Agrium Inc. (TSX and NYSE: AGU) today confirmed that it will continue to execute its integrated business strategy, which is delivering record results and creating sustainable shareholder value, and that it will not spin off its Retail operations.
Agrium’s statement follows media reports that a hedge fund, JANA Partners, has suggested that Agrium should split the company into separate retail and wholesale businesses.
Agrium has increased its dividend nine-fold since December 2011, and recently announced a Cdn$900 million share repurchase program in connection with the sale of Viterra’s Medicine Hat nitrogen facility. The company achieved record sales, gross profit, EBITDA and net earnings in 2011 and again in the first half of 2012.
Agrium has been one of the best performing stocks in North America. The company’s share price has increased 43% year-to-date versus 12% for the S&P 500, and by 97% over the past three years. Agrium has also outperformed the S&P 500 and the company’s fertilizer peer group over the year-to-date and three year periods.