Siemens Energy will be listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange for the first time this Monday. The energy company was spun off from Siemens AG just last Friday. It is the largest spin-off of a corporate division that has ever occurred in Germany. With a market value of more than 20 billion euros, the newcomer is a candidate for the German Dax share index. In the coming year, Berlin would again have a company from the top stock market league.
Siemens announced its intention to separate the traditional energy division back in spring 2019. Germany’s industrial icon has actually cut its roots. Siemens AG, founded in Berlin in 1847, initially sold 55 percent. Wind farms, gas-fired power plants and power transmission should in future only be a capital investment for the Munich-based company, Siemens no longer wants to exert any commercial influence. At the appropriate stock exchange prices, further shares will be sold, according to the group management.
The previous Siemens shareholders, including Blackrock, the state fund of Qatar and thousands upon thousands of small shareholders, will receive one Energy share for every two Siemens shares. A poisoned gift: Experts expect the price of Siemens shares to fall accordingly. Siemens boss Joe Kaeser presented a 400-page spin-off report in May. With the “spin-off” of Energy, “a major milestone will be reached in the realignment that is preparing the Siemens companies for the enormous technological transformations”.
Neue Siemens AG, with only 300,000 employees, two thirds of whom work abroad, is to concentrate on digital industry, intelligent infrastructure and mobility. The medical technology division was listed on the stock exchange in 2018. With this concentration on a few areas, Kaeser, who is about to leave, wants to prevent a decline like the one that the supposedly too broad-based competitor General Electric (GE) is going through.
In contrast, yield-oriented investors are rather skeptical about the future of the new stock corporation. Even to the umbrella organization of critical shareholders, it seems completely a mystery how Energy will position itself in the energy markets in the future and at the same time meet the goals of the Paris climate protection agreement. “So the impression remains that the spin-off is just one way of separating from a low-yielding corporate unit,” said the counter-motion at the virtual group general meeting in July.
Christian Bruch, CEO of Siemens Energy AG, naturally sees it differently. Since the beginning of September, he has been wooing investors who should buy energy shares after the IPO. Most recently, his division had reported a net loss of 1.5 billion euros. Bruch now promises a “transformation”. All work processes should be carefully examined, profitability must increase by billions. However, he will not announce anything concrete until the beginning of 2021 at the earliest and after consulting the works council.
At the same time, the group should become greener. “The question is not whether we will get out of the coal, but when and how,” said Bruch. Siemens has been criticized by environmental activists not least because of a controversial coal project in Australia since the end of last year. At the same time, Bruch relies on »the market opportunities of the energy transition«. Siemens Gamesa, one of the world’s largest wind turbine manufacturers, is part of the new group.
“We have to actively and more intensively shape the public and political debate about the energy transition as a company,” said CEO Bruch of the “Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung” recently in an interview. That was also the decisive factor for Berlin as the location of the future headquarters. In addition to the federal capital, Munich, Erlangen and Mülheim were examined as potential company headquarters. Bruch preferred to be very close to the associations and politics.