Evonik Shares Gain 2.5% on First Day of Trading: Frankfurt Mover

Evonik Industries AG, Germany’s third-biggest chemical maker, gained 2.5 percent on the first day of trading after it listed the 14.5 percent of shares it had already sold to institutional investors.

The stock opened at 33 euros in Frankfurt today. Yesterday, investors had paid 32.20 euros per share as the company sold a 2.3 percent stake. A 12.2 percent stake had already been sold in private placements in February and March. The stock traded at 32.725 euros as of 11:36 a.m. valuing the company at 15.3 billion euros ($20 billion).

Evonik, based in Essen and majority owned by RAG-Stiftung and CVC Capital Partners, decided to sell stakes to institutional investors before a listing after three previous attempts at an initial public offering were called off because of market volatility. RAG-Stiftung, which plans to cut its holding to about 25 percent eventually, has earmarked proceeds to pay for costs related to closing Germany’s deep-shaft coal mines from 2018.

“Today is a good day for the company and the German stock market,” Chief Executive Officer Klaus Engel, said today in a statement.

Evonik, a candidate to join the local benchmark DAX index when enough shares are freely traded, risks losing out in the competition for investors as increases in the share price will be an opportunity for the owners to further reduce their stakes, analysts including Oliver Schwarz at MM Warburg have said.

Germany’s biggest chemical makers by sales are DAX members BASF SE and Bayer AG.

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