"Now we're looking at the contract negotiations," she said, adding that the process could take a while. "But we're on the home stretch."

The superabsorbents division recently made annual sales of around 900 million euros ($968 million).

Evonik is also planning to sell its larger C4 division, which last made annual sales of around 2 billion euros and core profit of around 200 million euros, though Schuh said that process has not started and a sale would not happen this year.

"Selling C4 in the current economically difficult environment would very likely not result in the desired sales proceeds," she said.

($1 = 0.9293 euros)

(Reporting by Christoph Steitz; Editing by Mike Harrison)