Mexican cement maker Cemex has won conditional approval from the US Federal Trade Commission to proceed with its planned US$5.8bn purchase of Britain’s RMC Group PLC. Approval from US trade officials is just one of many regulatory hurdles Cemex must clear before completing its takeover of RMC, a move that will vastly strengthen Cemex’s foothold in Europe. The Federal Trade Commission said final approval of the mega-merger hinges on Cemex’s sale of RMC’s ready-mix concrete business in Tucson, Arizona to a buyer approved by the commission within six months.
The commission said it would consider appointing a monitor to oversee the sale if Cemex fails to sell RMC’s Tucson assets. The sale is seen as necessary to avoid Cemex gaining an unfair competitive advantage in the Arizona building materials marketplace. Cemex already is one of North America’s biggest cement companies, with a production capacity of 14.2Mt