CRH plc, the Irish building materials producer, announced the finalization of Lafarge acquisition.
The transaction is part of a global integration of Lafarge SA and Holcim Ltd shares for a total of EUR 6.5 billion. CRH will incorporate over 685 units across 11 countries, adding 15,000 employees and doubling their capacity for cement production.
Shareholders approved the transaction in March, and the European Commission gave its accord in April.
In Romania CRH takes over Lafarge’s assets, meaning two cement factories in Medgidia and Hoghiz, a grinding station, 15 cement stations and four mobile cement stations. No factories will be closed and there will be no layoffs as a result of the takeover.
The Irish company is already present locally with two building supplies companies – Elpreco and Ferrobeton.
Holcim and Lafarge announced last April that they will merge their global operations. In Romania the merger has to be approved by the Competition Council.
The Romanian cement market, which is estimated at around EUR 600-700 million (7 million tonnes), is already a concentrated one. Each of the local subsidiaries of the two companies covers about one third of the market. Carpatcement, part of German HeidelbergCement AG, the next biggest competitor of the future LafargeHolcim, has a similar market share of about 30 percent. The merger of the local subsidiaries of Lafarge and Holcim would further hamper competition on a market which is already closely monitored because of this issue, said the head of Romania’s Competition Council, Bogdan Chiritoiu, last year.