By Liz White, UT staffThe Woodlands, Texas-Huntsman Corp. is to buy back a 9.7 percent stake in its Huntsman Advanced Materials llc (AdMat) unit-owned by SISU Capital Ltd and other parties-for about $125 million. Huntsman, which owns the remaining majority of the shares, intends to make AdMat a subsidiary of Huntsman International llc.The group also expects to refinance AdMat’s outstanding senior secured notes using available cash of $63 million, and the proceeds of a $350-million increase to Huntsman International’s existing term loan B due 2012. This refinancing is expected to be completed by the end of the year, said Huntsman’s statement on the buy-back. The acquisition of the Advanced Materials minority interests represents an attractive valuation and the refinancing will allow Huntsman to continue to simplify its capital and reporting structure,” said Kimo Esplin, executive vice president and chief financial officer, in the company statement. The transaction should result in lower interest costs and a more efficient tax structure, and add to the group’s earnings per share in 2006, Esplin added. The AdMat operation makes advanced epoxy, acrylic and polyurethane-based products used in a wide variety of industrial and consumer applications, a typically example being resins and adhesives for wind turbine blades. AdMat also makes materials used in consumer electronics to improve functionality and reduce the size of products; multi-functional resins for structural composites for modern aerospace uses; and adhesives used to fix insulating panels to the hull of cryogenic liquid natural gas tankers.”
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