Reuters – Evonik Owners Place More Shares Ahead of Listing

The owners of Evonik have placed a total of 12 percent of their shares in the German chemical company, more than initially planned, ahead of its stock market listing scheduled for next month, Reuters wrote. The sale of additional shares in a private placement met with “strong interest from domestic and international investors,” said the maker of battery chemicals, animal feed additives and acrylic glass, even as it warned that the business environment would remain challenging this year. Among the buyers was Singapore state investor Temasek, Evonik said, adding that its two main owners, the RAG trust and buyout firm CVC Capital Partners, could part with an additional 2 percent of their shares.

(Reuters) – The owners of Evonik have placed a total of 12 percent of their shares in the German chemical company, more than initially planned, ahead of its stock market listing scheduled for next month.

The sale of additional shares in a private placement met with “strong interest from domestic and international investors,” said the maker of battery chemicals, animal feed additives and acrylic glass, even as it warned that the business environment would remain challenging this year.

Among the buyers was Singapore state investor Temasek , Evonik said, adding that its two main owners, the RAG trust and buyout firm CVC Capital Partners, could part with an additional 2 percent of their shares.

“Following a very good first half, organic sales growth weakened slightly in the second half of the year,” Evonik said, reporting a 2 percent fall in fourth-quarter sales to 3.27 billion euros ($4.26 billion)

The adjusted profit before interest and tax slipped 3 percent to 336 million euros, also because of the sale of its Carbon Black unit in 2011.

Documents seen by Reuters last month showed that RAG, which holds 75 percent of Evonik, and CVC, owner of the rest, had already sold a stake of almost 4 percent with the aim of placing about 10 percent of the shares in total with various financial investors.

The most recent share deals with investors valued all shares in Evonik, which ranks as Germany’s second-largest diversified chemicals group after BASF, at 14.5 billion euros, a person close to the sellers told Reuters.

The private placement with institutional investors was arranged by MainFirst Bank AG.

Chief Executive Klaus Engel said it remained unclear whether there would be a public offering of shares as part of the listing, still slated for end-April, or only the chance for existing shareholders to trade on the open market.

The group expects sales to be higher in 2013 as it builds extra output capacity in emerging markets such as Singapore, China and Brazil but operating results should remain flat.

CVC and RAG, a public-sector trust that will bear the liabilities of Germany’s wound-down coal industry, decided last month to revive their plans to take Evonik public as stock markets recovered.

The STOXX Europe 600 chemicals sector index has gained 4.4 percent so far this year.