German group Thyssenkrupp is in talks about possibly merging its unit ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS) with a domestic competitor to form a national champion.
The Thyssenkrupp board member in charge of the marine systems unit, Oliver Burkhard, tweeted earlier that the company was discussing as an alliance could make sense in the present European market environment, with the formation of a national champion one possible outcome.
The tweet followed a report by public sector broadcaster NDR, which stated Thyssenkrupp sounded out local competitors German Naval Yards and Luerssen.
Nevertheless, Thyssenkrupp has also stated TKMS might be sold as a part of a wider restructuring of the steel and engineering group, which is struggling with underperforming or loss-making subsidiaries along with plant building, car components, steel and supplies trading, exacerbated by the coronavirus crisis.
NDR stated the most recent discussions have been running since the start of the year, specializing in naval surface ships – excluding submarines – with the government assuming a moderating role.
Burkhard added that the defense ministry should have taken a clear position, alluding to the perceived need for state contracts to spice up sales and income.
A German marine offer for more than 4.5 billion euros earlier this year was awarded to Dutch company Damen, snubbing domestic firms that had been bidding.