Oslo, Norway and Zug, Switzerland, January 28, 2016 ― EuroChem Group AG (“EuroChem”), a leading global agrochemical company, and Agrinos AS (“Agrinos”), a global leader in biological crop nutrition products, have today jointly signed an equity investment and two strategic collaboration agreements.
As part of the equity investment agreement, EuroChem will subscribe for new ordinary shares in Agrinos in a private placement. Under the terms, EuroChem will acquire 22,250,000 new shares in Agrinos with an additional option to acquire up to 32,633,333 new shares over the next 24 months. The private placement with EuroChem is backed by Agrinos’ long-term strategic investors and existing shareholders, Manor Investment SA and Havfonn AS, who will respectively acquire 17,800,000 new shares and 4,450,000 new shares.
The proceeds from the investments will be used to support the execution of Agrinos’ business plan, which includes focused growth in core geographies and research and development efforts in second generation biological crop input products.
In addition, EuroChem and Agrinos have entered two multi-year strategic collaboration agreements. The first collaboration agreement is to market, distribute and sell Agrinos High Yield Technology® (HYT®) products by leveraging EuroChem’s distribution network and market expertise. The second agreement is for the research and development of new solutions for next generation fertilizer products by integrating biological and chemical crop nutrition technologies.
Rudolf von Plettenberg, Head of Premium Products & Development at EuroChem, commented: “These agreements come as we seek to further expand EuroChem’s product portfolio with innovative specialty products and environmentally friendly crop enhancing solutions. We see this partnership with Agrinos as a major milestone in EuroChem’s strategic development.”
Ry Wagner, CEO of Agrinos, added: “This partnership enables us to build upon complementary strengths and to capitalize on the synergies between Agrinos’ biological crop input products and EuroChem’s diverse portfolio of fertilizers. EuroChem’s investment in Agrinos provides an exciting new platform for collaboration on the research and development of next generation microbial and crop nutrition products, as well as expanded distribution opportunities. Combined, we anticipate the multiple benefits of this partnership will add value for our customers and partners through improved crop productivity and sustainability.”
Jean Baptiste Oldenhove, Managing Director of Manor, stated: “The transaction brings long term financial stability and a strong strategic partner to Agrinos and its stakeholders. It is another important transformational step for Agrinos and for plant nutrition in general. Sustainability of companies and business practices are central to Manor’s mission”.
The share issue and private placement are subject to approval by Agrinos shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting to be held on or about 5 February 2016 (the “EGM”).
This announcement contains forward looking statements concerning future events, these statements are based on current EuroChem and Agrinos information and assumptions.
About EuroChem Group AG
EuroChem is a leading global agrochemical company, producing primarily nitrogen and phosphate fertilizers, as well as certain organic synthesis products and iron ore. The Group is vertically integrated with activities spanning from mining and hydrocarbons extraction to fertilizer production, logistics, and distribution. EuroChem is currently developing two sizeable potash deposits in Russia with its VolgaKaliy and Usolskiy Potash projects. Headquartered in Zug, Switzerland, the Group operates production facilities in Belgium, Lithuania, China, Kazakhstan and Russia and employs more than 23,000 people globally.
About Agrinos AS
Agrinos is a global leader in biological crop nutrition products committed to improving the productivity and sustainability of modern agriculture. Agrinos’ range of High Yield Technology (HYT®) products helps farmers to practice profitable agriculture by providing increased crop productivity, improved efficiency of conventional fertilizer and a reduced environmental footprint.
Certified as organic and based on Agrinos’ proprietary technology, the HYT products provide benefits by strengthening the soil-based microbial ecosystem, stimulating crop development at key points in the growth cycle and boosting natural plant resistance to pathogens and threats. With solutions for a variety of crop categories, the technology comprising the HYT products has demonstrated its value in third-party trials in key agricultural regions worldwide.
About Manor Investment SA
Manor is a long term investor in the field of natural resource efficiency. As a private industrial company, Manor provides long-term development capital to entrepreneurs and industrial projects. Manor’s objective is to operate from a select number of platform companies all geared towards a better and more efficient use of energy and natural resources. Apart from its involvement in Agrinos, Manor is already active in clean energy in France, Sweden and Austria
About Havfonn AS
Havfonn is a privately held company by the Bergesen family. Havfonn is a long term investor in renewable energy, industry and real estate with an international presence, and is committed to developing sustainable businesses as an integral part of our long term mission.
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