Talks are ongoing between Sika and Saint-Gobain. Saint-Gobain is making a bid to take control of the rival additive company, which Sika’s board of directors is against. The two companies have met to discuss the acquisition, but Sika released a statement saying: ‘Saint-Gobain continues to ignore the detrimental effects of the transaction on Sika and its shareholders. The concerns of Sika’s shareholders, Sika Management and Board are not taken serious. Furthermore, we distance ourselves from any claim made by Saint-Gobain that we have a joint view on possible synergies or any other aspect of the transaction’.
Sika has the support of a group of investors including Cascade Investment L.L.C., Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Trust, Fidelity Worldwide Investment and Threadneedle Investments. This group sent a letter expressing its concerns about the future welfare of the business and its 16 000+ employees, and offering its support in ‘exploring and pursuing action to resolve this situation as quickly as possible’. It should also be noted, however, that not all shareholders are against the acquisition and Ethos, the foundation for socially responsible investment and active shareownership, has established a group to mobilise these shareholders.
Sika achieved record sales across all regions in 2014. Sales growth was 13% overall, and 15.2% in the emerging markets. The company expects an above-average increase in net profit for the year.
Sika CEO Jan Jenisch said: "We exceeded our growth targets not only in the last quarter of 2014 but also throughout the entire financial year. These record results were achieved thanks to our employees, who use their expertise and demonstrate huge commitment every day as they implement our growth model. Our Strategy 2018, under which we are accelerating the build-up in the emerging markets, investing in new factories and launching new products, is producing results that exceed our targets and expectations."
Sika’s Board of Directors and Group Management state that they reject the change of control in the currently proposed form. However, they will continue to act in the best interest of Sika and its stakeholders, and this includes holding constructive talks with all the parties involved. The aim is to continue Sika's successful growth strategy without hindrance.
Adapted from press releases by Katherine Guenioui
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcement.com/europe-cis/20012015/talks-ongoing-between-sika-and-saint-gobain-173/