U.S. aluminum giant Alcoa, Inc. has selected the ousted former chief of German conglomerate Siemens AG, Klaus Kleinfeld, as its president and chief operating officer, the company said Tuesday.

Kleinfeld, 49, will be second in command at the company, taking full responsibility for all operating activities starting October 1. The appointment by Alcoa's board places him in line to possibly succeed current chief Alain Belda, 64. Alcoa said Kleinfeld, who has served as a board member at Alcoa (NYSE: AA) since 2003, will be based out of New York.

Kleinfeld stepped down from his post at Siemens on July 1, after a two year high-profile tenure at Siemens. When the company's board refused to extend his contract, he said he would leave the firm at the end of September.

The company has been under intense scrutiny in recent years over a bribery and corruption scandal. Investigations have cleared Kleinfeld of any wrongdoing.

As chief of Siemens, Kleinfeld implemented a restructuring plan which sold off low-performing divisions, replacing them with faster growth units. He was previously the head of Siemens' U.S. division.

Klaus has a proven track record of running successful complex, international businesses, said Belda in a statement. He is a seasoned leader who demands results, and has a keen sense of the strategic challenges facing the company through his work on the Board. Klaus is joining our team at a time when we are achieving record top and bottom line results, and have good prospects for the future.

Alcoa recently failed in its two-year $28 billion hostile takeover effort to acquire Canadian rival, Alcan. Anglo-Australian miner Rio Tinto won the firm with a friendly $38 billion offer.