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Ellen Kullman

DuPont to Spin Off Titanium Dioxide Unit

DuPont (NYSE:DD) said on Thursday it will spin off its titanium dioxide unit into a separately traded public company within 18 months, bowing to intense pressure from Wall Street to divest the volatile business.Spinning off the performance chemicals business, which also sells refrigerants, would allow DuPont to focus more on specialty materials and agriculture, two growth areas.The unit makes titanium dioxide, a popular pigment found in products ranging from car paint to sunscreen. Prices for the product, which alone accounted more than a fifth of the company's 2012 revenue, have been on a roller-coaster for the past several years, wildly affecting DuPont's profit and stock price."Investors love the business on the way up," DuPont Chief Executive Ellen Kullman said in a 2012 interview with Reuters about the unit. "But investors don't like the turns. Turns are hard to predict in the Ti02 market."Investors have agitated for months about DuPont's low stock price compared with those of riv...

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