CEO stresses stake in Swiss chemicals specialist is purely strategic investment
Saudi Basic Industries Corp. has no interest in taking over Clariant AG after the chemicals makers last week halted talks on their high-performance plastics venture, the company’s chief executive officer said.
"Our investment in Clariant is a strategic investment, we’re going to continue to look at this investment as a growth opportunity," Yousef Abdullah Al Benyan told reporters in Riyadh on Sunday. Sabic last year bought a 24.99 percent stake in the Swiss chemicals specialist.
"We have no interest in a full takeover if that's your question, but we have an interest to grow our share and make sure that we can really bring positive growth and return on investment for Sabic and Clariant shareholders," Al Benyan said when asked about the prospect of raising its stake.
Sabic and Clariant suspended talks on their high-performance plastics venture a day after the Swiss company's CEO Ernesto Occhiello unexpectedly quit. Sabic cited "current unfavorable market conditions" for halting talks and said it's looking forward to continuing the discussions once conditions improve.
Sabic, the biggest petrochemicals maker in the Middle East, on Sunday reported a 68 percent drop in second-quarter profit as demand for chemicals and plastics declined.