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Bombardier in Talks to Combine Rail Unit With Alstom

  • Canadian trainmaker has held talks with French competitor
  • Discussions began before Bombardier warned on sales, Airbus JV
An Aventra Class 345 electric multiple-unit test train, right, manufactured by Bombarider Inc., to be used on the Elizabeth Line as part of the Crossrail project, sits on tracks in a hangar at the Bombardier Transportation UK Ltd. Rail Vehicles Production Site in Derby, U.K., on Friday, July 29, 2016. Crossrail, approved in 2008 to cut journey times across London and the Southeast, is Europe's largest construction project.

Photographer: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

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Bombardier Inc., the embattled Canadian train and plane maker, is exploring a combination of its rail business with French rival Alstom SA, according to people familiar with the matter.

The two companies have held preliminary talks about a rail deal in the past few months, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private. Representatives for Alstom and Bombardier declined to comment.