Elkem ASA, the Norwegian silicones producer and a subsidiary of China National Bluestar (Group) Co Ltd, said on Thursday that it has completed an initial public offering and become one of the 20 largest companies on the Oslo Stock Exchange.
The company intended to raise funds through the issuance of new shares, part of which will be used to integrate two Chinese assets of Bluestar－Jiangxi Bluestar Silicone (Xinghuo Silicone) and Bluestar Silicon Materials (Lanzhou Silicon)－in order to realize integrated management of Bluestar's global silicone business.
Elkem announced its intention to launch an IPO and apply for a listing of the company's shares on Oslo bourse on Feb 26. The offer period for the IPO closed on Wednesday and trading of the shares commenced on the Oslo Stock Exchange on Thursday.
Shares in the offering were allocated at a final price of 29 Norwegian krona (.76) per share. The transaction is among the largest IPO's in Norway over the last few years. Elkem entered OSE with a market capitalization of some 16.86 billion Norwegian krona.
China National Bluestar (Group) Co has been the sole owner of Elkem since 2011. Following the IPO, Bluestar has reduced its ownership from 100 percent to 61.8 percent and will continue to be Elkem's majority shareholder.
Under Bluestar's ownership, Elkem has been transformed into today's structure. A partial exit through an IPO has been part of Bluestar's strategy for their Elkem investment from the beginning.
"With Bluestar support, Elkem successfully transformed into an international company of high value specializing in the silicone business. Going public is an important and natural step for development and upgrading," said Ren Jianxin, chairman of China National Chemical Corp, the parent company of Bluestar.
Ren said Bluestar will continue to support Elkem after the IPO to achieve continuous growth of its business, consolidation of market share in all segments and offer a range of integrated services to customers.
"The Elkem's listing today is the achievement of many years of specialization and full integration to create a global worldwide leader in silicones," said Michael Koenig, chief executive officer of China National Bluestar and chairman of the board of Elkem ASA.
"We have combined French technology and market positions, Norwegian precision and operational excellence and Chinese ambition and speed of execution. This creates a unique offer for new shareholders, employees and customers," he said.
"The listing of Elkem has made Bluestar a pioneer in the IPO of Chinese companies in Norway, sending positive signals to global business circles," said Li Guanghui, vice-president of the Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation in Beijing.