Clariant AG attracted a $150 million investment from Norway’s central bank, which has become one of the Swiss chemical company’s top 10 shareholders.
Norges Bank bought almost 9 million shares on Feb. 18, equal to a 3.03 percent stake in the Muttenz-based maker of moisturizer ingredients and diesel catalysts, according to a regulatory filing.
“I would assume they are quite long term and hence stable,” Patrick Rafaisz, an analyst at Bank Vontobel AG in Zurich, said by e-mail.
Clariant is undergoing its biggest transformation since its spinoff from drugmaker Sandoz in 1995 as it builds out catalyst and consumer-chemical units and sells lower-performing leather-treatment, detergents, and intermediates businesses. The potential earnings drivers of cost savings and high-margin products are not fully factored in by analysts, according to Markus Mayer, an analyst at Kepler Capital Markets.
A group of former shareholders of Sued-Chemie, bought by Clariant for about $2.2 billion in 2011, hold the largest stake.
Shares of Clariant traded 2.8 percent lower at 13.88 francs as of 9:44 a.m. in Zurich. The wider Swiss market was 0.9 percent lower.