K+S Aktiengesellschaft has signed an agreement with EuroChem regarding the sale of K+S Nitrogen, one of the leading suppliers of nitrogenous fertilizers.

The transaction, with an enterprise value of EUR 140 million for K+S Nitrogen, is likely to be closed at the end of the second quarter of 2012. The effective economic date of the transfer is 31 March 2012. The sale is subject to a number of factors, including approval by the EU antitrust authority.

For K+S, the sale will generate a book profit of around EUR 70 to 80 million, depending on the net earnings of K+S Nitrogen generated by the time the transaction is closed together with other effects. From now on, K+S Nitrogen will be stated as a “discontinued operation”. In financial year 2011, K+S Nitrogen generated revenues of EUR 1,156.8 million and operating earnings EBIT I of EUR 69.4 million.

“We are pleased to have found a well-suited new owner for K+S Nitrogen in EuroChem. Against the backdrop of the recently concluded sale of the fertilizer activities of BASF in Antwerp, the sale to EuroChem is the best option from the perspective of K+S, but also of the employees of K+S Nitrogen,” says Norbert Steiner, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of K+S Aktiengesellschaft. “I would like to express my particular thanks to the employees of K+S Nitrogen for their extraordinary commitment in recent years,” Steiner continues.

EuroChem CEO Dmitry Strezhnev commented: “K+S Nitrogen is a natural extension to our recently acquired EuroChem Antwerpen operations. This acquisition provides us with a world-renowned platform while further securing our competitiveness in key markets worldwide. We welcome the highly skilled staff of K+S Nitrogen and our clients and partners may rest assured that the high level of service they have grown accustomed to with K+S Nitrogen will be maintained.”

The strategy of the K+S Group provides for growth in the Potash and Magnesium Products and the Salt business segments in particular and for focusing management resources and financial means on this accordingly. Against this background, K+S had sold the business activities of COMPO to the investment company Triton last year.