(Netherlands) – Shareholders circular recommends proposed separation of Lighting business from Royal Philips to fund HealthTech strategy through stock market launch.
Philips has published the shareholders circular providing a further specification and explanation of the proposal to approve the separation of the Lighting business from Royal Philips through an Initial Public Offering (IPO).
In a letter to shareholders Jeroen van der Veer, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and Frans van Houten, President and Chief Executive Officer stated: “As part of the next decisive phase of our multi-yearAccelerate! transformation program, we announced our plan to capitalize on fundamental market changes and new growth opportunities by separating Philips into two market-leading independent companies focused on the vast opportunities in health technology (HealthTech) and lighting solutions, respectively. We believe that it is the right time to pursue this decision.
“Our goal is to become the global leader in HealthTech and shape the future of the industry, which we plan to achieve by building on the strenghts of our Healthcare and Consumer Lifestyle businesses. At the same time, we will establish a separate Lighting Solutions company that will be better able to expand its global leadership position and capture adjacent market opportunities. Both companies will be well-positioned to drive profitable growth, ultimately generating more value for our customers, employees and shareholders.
We intend to create the Lighting Solutions company by separating the Lighting business from Royal Philips. The purpose of this Shareholders Circular is to provide shareholders with more information on the proposed separation and to explain why we consider the separation to be in the best interests of Royal Philips and its shareholders.”
The first section of the circular, ‘The next strategic step: two independent companies’, explains that “… by establishing a stand-alone Lighting Solutions company, the Lighting business and management team will be better positioned to capture growth opportunities, be closer to customers, adapt more quickly to evolving customer needs, and enable decisive investments in the future of lighting.”
In the second section, ‘Approach to the separation’, it states that the most likely course of action is an IPO of the Lighting Solutions company in the first half of 2016. Its LED components business, Lumileds, will not be part of the IPO and instead will be sold together with its Automative Lighting business.
It goes on to say, “In light of the size of the Lighting business, Royal Philips will probably initially offer only a minority interest in the IPO. This initial divestment is expected to be followed by one or more secondary offerings, or by one or more other transactions, with the aim of full divestment of the Lighting Solutions company over time.
“At the same time, we will continue to carefully review alternatives (including, but not limited to, private sale) in light of all relevant circumstances, such as general market conditions and developments in the Lighting business as well as in the lighting industry.”