Gujarat Ambuja group to increase capacity

Gujarat Ambuja group to increase capacity
Published: 03 February 2006

The Gujarat Ambuja group is set to increase its combined annual cement production by 5Mt to 40Mt in three years. The group comprises Gujarat Ambuja Cements Ltd (GACL), Associated Cement Companies (ACC) and Gujarat Ambuja Eastern Ltd (ACEL).

Unveiling growth plans, Anil Singhvi, newly appointed managing director of Gujarat Ambuja Cements, today told Business Standard that the proposed capacity increase would not require much capital expenditure as it would be done through "cost-effective and efficiency-increasing measures".

"Gujarat Ambuja Cements Ltd and ACC will also improvise on the production process and go for higher blending. We can do with more clinker optimisation," he said.

Singhvi became the managing director after Narotam Sekhsaria relinquished the position due to "personal reasons". Sekhsaria is now non-executive chairman of the company.

The reshuffle came after Gujarat Ambuja Cements Ltd promoters, the Sekhsaria and Neotia families, sold a 14.8 per cent stake in the company to Holcim for Rs 2100 crore earlier this week. Holcim offered to buy another 20 per cent from the retail shareholders through an open offer to raise its stake to 34.8 per cent. The total outgo will be Rs 4570 crore in case the open offer is successful. Priced at Rs 90.64 a share, the offer will open on March 25 and close on April 13.

After the closure of the offer, Holcim will send three representatives to the Gujarat Ambuja Cements Ltd board. It is learnt that Markus Akermann, its CEO, and Paul Hugentobler, a member of the Swiss company’s executive committee, will join the Gujarat Ambuja Cements Ltd board.