by Christopher Freeburn | October 25, 2013 9:04 am
On Thursday, DuPont (DD) announced that it will separate its performance chemical business, allowing the company to concentrate on its agricultural and speciality materials divisions.
The titanium oxide unit, which produces pigments used in a range of products from consumer goods to automotive paints, will be launched as a publicly traded company within 18 months. The unit generated more than 20% of DuPont’s overall annual revenue last year. However, titanium oxide prices have fluctuated wildly in recent years, putting pressure on DuPont to seek greater share price stability, Reuters notes.
Wall Street has pressed DuPont executives about the company’s plans for the performance chemicals business, with calls for it to divest the unit coming from major analysts last year.
Company officials said that it had been considering spinning off the titanium oxide unit for more than a year. DuPont shareholders will hold 100% of the performance chemicals unit after it becomes an independent company.
An executive management team has not yet been selected to helm the business once it becomes a separate company.
Shares of DuPont rose more than 1% in Friday pre-market trading.
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