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Business

Siemens shareholders make profit in Osram IPO

Germany’s Siemens engineering giant has publicly listed its Osram light bulb division after officially spinning off the loss-making unit. Siemens investors received the stock for free in the hope of stabilizing it.

Osram issued 104.7 million shares at 24 euros ($30.8) per share in its initial public offering (IPO), the German lighting company announced Monday.

The number of shares was equivalent to 80.5 percent of the company's total stock as parent company Siemens retained 17 percent and a Siemens-run pension fund kept 2.5 percent, Osram said.

The IPO valued Osram at about 2.5 billion euros - considerably less than the 3.23 billion euros Siemens had initially expected to earn from the listing.

On Monday, Osram briefly became the 31st listed company in the German blue chip DAX stock index for one day. This was the result of a spin-off from parent company Siemens. As of Tuesday, Osram will be listed in the MDax index of small cap German stocks.

Osram, which is the world's second largest light bulb maker, employs about 40,000 workers worldwide. As a result of stiff competition from global rivals General Electric, Samsung and Philips, the firm suffered a net loss of 378 million euros last year. It is currently undergoing a major restructuring program, cutting 8,000 jobs by 2014.

In 2011, parent company Siemens repeatedly called off the IPO due to volatile stock markets. It decided to hand its shareholders one Osram share for every 10 Siemens shares they hold, rather than launch a traditional public offering.    

Nevertheless, the Osram share price fell 3.8 percent to about 23 euros in early deals on Monday.

uhe/kms (Reuters, AFP, dpa)

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