Akzo Nobel N.V. has announced shareholders will receive €5.5 billion, following completion of the sale of the Specialty Chemicals business. This is in addition to €1 billion advance proceeds distributed by a special cash dividend paid on December 7, 2017.
A total of €6.5 billion will have been distributed to shareholders, delivering on a commitment to return the vast majority of €7.5 billion net proceeds, from the separation of the Specialty Chemicals business.
The additional €5.5 billion proceeds will be distributed using a capital repayment and share consolidation of €2 billion, special cash dividend of €1 billion, and share buyback of €2.5 billion.
Thierry Vanlancker, CEO of AkzoNobel, said: “This is a clear sign we are delivering on our commitments and focused on creating value for all our stakeholders as a paints and coatings company. We consulted many shareholders and evaluated various options to determine an optimal and timely way to return the vast majority of net proceeds following the sale of the Specialty Chemicals business.”
The capital repayment and share consolidation will be subject to shareholder approval at an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM), to be held on November 13, 2018. The special cash dividend will be paid shortly after the capital repayment and share consolidation has been completed. The share buyback will commence following payment of the special cash dividend and likely be completed during the middle of 2020. Shares will be cancelled following repurchase.
Remaining proceeds will be used for the repayment of debt, costs associated with the transformation, and bolt-on acquisitions. The ordinary dividend relevant for AkzoNobel as a focused paints and coatings company is €1.65 per share, as announced on April 19, 2017, and the dividend policy remains ‘stable to rising’. AkzoNobel is committed to retain a strong investment grade credit rating.