Albert Manifold, CRH

Albert Manifold, CRH

Irish-based CRH’s acquisition of parts of Lafarge and Holcim for €6.5 billion has been completed – with the exception of the Philippines, which is expected to close in the third quarter of this year.

Albert Manifold, CEO of CRH, said that with the completion of the deal, his company was a step closer to achieving its aim of becoming the world’s leading building materials company.

The deal comes in the wake of the merger of Lafarge and Holcim, as the two companies had to undertake a major divestment programme as part of gaining regulatory approval for their proposed merger. That merger was finalised last month.

In February, CRH reached an agreement to acquire certain assets from Lafarge and Holcim. The transaction more than doubles CRH’s cement production volumes and will further expand its aggregates and readymixed concrete portfolios.

As a result, CRH claimed to have become the third largest building materials player globally, and the world No 2 in aggregates.

The acquired assets generated revenue of €5.1 billion and EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes and amortization) of €752 million in 2014. CRH said it had identified annual net synergies of €90 million by year three.

The assets acquired by CRH include the largest cement producer in Central Canada, major cement and aggregates operations in Western Europe’s three largest markets – Great Britain, France and Germany – and leading cement and aggregates companies in the growth regions of Central and Eastern Europe.

In addition, CRH said it was acquiring entry positions in two emerging economic regions – Brazil and the Philippines.

CRH plans to integrate the newly-acquired assets, across over 685 locations in 11 countries, within a reporting structure directly overseen by Manifold and a senior operational team. Employee numbers at CRH will increase by 15,000 people to 91,000.

Manifold said, “The businesses we are acquiring, which represent an excellent geographic fit with CRH’s existing operations, are all strong performers in their respective areas. The integration of these high quality assets, which we have acquired at an attractive valuation and at the right point of the cycle, will strengthen our presence in a number of key markets as well as providing new platforms for strategic growth.

“The additional scale will help us to improve efficiency, speed up innovation and provide an even better service to our customers.”

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