Masan “Cashes Out” on Investments, Focusing on Consumer Retail

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The MMC Group will acquire 100% of H.C. Starck Holding (Germany) GmbH (“HCS”) from MHT for $134.5 million. The parties will also enter into a long-term tantalum and tungsten oxide offtake agreement.

Masan, meanwhile, will retain its ownership in Nyobolt, a UK-based company that provides fast-charging battery solutions using tungsten and niobium in the anode. Masan holds exclusive rights to a portion of the potential profits from the commercialization of “black mass” recycling technology developed by HCS.

HCS’s plant in Goslar, Germany

Proceeds from the transaction are expected to reduce MHT’s debt and contribute to the Masan Group’s goal of achieving a net debt/EBITDA ratio of ≤ 3.5x. The Masan Group anticipates recording a one-off profit of approximately $40 million from this transaction and benefiting from an additional $20-30 million in long-term net profit after tax.

Nyobolt is in the process of scaling up its operations and commercializing its products. In July 2023, Nyobolt successfully launched an electric vehicle concept with a six-minute charging time and signed principle agreements with two major commercial customers. The Masan Group stands to gain potential profits from the widespread commercialization of Nyobolt’s fast-charging battery technology using tungsten and niobium in the anode.

Danny Le, CEO of the Masan Group and Chairman of MHT, commented: “By focusing on our core strengths and maximizing value, we will restructure MHT into the most cost-efficient tungsten producer, optimizing cash flow. At the same time, we will continue to seek strategic solutions to allow the Masan Group to focus on developing our core consumer retail businesses.”

This transaction leverages the MMC Group’s expertise in the deep-processed tungsten value chain. The MMC Group will gain access to HCS’s production facilities in Europe, North America, and China, as well as its comprehensive tungsten scrap recycling platform, which boasts 90 patents worldwide and an additional 53 patents pending. This transaction marks the next step in the business collaboration between the parties and presents an opportunity to forge a comprehensive global tungsten alliance.

“We are delighted to continue our partnership with MHT,” said Kazuo Ohara, President of the Metalworking Solutions business of the MMC Group. “With our expertise and global network, we believe we can continue to contribute to the success of MHT and HCS. This transaction marks a significant milestone in our 2031 strategy to further develop our presence in the tungsten industry and contribute to the circular economy.”

UBS AG Singapore Branch acted as financial advisor to MHT. The transaction is expected to close by the end of 2024, subject to internal approval and the consent of relevant authorities.

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