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Italcementi integration continues apace

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World Cement,

The integration of Italcementi’s business has proceeded faster than expected, according to HeidelbergCement’s latest annual report, allowing the company to record synergy savings of €155 million for the full year. On the back of this, the target for total synergy savings from the merger has been raised to €470 million.

“The rapid progress makes us very confident,” said Dr Bernd Scheifele, Chairman of HeidelbergCement’s Managing Board. “We have therefore increased the synergy target.”

Since taking control of the Italian company in July, HeidelbergCement has replaced the management of all of Italcementi’s major national organizations and implemented its management philosophy and bonus system. Some national headquarters that were deemed surplus to requirements have also been closed with their functions consolidated at the company’s headquarters.

In total, 1870 jobs had been cut worldwide by the end of 2016, the company said, compared to the expected figure of just under 500. Overall, 2500 jobs are affected by the restructuring measures.

Consolidation of the two businesses will remain a “point of focus” for the company in 2017, Scheifele said. The company remained “cautiously optimistic about 2017,” Scheifele added, on the back of good and stable economic development in its key markets, including North America, the UK, Germany and northern Europe, and Australia, which account for around 60% of its revenues.

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