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Orion Engineered Carbons files for IPO

On April 22, 2014, carbon black producer Orion Engineered Carbons Holdings GmbH (Frankfurt, Germany) submitted a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission to raise up to $300 million in an initial public offering with the intent to list on the New York Stock Exchange. A copy of the filing can be found here and a synopsis of the filing can be found here. The SEC filing did not disclose pricing terms. The deal is being handled by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and UBS Investment Bank. Orion Engineered Carbons was formed in 2011 when Rhone Capital L.L.C. and Triton Advisors Ltd. purchased the carbon black unit of Evonik A.G. for €900 million. Orion operates 14 carbon black plants worldwide, including one majority-owned joint venture plant in China (Qingdao Evonik Chemicals) that Orion currently is seeking to wholly acquire. The sale is subject to ongoing Chinese government review and negotiations with Evonik and between Evonik and its joint venture partner. Orion is currently structured as a German limited liability company (Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung, or GmbH) headquartered in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

In 2013, Orion generated revenues of €1.3 billion based on volume sales of 968 kilotonnes of carbon black, including both specialty and rubber grades. According to the SEC filing, 34% of sales were in Europe, 24% were in North America, 24% were in Asia, 7% were in Brazil, and 11% were in Africa and elsewhere. According to its filing, Orion produces more than 280 specialty carbon black grades and about 70 rubber carbon black grades. According to the filing, Orion expanded its capacity in Korea in 2013, and is making incremental expansions in rubber black capacity at plants in the United States, Europe, and Brazil. Orion also commissioned an after-treatment facility for specialty carbon blacks in Germany in 2014.

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