigations against Siemens. In October 2007, a court in Munich found that the company had bribed public officials in Libya, Russia, and Nigeria in return for the awarding of contracts; four former Nigerian Ministers of Communications were among those named as recipients of the payments. The company admitted to having paid the bribes and agreed to pay a fine of 201 million euros. In December 2007, the Nigerian government cancelled a contract with Siemens due to the bribery findings.

Also in 2007 Siemens acquired Vai Ingdesi Automation (Argentina, Industrial Automation), UGS Corp., Dade Behring, Sidelco (Quebec, Canada), S/D Engineers Inc., and Gesellschaft für Systemforschung und Dienstleistungen im Gesundheitswesen mbH (GSD) (Germany).

In July 2008, Siemens AG announced a joint venture of the Enterprise Communications business with the Gores Group. The Gores Group holding a majority interest of 51% stake, with Siemens AG holding a minority interest of 49%.

In August 2008, Siemens Project Ventures invested $15 million in the Arava Power Company. In a press release published that month, Peter Löscher, President and CEO of Siemens AG said: “This investment is another consequential step in further strengthening our green and sustainable technologies”. Siemens now holds a 40% stake in the company. 

In January 2009, Siemens announced to sell its 34% stake in Framatome, complaining limited managerial influence. In March, it announced to form an alliance with Rosatom of Russia to engage in nuclear-power activities.

In April 2009, Fujitsu Siemens Computers became Fujitsu Technology Solutions as a result of Fujitsu buying out Siemens’ share of the company.

In October 2009, Siemens signed a $418 million contract to buy Solel Solar Systems an Israeli company in the solar thermal power business.

In December 2010 Siemens agreed to sell its IT Solutions and Services subsidiary for €850 million to Atos. As part of the deal, Siemens agreed to take a 15% stake in the enlarged Atos, to be held for a minimum of five years. In addition, Siemens concluded a seven-year outsourcing contract worth around €5.5 billion, under which Atos will provide managed services and systems integration to Siemens.

2011 to present

In March 2011, it was decided to list Osram on the stock market in the autumn, but CEO Peter Löscher said Siemens intended to retain a long-term interest in the company, which was already independent from the technological and managerial viewpoints.

In September 2011 Siemens, which had been responsible for constructing all 17 of Germany’s existing nuclear power plants, announced that it would exit the nuclear sectorfollowing the Fukushima disaster and the subsequent changes to German energy policy. Chief executive Peter Löscher has supported the German government’s plannedEnergiewende, its transition to renewable energy technologies, calling it a “project of the century” and saying Berlin’s target of reaching 35% renewable energy sources by 2020 was feasible.

In November 2012, Siemens acquired the Rail division of Invensys for £1.7 billion. In the same month, Siemens made the announcement of acquiring a privately held company, LMS International NV. 

In August 2013, Nokia acquired 100% of the company Nokia Siemens Networks, with a buy-out of Siemens AG, ending Siemens role in telecommunication.

In August 2013, Siemens won a $966.8 million order for power plant components from oil firm Saudi Aramco, the largest bid it has ever received from the Saudi company.

In 2014, Siemens plans to build a $264 million facility for making offshore wind turbines in Paull, England, as Britain’s wind power rapidly expands. Siemens chose the Hull area on the east coast of England because it is close to other large offshore projects planned in coming years. The new plant is expected to begin producing turbine rotor blades in 2016. The plant and the associated service center, in Green Port Hull nearby, will employ about 1,000 workers. The facilities will serve the UK market, where the electricity that major power producers generate from wind grew by about 38 percent in 2013, representing about 6 percent of total electricity, according to government figures. There are also plans to increase Britain’s wind-generating capacity at least threefold by 2020, to 14 gigawatts. 

In May 2014, Rolls-Royce agreed to sell its gas turbine and compressor energy business to Siemens for £1 Billion.  In June 2014 Siemens and Mitsubishi Heavy Industriesannounced their formation of joint ventures to bid for Alstom’s troubled energy and transportation businesses (in locomotives, steam turbines, and aircraft engines). A rival bid byGeneral Electric (GE) has been criticized by French government sources, who consider Alstom’s operations as a “vital national interest” at a moment when the French unemployment level stands above 10% and some voters are turning towards the far-right.”

*Information from Forbes.com and Wikipedia.org

**Video published on YouTube by “ Alux.com