Lafarge and Holcim have announced reorganisation plans ahead of their proposed merger. These plans have been designed ‘to create a lean organisation with empowered countries, regional management platforms, and group functions for the combined company’. As such, LafargeHolcim would be balanced between ‘a decentralised structure and strong central functions,’ with the later organised around countries, regions and corporate functions. There will be an equivalent number of personnel in the central functions in France and Switzerland. The merged company’s research and development centre would be based in L’Isle d’Abeau, near Lyon in France.
The reorganisation project would comprise 380 net job losses at Lafarge and 120 at Holcim. The newly merged company would employ around 115 000 people.
The 120 or so job losses at Holcim would be group functions in Switzerland. The company will launch a social consultation process with employee representatives in order to reduce the impact on roles that are affected by the reductions.
At Lafarge, 166 of the 380 net job losses would be in France (Paris and Lyon), and the rest would take place at the group’s worldwide locations (i.e., in sites located in Atlanta, Beijing, Cairo, Kuala Lumpur, Montreal and Vienna). Lafarge presented the reorganisation plans to employee representatives on 19 May. Social support measures will be negotiated with employee representatives, and these will mostly include solutions based on internal mobility, early retirement and (in France) voluntary departures. The planned merger would not impact employment at Lafarge’s operational functions in France, which account for 4500 staff.
The merger is expected to close in July 2015, subject to the acceptance of Holcim’s public exchange offer by Lafarge shareholders. The reoganisation plans would take effect in early 2016, following the completion of all relevant social consultations in France and Switzerland.
Adapted from press releases by Louise Fordham
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