(By Balachander) Illinois Tool Works Inc. (NYSE:ITW) is selling a 51 percent interest in its decorative surfaces business to private equity firm Clayton, Dubilier & Rice (CD&R) for cash proceeds of roughly $1.05 billion.
The Glenview, Illinois-based maker of industrial products and equipment will retain an ongoing ownership stake in the business.
Under the terms of the agreement, the decorative surfaces business will become a new, independent company operating as Wilsonart International Holdings LLC in which a fund managed by CD&R will make an equity investment of $395 million.
The decorative surfaces segment, with revenue of $1.1 billion in 2011, is engaged in the manufacture of laminate and work surface products for the construction market. It operates under the Wilsonart, Resopal, Polyrey and Arborite brands.
ITW's chief executive David Speer said the transaction will allow the company "to focus more resources on our core platforms as well as retain a share in the value of the business as global construction end markets improve over the coming years."
The latest tranasaction adds to CD&R's record of creating independent businesses from former divisions of larger corporations including, most recently, Hussmann International, formerly a division of Ingersoll Rand, and Atkore International, formerly Tyco International's Electrical and Metal Products business.
ITW backed its earnings per share from continuing operations forecast of $1.03 to $1.11 for the third quarter.
The deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter.
ITW shares rose 1.08 percent to trade at $58.22 on Thursday.