Hydro confirms intention to sell Yara stake

February 16, 2004, 14:00 CET

Norsk Hydro ASA on Monday announced in a press release its intention, subject to market conditions, to proceed with the sale of its holding in Yara International ASA ("Yara"), previously known as Hydro Agri.

The shares to be sold by Hydro in the offering will amount to a minimum of 10% of Yara's outstanding shares, and up to its entire holding of 20% of Yara's outstanding shares. To contribute to a successful listing of Yara, it is intended to grant an option to the managers of the offering to cover over allotments of shares, and if the option is fully exercised, Hydro will sell its entire shareholding in Yara. It is intended that the offering will be completed on 25 March 2004 to coincide with the completion of the demerger and listing on the Oslo Stock Exchange.

The shares will be offered to institutional investors globally and retail investors in Norway. Full details of the offering will be included in a prospectus due to be published in March 2004. ABG Sundal Collier and UBS Investment Bank have been appointed to act as joint global co-ordinators and joint bookrunners of the offering. BMO Nesbitt Burns and Enskilda Securities have been appointed to act as co-lead managers in the offering.

The shares will be sold by Norsk Hydro ASA. Yara will not receive any proceeds from the offering.

Commenting on the announcement Thorleif Enger, Chief Executive Officer of Yara ASA, said: "Yara is the global No. 1 fertiliser company, with market leadership in all its key segments and a strong regional and global market presence. As a separately quoted company, Yara will focus on its strategy of profitable growth and cash generation."