AkzoNobel said on Friday it is selling its North American decorative paints division to PPG in a deal worth just over $1bn.
The company said in a statement it had made the decision to sell the unit following a successful four year turnaround. ‘AkzoNobel has made the strategic choice to focus its decorative paints business on key markets in Europe and its strong positions in high growth regions,’ the statement said.
The cash proceeds of some $875m will be used to invest in the company’s organic growth and reduce debt.
According to the Financieel Dagblad, the divestment will rid the company of a headache because investors and financial analysts have been calling for the sale for years.
The deal also marks the return to active duty of chief executive Ton Büchner who has been on sick leave for three months. The FD quoted Büchner as saying he is totally fit to get back to work. ‘I am bursting with energy and very pleased that I can start again,’ the paper quoted him as saying.