Huntsman, Clariant to join in merger of equals

The new company, HuntsmanClariant, will have sales of $13.2 billion, an adjusted EBITDA of $2.3 billion and a combined enterprise value of $20 billion.

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Huntsman Corp. (The Woodlands, TX, US) and Clariant (Pratteln, Switzerland) on May 22 announced that their boards of directors unanimously approved a definitive agreement to combine in a merger of equals through an all-stock transaction.

The merged company will be named HuntsmanClariant. On a pro forma 2016 basis, the combination of both companies reportedly will create a leading global specialty chemical company with sales of approximately $13.2 billion, an adjusted EBITDA of $2.3 billion and a combined enterprise value of approximately $20 billion at announcement.

“This is the perfect deal at the right time. Clariant and Huntsman are joining forces to gain much broader global reach, create more sustained innovation power and achieve new growth opportunities,” says Hariolf Kottmann, CEO of Clariant. “This is in the best interest of all of our stakeholders. Peter Huntsman and I share the same strategic vision and I look forward to working with him.”

Peter R. Huntsman, president and CEO of Huntsman, says: “I could not be more enthusiastic about this merger and look forward to working closely with Hariolf Kottmann, a man I have admired and trusted for the past decade. We also look forward to a close association with his immensely talented colleagues around the world. Together, we will create a global leader in specialty chemicals with a combined balance sheet providing substantial financial strength and flexibility.”

Transaction highlights:

  • All-stock merger of equals transaction
  • Clariant shareholders: 52%; Huntsman shareholders: 48%
  • Huntsman shareholders receive 1.2196 shares in HuntsmanClariant for each Huntsman share (each existing Clariant share will remain outstanding as a share in HuntsmanClariant)
  • Board of Directors with equal representation from Clariant and Huntsman
  • Global headquarters in Pratteln; operational headquarters in The Woodlands
  • Dual stock exchange direct listing on the SIX Swiss Exchange and the New York Stock Exchange

The new company will accelerate value creation for shareholders through a more robust combination of technology, products and talent. The combined company expects to realize more than $3.5 billion of value creation from approximately $400 million in annual cost synergies. The full synergy run-rate will be achieved within two years of closing. These synergies will be realized by reducing operational costs and improving procurement. The targeted synergies represent roughly 3% of total combined 2016 revenue with one-time costs up to $500 million. There will also be additional cash-tax savings.

The transaction is targeted to close by year end 2017, subject to Clariant and Huntsman shareholder approvals, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Clariant and Huntsman are confident that the required regulatory approvals can be obtained in a timely manner.