Ton Büchner, CEO of AkzoNobel, said:
“Our commitment to substantial shareholder returns reinforces our belief that the plan we are outlining today will create a step change in value creation, generating significant shareholder value in the short, medium and long term. It will be delivered at pace, with a clear timeline and is in the best interest of all stakeholders.
“During recent years, we have consistently delivered on our commitments to improve profitability and growth, while building momentum within our Company. We have world class teams and a solid financial and operational foundation.
“The industry-leading performance and outlook of our Specialty Chemicals business gives us the confidence to return proceeds to shareholders in advance of the separation. In addition, we see extensive growth momentum in our Paints and Coatings business, which we expect to keep growing faster than market rates, allowing us to improve our long-term financial guidance.
“Now is the right time to create two focused, high-performing businesses. This strategy will create substantial value for shareholders with significant less risks and uncertainties compared to alternatives.
“We believe our long-term focus in sustainability creates value for all stakeholders, including our shareholders, customers and employees. We continue to lead the industry with our ambition to being carbon neutral and using 100% renewable energy by 2050.
“Our ongoing commitment to invest around €1 billion in research and development by 2020 will create innovative products and services, as well as making a positive contribution to the communities in which we operate.
“We have laid out a new plan today with clear, ambitious goals. With the support of our colleagues across the world and building on our incredible brands, we will create two leading, customer focused businesses which will deliver enhanced value for all our stakeholders.”
Antony Burgmans, Chairman of the AkzoNobel Supervisory Board, said:
“The Supervisory Board believes that management’s plan for AkzoNobel’s future will deliver superior shareholder value compared to the alternatives.
“It will be delivered by a competent, experienced management team with a proven track record at a faster pace, with considerably less risk and at significantly lower social cost.
“The plan will enable AkzoNobel to thrive both to the benefit of our shareholders and the communities worldwide in which we operate.”
A webcast of the investor event, which will take place today at 10.00am BST, is available here: Register for the video webcast here.
* Note: Current financial guidance for 2016 to 2018:
- Paints and Coatings 10-12% ROS, ROI >18%
- Specialty Chemicals 11.5-13% ROS, ROI >16%
** Excluding unallocated corporate costs
This is a public announcement by AkzoNobel N.V. pursuant to section 17 paragraph 1 of the European Market Abuse Regulation (596/2014). This public announcement does not constitute an offer, or any solicitation of any offer, to buy or subscribe for any securities in AkzoNobel N.V.