RAG and CVC Partners revive plans for Evonik's IPO, place shares with investors

09:27 AM | February 22, 2013 | Natasha Alperowicz

The owners of Evonik Industries, RAG Foundation (Essen, Germany) and CVC Capital Partners, have revived plans to float Evonik Industries, the companies announced today. “Evonik Industries AG is resuming its preparations for its planned listing in the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange,” the companies say. The move is prompted by the improved capital market environment as well as investors’ growing interest, they add.
RAG and CVC, in advance of the planned listing, had placed a part of their shares with institutional investors. Both owners have disposed of an equal amount of shares, representing less than 10% of Evonik, in private placement advised by MainFirst Bank. RAG owned 75% of Evonik and CVC held the balance, before the placement. The purchase price has not been disclosed, but the companies say that it is “in line with the valuation of comparable European specialty chemicals groups and significantly exceeds the indicative prices from the listing originally planned in June 2012"—when the companies planned to float 30% of Evonik.
The broadening of the shareholder base marks a first step towards the intended IPO of shares. The new shareholders consist of selected German and international institutional investors. “For RAG Foundation, the sale of shares in Evonik has two advantages: We have achieved a good result while making further headway towards the planned listing of the company,” says Werner Müller, chairman of RAG’s executive board.
“After four and a half years of close cooperation, CVC and RAG Foundation have used this private placement to open Evonik to responsible new investors,” says Christian Wildmoser, partner at CVC. Interest was already very strong at the time of the planned listing in 2012, when market conditions became too volatile, he says, adding that the private placement “puts us in a more positive position towards achieving an intended stock exchange listing with less effort and makes us less dependent on what is a volatile market environment.”
“Investors’ strong interest testifies to the success of our growth strategy. We look forward to continuing along this path together with the existing and the new shareholders,” says Klaus Engel, chairman of Evonik.
Evonik, supported by a broader group of shareholders, will continue to pursue its innovation and growth strategy and plans investments exceeding €6 billion ($7.94 billion) between 2012 and 2016. A major portion of these funds will be invested in fast-growing emerging markets.
RAG, established in 2007, has a task of building up assets by 2018 to fund long-term liabilities in the German coal mining industry from 2019. This objective is to be achieved by the IPO of Evonik.