31 March 2009 01:36 [Source: ICIS news]
SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS news)--The $15m ($11.3m) consultant fee paid to Jon Huntsman to help settle a takeover lawsuit against Apollo was money “very well spent”, company chief executive Peter Huntsman said on Monday.
Settlement of the lawsuit resulted in a $1bn payment by Apollo to the US-based chemical producer.
The Huntsman board of directors “looked at the amount of effort and the amount of time and the unique ability that he [Jon Huntsman] had to negotiate and to bring that money in as quickly as he did and as cleanly as he did, and I think that it was money that was very well spent,” Peter Huntsman said on the sidelines of the 2009 International Petrochemical Conference.
Peter Huntsman is the son of company founder Jon Huntsman.
Peter Huntsman noted that Jon Huntsman retired from the company in 2000 and that the consultant fee was a one-time payment.
“If you look at our balance sheet today and you subtract a billion dollars worth of cash off that balance sheet - I’m not saying that the company would be out of business but there would be a lot of pain right now,” Peter Huntsman said.
He said that without the settlement the company probably would have had to lay off a large percentage of its workforce.
Instead, “we are in a mode to improve the company, to prosper,” Peter Huntsman said.
“If somebody were to bring this company a billion dollars today with the same terms and conditions that we had before - I would gladly pay them $15m,” Peter Huntsman said.
By December, Huntsman opted to accept a $1bn settlement, far under the $3bn the company initially sought from Apollo in the lawsuit.
Sponsored by the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA), the International Petrochemical Conference continues through Tuesday.
($1 = €0.75)
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