German materials giant Wacker testing IPO waters

March 27, 2006 – Wacker Chemie AG plans to raise up to 350 million euros (US $420 million) in an initial public offering next month, according to news media reports. Approximately 52.12 million shares will be listed on the Frankfurt stock exchange on April 10, with pricing announced on March 30 and finalized on April 7, according to a prospectus. Shares will come partly from Wacker Chemie’s own shareholding, from the majority-owning Wacker family, and from Morgan Stanley & Co Inc. The Wacker family would retain a majority stake.

Company CFO Joachim Rauhut, quoted by AFX, noted that funds mainly would be invested into solar technology. CEO Peter-Alexander Wacker also was quoted as saying that the company has no plans to dispose of its semiconductor unit Siltronic, which it attempted to spin off in 2004 but has since been restructured.

Wacker-Chemie posted a net profit of 144.2 million euros ($119.9 million) in 2005, vs. 16.1 million euros in 2004 ($19.5 million), on 10% higher sales of 2.76 billion euros ($3.32 billion). In 2005, the Siltronic unit reported nearly 14% better sales of 925 million euros ($1.12 billion), and returned to profit (before taxes and interest) of 5.8 million euros ($7.0 million), vs. an EBIT loss of 100.7 million euros ($121.7 million) in the previous year.


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