* Price range set at 19 to 25 euros a share
* Offer period May 12 to May 22, debut May 23
* Dividend of 20 to 40 of profits planned from 2014/15 (adds CEO, FD quotes, valuation details, rivals, forecasts)
FRANKFURT, May 9 (Reuters) - German automotive and industrial supplier Stabilus is planning to sell shares worth up to 292 million euros ($401 million) in its market debut on May 23.
Stabilus, whose gas springs and hydraulic dampers are used to define how fast a trunk lid opens or to individually adjust the height of a swivel chair, will use the proceeds to pay down debt, Chief Executive Dietmar Siemssen said on Friday.
The firm is joining a swathe of others tapping equity markets as an economic recovery lifts investor confidence and stock markets. Global initial public offerings (IPOs) almost doubled in value in the first quarter of 2014.
Germany, however, has so far seen little activity. The 180 million euro market debut of 3D printer maker SLM Solutions on Friday was the first IPO in Europe’s largest economy this year.
Stabilus, which has a 70 percent market share in automotive gas springs, plans to sell new shares from a capital increase worth 65 million euros, while shares worth 227 million euros will be offered by private equity owner Triton.
To keep an edge over competitors, which include Brose and Edscha, Stabilus will continue to use 7.5 percent of revenues for capex, Siemssen said.
Investors can apply for shares from May 12 to May 22 in a price range of 19 to 25 euros.
Stabilus plans to pay out 20 to 40 percent of its profits as dividends from its fiscal year 2014/2015 starting in October, Chief Financial Officer Mark Wilhelms said.
In 2013, Stabilus posted a net income of 25.8 million euros and earnings before interest, tax amortization and depreciations
of 75.9 million euros on sales of 460 million euros.
“We see no reason why we should not post the same growth rates in the next 2-3 years that we have seen shown recently,” Wilhelms said.
Sales of the Koblenz-based company have grown an average annual 8.6 percent from 2010-2013, while adjusted EBIDTA increased by an annual 16.4 percent.
The planned listing will give Stabilus a market capitalization of up to 510 million euros.
That would value the company’s equity and debt at 6.7 times EBITDA, while German smallcap auto suppliers ElringKlinger and Norma trade at between 8.5-8.7 times their expected EBITDA, according to ThomsonReuters data.
Triton took control of Stabilus in 2010 after the company - burdened with debt by its private equity owner Paine & Partners - breached its loan covenants. Triton injected fresh equity and agreed to waive some of Stabilus’ debt which it had acquired.
Commerzbank and J.P. Morgan are organizing the IPO with the help of Societe Generale and UniCredit ($1 = 0.7214 Euros) (Reporting by Arno Schuetze; Editing by Kirsti Knolle and Elaine Hardcastle)