The leading cement groups
In response to the emergence of new regional producers and the large Chinese cement groups, other major players in the cement industry are forging new alliances to strengthen their market positions and increase profitability. The industry’s biggest ever tie-up between Lafarge and Holcim, completed in July 2015, is seeing repercussions across the world and will result in the elevation of CRH into the top tier.
Two Chinese groups count among the largest cement producers in the world. China National Building Material (CNBM) Company is the world leader in terms of both capacity and production. Its capacity reached 400Mta in 2014 as production volumes rose by 2.1 per cent to 291.19Mt, following a 29.1 per cent increase in 2013. Turnover was 3.7 per cent higher at CNY122.01bn (US$19.66bn) while the net profit improved by 2.8 per cent to CNY5.92bn. The South West Cement subsidiary did best with a 7.8 per cent rise to 82.16Mt, while the South Cement unit fared the worst with a 1.5 per cent decline to 116.75Mt.
The second-largest Chinese cement group, Anhui Conch Cement, saw turnover rise by 9.9 per cent to CNY60.76bn and net profit was 17 per cent ahead at CNY10.98bn. Clinker production rose by 11 per cent to 197Mt and cement output was 18 per cent higher at 219Mt. Anhui Conch Cement now has capacities of 212Mta of clinker and 264Mta of cement. These figures are anticipated to increase by 11.5Mta (clinker) and 20.8Mta (cement) in 2015 as the company expands into Indonesia and Myanmar.