FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German engineering group Siemens will take a first major step on Wednesday to separate its 14 billion-euro ($18 billion) healthcare unit from the company, two sources with knowledge of the matter said on Tuesday.
Siemens' supervisory board will decide on the creation of new healthcare country units, including in Germany, capable of holding licenses for products such as imaging equipment independently of Siemens AG, said one of the sources.
Siemens fears large investments will be needed in the high-margin business as new diagnostic methods and new rivals such as Samsung heighten competition with traditional rivals like General Electric and Philips.
The Munich-based company declined to comment.
(Reporting by Georgina Prodhan; Editing by Christoph Steitz)