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Pro Analysis

Breakingviews: GE suggests bold new thinking with creative Baker Hughes deal

A worker looks at the 9HA Gas Turbine, at the General Electric plant in Belfort, France.
Frederick Florin | AFP | Getty Images
A worker looks at the 9HA Gas Turbine, at the General Electric plant in Belfort, France.

General Electric is taking its motto "imagination at work" to heart. The deal it has just cooked up with Baker Hughes, an oilfield-services rival, sets an intriguing precedent for the $267 billion industrial behemoth. The finances of the arrangement may stack up for shareholders, too. But what could set this transaction apart is GE's implicit recognition that the sum of its many parts may be more valuable than the whole.