CRH is weighing up the possibility of investing in two of the world’s largest but also most underdeveloped economies, China and Russia.
The building materials giant’s acquisition pipeline remains busy and is expected to deliver up new deals this year to add to the EUR700m first-half investment spend.
But topping last year’s EUR1.6bn total might be a tall order.
Chief executive Liam O’Mahony visited China earlier this year to evaluate for himself how the group could exploit the obvious potential there is for expansion there. CRH is already in the Russian market but only in a tiny way.
The group acquired a small readymix concrete plant at St Petersburg as part of its acquisition of Finnish cement manufacturer Fincementi a couple of years back.
"It’s small, but it gives us a presence and an idea of what it’s like to do work in Russia," explained Mr O’Mahony.
He said CRH had been "looking at China" for a number of years.
"It’s a hugely exciting market and you’d feel you would like to be involved," he added.