EU Approves Lafarge-Holcim Merger To Form Cement Titan

EU Approves Lafarge-Holcim Merger To Form Cement Titan

EU anti-trust regulators on Monday cleared the merger of French giant Lafarge with Swiss rival Holcim to form the world's biggest cement group after each sold elements of their enterprise to satisfy competition concerns.

"Acquisition of Lafarge by Holcim is subject to conditions. The merger can proceed," EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said on Twitter, adding the move was "good for growth".

The European Commission said it allowed the merger to go ahead given that Lafarge divest companies in Germany, Romania and Britain and that Holcim do the identical in France, Hungary, Slovakia, Spain and the Czech Republic.

Holcim and Lafarge announced in April they were merging to create the world's biggest cement group worth forty billion euros ($55 billion), with an eye on booming construction in rising markets.

The deal, a major event within the world development trade, relies on the offer of one Holcim share for one Lafarge share.

The new company shall be called LafargeHolcim and "could have a singular position in 90 international locations and shall be evenly balanced between creating nations and nations with robust progress," the firms said in a joint statement.

They highlighted the match of their activities since Lafarge has a powerful presence in Africa and Holcim in Latin America.

However they each have big and competing pursuits in Europe.

The European Commission said it had had issues that the "transaction, as originally notified, would have" harm competitors in lots of markets in Europe however that the 2 firms later "committed to divesting a lot of the operations the place their actions overlap".

"With the remedies, we have now ensured that the creation of an increased international footprint of the group is not going to come at the expense of competition in the EU," Vestager said in a statement.

"And this is the positive instance as we speak's approval provides to other companies which will have global ambitions," she said.

The Commission added that the two companies won't be allowed to finish their deal till it has approved the businesses who will buy the belongings put up for sale.

- 'Nice satisfaction' -

Figures showed that the new giant will employ 136,000 individuals, and have annual sales of 32 billion euros and undermendacity profits of 6.5 billion euros.

The deal would generate economies of scale of 1.4 billion euros over three years.

LafargeHolcim might be in a strong position as a supplier of cement, a key fundamental materials in construction.

Building provide firms have been expanding in emerging international locations the place they see big opportunities for progress as they face sluggish situations in the European development industry.

Shares within the new firm shall be listed on stock exchanges in Paris and Zurich.

"We welcome with great satisfaction the commission's positive choice," said Wolfgang Reitzle, the future chairman of LafargeHolcim, and Bruno Lafont, the future chief executive officer, in a joint statement.

"Due to this approval, we remain more than ever on the fitting path to finalise the merger in the first half of 2015."

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