CRH announced a total of seven acquisitions and investment initiatives in the second half of 2013, taking full-year development activity to EUR0.69bn.
The company invested EUR0.22bn in the six months to the end of December last year, including one transaction in Asia, three under its American Materials division and a further three in its Distribution segment.
Commenting on the these developments, CRH’s new chief executive Albert Manifold said: “Development spend of almost EUR0.7bn in 2013 reflected our strategic focus on establishing leading positions in attractive markets.
"During the second half of the year, we continued to strengthen our cement operations in high growth markets in Ukraine, India and China. The second half also saw several attractive bolt-on transactions which expand our aggregates positions in a number of key markets in the United States. In our Distribution segments, which benefit from resilient RMI spend in developed markets, we were pleased to add four branches to our existing network of builders merchanting outlets in northern France, and a total of five branches in Texas, Florida and Georgia in the United States.”
Deals undertaken in the second-half included he acquisition of Zhongbei Cement Company in northeast China through CRH's Yatai Group Building Materials associate. Located in central Liaoning Province, Zhongbei has a clinker capacity of 3.6Mta and is able to grind 4.8Mta of cement and 1.5Mta of slag. "Liaoning is the largest cement market in northeast China and this acquisition further consolidates Yatai’s position as market leader in northeast China in addition to supporting the continued expansion of the downstream business around Liaoning’s capital, Shenyang," CRH said in a statement. The acquisition brings Yatai’s cement equivalent capacity to 32Mta.
In July, CRH also acquired selected assets of Lafarge in the Western Slopes region of western Colorado, USA. Comprising six ready-mix concrete plants and eight aggregates quarries, together with 17Mt of replacement reserves.