K+S Decides to Sell Americas Unit

13.03.2020 -

German potash producer K+S has decided to sell its Americas operating unit. The decision is part of moves announced last December to rapidly generate value and reduce debt.

The company has mandated banks to sell the business, which includes the salt operations in North and South America. There are no plans to sell shares in the new potash mine in Bethune, Canada. K+S expects to sign a sales agreement before the end of this year.

“The sale of our strong Americas salt business is a decisive step in setting the course for the future development of K+S. After intensive examination, it is the best option to achieve the urgently required reduction of the company's debt,” said CEO Burkhard Lohr

Several companies are reported to be interested in the business with initial talks already being held.

The sale will be accompanied by a comprehensive realignment of K+S, with all the company’s sites expected to achieve a sustainable positive free cash flow. “Following the repositioning of K+S, we will be focusing on the expansion of the highly profitable fertilizer specialties business in the subsequent growth phase,” Lohr said.

The Kassel-headquartered group expects that the implementation of all measures will reduce debt by in excess of €2 billion by the end of 2021. As part of the package of measures, K+S sold in January its Swiss waste management subsidiary K+S Entsorgung (Schweiz) to compatriot  chemical distributor Thommen-Furler for a price in the “lower single-digit million euro range”.