Lafarge-Holcim merger: No immediate bearing on Malaysian business

Visual from the company website

Malaysia’s largest cement supplier Lafarge Malaysia Bhd said the merger between its parent company and Holcim will not have any bearing on the local operations in the foreseeable future.

CEO Bradley Mulroney said the Malaysian operations was not affected by the the merger between parent company Lafarge SA and Swiss cement producer Holcim Ltd, at least not immediately.

“It is the parent company that is merging so there is no comment from our local perspective. At this stage, there is no bearing on Lafarge Malaysia’s business,” he said at the CCI France Malaysia’s 25th anniversary celebration.

“Our major shareholder is merging with Holcim at their own level and at this stage, that is it. It really does not impact us and decisions about (any impact) will be taken at a much later date,” he added.

Lafarge Malaysia is 51 per cent owned by Lafarge SA.

However, should the impact of the merger trickle down to both Lafarge and Holcim’s existing operations in Malaysia, there would be a positive impact, a research house said.

Malaysian bank-backed research house Hong Leong Investment Bank Research said that the merger between the giant cement companies Lafarge SA and Holcim Ltd will further cement Lafarge Malaysia’s leading position in the domestic market, assuming it eventually acquires Holcim’s estimated 4 per cent market share in west Malaysia.

The research house said it was positive news that the $44 billion merger, first announced in April 2014, was back on track after it was stalled when Holcim sought better financial terms as well as questioned whether Lafarge’s management should be in charge.

Of Lafarge Malaysia’s expansion in Malaysia and Singapore, Mulroney said there were no plans for acquisitions. “We have an extremely good network here and our job is to leverage off that network. Organic growth is by far the most efficient and cost-effective way of growing,” Mulroney said.

Lafarge SA and Holcim Ltd announced in mid-March that their respective boards had agreed to make Lafarge SA chief executive officer Bruno Lafont non-executive co-chairman of the merged company, together with Holcim’s chairman Wolfgang Reitzle.

Post merger, the group will be known as LafargeHolcim.

In a press statement on its website, Lafarge noted that the group and Holcim have received clearance from the Competition Commission of India (CCI) for their proposed merger. “A package of asset divestments has been agreed with the CCI which includes 1 cement plant and 1 grinding station from Lafarge (with a total of approximately 5 million tonnes annual cement capacity) in Eastern India,” the statement said.

India is an important market for the future LafargeHolcim Group with a balanced portfolio in cement, aggregates, and ready-mix concrete. The combined group will have a cement capacity of around 68 million tonnes in India.

Other cement players in Malaysia include Tasek Corp Bhd, Hume Cement Sdn Bhd, YTL Cement Bhd and Cement Industries of Malaysia Bhd.

Also Read:

GIC might bid for Holcim-Lafarge assets

Jardine C&C buys 25% in Thailand’s Siam City Cement for $615m

 

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.