This is not really a surprising development as the stock should easily be over 100 within a year if the forecasted earning are any where near accurate. What was surprising was that some institution or mutual fund was dumping so much of ASH stock recently, driving the price down.
Ashland - Hedge fund Jana Partners revealed a 7.5 percent stake in the chemicals producer. Jana called Ashland's shares undervalued in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing.
Agree, I am not sure about Jana, but the quality of its lube oil in my Honda convinced me to accumulate this one at much lower price. Yes, the shakeup in management is absolutely necessary to get ride of deadwoods. They need to perform much more deep cash flow analysis to figure out which business units should be out. This is exactly what Heinz did, unfortunately, Warren bought it.
Sounds like a good opportunity for Momentive to pick up Performance Materials. The old Foundry unit is already in a joint venture with Sud Chemie, which could be sold to them so there is no overlap with the phenolics business of Momentive. The unsaturated polyester business is a nice adjacency to Momentive's current chemistry portfolio. The vinyl ester business (combination of Ashland and former Dow vinyl esters) makes a good outlet for Momentive's epoxy. Ashland's adhesive business should also fold in well; or could be sold off separately if not wanted. Momentive's headquarters in downtown Columbus could be moved to Ashland's Dublin campus, which is half empty. There's additional real estate on that campus to add more buildings if necessary.