Yara says unit CEO quits, unit's IPO still under consideration

OSLO (Reuters) - Norwegian fertiliser maker Yara YAR.OL said on Tuesday the chief executive of its non-fertiliser business had resigned, but said plans to list the unit remained under consideration.

Yara said last June it was studying a possible initial public offering (IPO) of its industrial nitrogens business in a bid to streamline operations.

It appointed Yves Bonte to lead the new venture, which has yet to be named, but said on Tuesday Bonte had decided to leave the company to take over as CEO and chairman at Belgium’s Domo Chemicals.

Yara will update on the IPO plans on Feb. 7, in line with a promise to do so in early 2020, spokesman Thor Giaever said.

“There is no connection between the status of this process and Yves choosing to take this position,” he said.

The industrial nitrogens unit makes products used in a wide range of industries including explosives, cement and fuel additives.

Yara has estimated the unit generates 10-15% of its annual earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA).

In 2018, Yara’s EBITDA, excluding special items, stood at $1.5 billion.

Yara is expected to retain a significant stake in the carved-out business.

Reporting by Victoria Klesty; editing by Jason Neely