Reuters reports that the world’s two largest cement makers, France’s Lafarge and Switzerland’s Holcim, are in advanced talks to merge into a company with a stock market value of over $50 billion and combined sales of over $40 billion, in what would be the industry’s biggest ever tie-up.
In identical statements the two companies said the discussions are “based on principles consistent with a merger of equals”. The companies said no agreement had yet been reached and there was no guarantee of a deal, but there was a “strong complementarity” and “cultural proximity” between the groups.
Geographically, Lafarge and Holcim could complement each other well. Lafarge has a strong presence in Africa and the Middle East, while Holcim is strong in Latin America. Both companies have significant and overlapping capacity in France, Germany, Spain, Czech Republic, Romania and Serbia.
Lafarge employs around 65,000 workers in 64 countries and Holcim has about 71,000 employees in 70 countries.