Temasek to buy minority stake of Danish engineering firm Haldor Topsoe

While Temasek is buying a sizable number of shares, the long-term majority shareholder will continue to be the Topsøe family

Photo: Facebook screengrab/Haldor Topsoe A/S

An agreement was signed on Tuesday, March 12, between Singapore’s Temasek and Danish engineering firm Haldor Topsøe Holding A/S, for Temasek to buy 30 percent of the shares of the company. The agreement is set to be finalized later in the year.

The Topsoe family currently owns 100 percent of the shares of the company.

The company’s chairman made a statement announcing the purchase on its website on March 12.

According to Jakob Haldor Topsøe, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Haldor Topsøe Holding A/S, “We are extremely pleased to welcome Temasek as our new minority shareholder in Haldor Topsøe. As a commercial investor, Temasek’s capital will further enhance our considerable growth potential organically and through potential acquisitions. In addition, Temasek is an experienced investor with significant insights and networks in Asian growth markets, including China. We look forward to truly beginning our collaboration when the agreement closes.”

The statement also says that Temasek was chosen by the Danish engineering firm since it recognized the value Temasek would add “through its deep insights and connections in Asian growth and other emerging markets.”

While the price of the transaction remained undisclosed, an anonymous source told Reuters that the agreement would value the engineering company at about US $1.5 billion (S$ 2.03 billion).

Concerning the transaction, Haldor Topsoe’s CEO Bjerne S. Clausen said that “Topsoe is in a strong market position after some years of consolidation and restructuring. Now, we are ready for growth, and following a successful closing of this deal I am convinced that the collaboration between Topsoe and Temasek will be extremely beneficial for both parties.”

Temasek and Haldor Topsoe employed the services of financial and legal advisors in arranging for the agreement. On Temasek’s side, Plesner acted as its legal advisor, while Nomura functioned as the company’s exclusive financial advisor.

On Haldor Topsoe’s side, its financial advisors are SEB (Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken) and Citi (Citigroup Inc.). Its legal advisor, on the other hand, is Kromann Reumert for both Haldor Topsøe Holding A/S and Haldor Topsoe A/S.

Reuters reports that Temasek will be subscribing to secondary shares that the Topsoe family will issue through Haldor Topsoe Holding A/S.

The Danish engineering firm is one of the best industrial catalyst producers around the globe, employing 2,300 people. Its revenues for 2017 reached around $760 million (S$ 1.03 billion).

Temasek was chosen over other financial sponsors from all over the world, Reuters’ source said. He added that the government-owned holding company had been shortlisted for deals with Haldor Topsoe, who started shopping around for a financial minority investor in 2018 in order to accelerate the company’s growth.

The Topsøe family has a long-term aim of eventually listing the company.

Temasek’s annual portfolio value was at a record high for the year ending in March 2018. It said it wants to slow down its investment pace in the light of the ongoing trade tensions between China and the United States.

According to Haldor Topsøe, the company “is a world leader in catalysis and surface science, committed to helping our customers achieve optimal performance. We enable companies to get the most out of their processes and products, using the least possible energy and resources, in the most responsible way.

We supply high-performance catalysts, proprietary technologies, process design, engineering, and services for use in the chemical and oil & gas industries, and we are at the forefront of developing sustainable technologies.

Our solutions address pressing global challenges such as improving energy efficiency, enhancing food production for the world’s growing population, and protecting our environment.”

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