ESSEN (dpa-AFX) - The RAG Foundation has reduced its stake in the specialty chemicals group Evonik to below 50 percent. A total of 23.4 million shares were placed at a price of €19.99 per share, Evonik's largest shareholder announced in Essen on Thursday. The gross issue proceeds amounted to around 468 million euros. The foundation now holds a stake of around 47 percent in the specialty chemicals group. The Bloomberg news agency had previously reported on the impending sale of shares. Evonik shares recently lost around 3.5 percent to €19.99.

In addition, the RAG-Stiftung has four outstanding bonds that can be exchanged for Evonik shares, the foundation added./mne/lew/jha/