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Gores' Siemens Buy: One Big Bet

Buyout specialist Alec Gores sees promise in Siemens' troubled telecom business

Billions in losses. Thousands of layoffs. Sounds like a deal to Alec Gores.

The low-profile Los Angeles billionaire has entered into his largest acquisition yet, taking control of Siemens' (SI) troubled $5.5 billion telecom equipment unit, known as Siemens Enterprise Communications. The German industrial giant had been shopping the business for two years. During that time it lost more than $1.5 billion and sheared off more than 6,800 workers through restructuring efforts. Why does Gores think he can do better? "This is a landmark deal for us but it's the same recipe, the same sauce," he says. "Big corporations are not as focused on the little things."