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Brits buy German rivals

UK FIRMS went on a shopping spree for German rivals yesterday, splashing a total of more than pounds 148m. In the largest of three deals unveiled yesterday, Morgan Crucible the UK maker of industrial materials, agreed to buy Siemens' magnetic components unit in a deal worth DM380m (pounds 125m) in cash and assumed debt.

Ian Norris, Morgan Crucible's chief executive, said: "This excellent fit provides a strong platform for Morgan to achieve significant organic growth... especially in the telecommunications and transportations."

Separately yesterday, Hanson, the UK-based building materials company, announced it had acquired 75 per cent of Rena, a privately owned German aggregates firm, for pounds 7.2m.

And Associated British Foods completed the hat-trick of Anglo-German alliances by gobbling up Rohm Enzyme, a hi-tech food-ingredients business for "in excess of DM50m".