Siemens AG has sold 150 million shares in its former subsidiary Infineon, reducing its stake in the chip maker to about 19 percent.

The sale earned the German electronics and engineering giant $770 million. Siemens previously held just below 40 percent of Infineon.

The news pushed down the share price of Infineon (NYSE: IFX) some 75 cents, or almost 5 percent, to around $15 in late afternoon trading.

Infineon is based in Germany with U.S. operations in San Jose, but recently expanded into new office space in Cary, where the company has its business operations center. It intends to employ 400 in the area by 2007 with the lure of state-funded incentives.