Issue Date: December 4, 2017
Clariant reorients after failed Huntsman tie up
Swiss specialty chemical firm Clariant says it will announce a new growth strategy early in 2018 after its recent failure to complete a $20 billion “merger of equals” with Huntsman Corp. Potential options include mergers and acquisitions, short-term portfolio rearrangement, sending cash to shareholders, a review of costs, and the pursuit of new growth opportunities, the company says. The merger with Huntsman was scuttled largely by activist investor White Tale, a 20% shareholder of Clariant, which said the deal undervalued the Swiss firm. In a response, Clariant’s management emphasizes that it continues to have the backing of many of its shareholders. It claims that White Tale’s repeated requests for Clariant to hire an investment bank to conduct a strategic review indicate that White Tale is interested in breaking up the company and selling its assets. Clariant’s management says this is not in line with its long-term vision for the company.
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