India’s Aditya Birla Group, which owns UltraTech Cement, is reported to be considering a bid for the assets of Holcim and Lafarge. Business Standard is reporting that the group has been working on the bid for a while and is interested in expanding its business overseas. Last week, Reuters reported that several cement companies are apparently teaming up to make a bid for the assets, including CRH and Cemex, and HeidelbergCement with Votorantim. More than 100 bids for separate or combined assets are expected when the deadline expires next week. In all, the assets up for sale are said to be worth €7 billion.
UltraTech Cement is one of the biggest cement companies in India with capacity greater than 60 million tpa and plans to expand to 70 million t by 2016. Although Holcim and Lafarge are divesting a number of assets, principally in Europe but also elsewhere in the world, there are no plans to sell any plants in India. Together, the companies’ combined Indian capacity would be around 57.5 million tpa of cement.
The merger is planned to complete in the first half of next year.
Edited from various sources by Katherine Guenioui
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