Lafarge, UltraTech eye Jaiprakash units, India

Lafarge, UltraTech eye Jaiprakash units, India
Published: 15 June 2012

Aditya Birla Group and Lafarge are separately in talks to buy Jaiprakash Associates cement units, the Economic Times reported on Friday.

Officials from Lafarge and the Aditya Birla Group-controlled UltraTech Cement Ltd, Indias biggest cement producer, have completed preliminary talks and final bids are expected shortly, the newspaper said, citing sources with knowledge of the development.

Jaiprakash has spun off its cement units in the western state of Gujarat and southern state of Andhra Pradesh into a separate company, Jaypee Cement, which has a combined capacity of 9.8Mt, the newspaper said.

"We are exploring the option of getting a strategic investor into this company to monetise a part of our investment so the parent company can reduce debt," the paper quoted an official at Jaypee Cement as saying. Holcim , which has stakes in two Indian companies ACC Ltd and Ambuja Cements Ltd, was also believed to be in the race, the paper said.