CRH spends €470m on acquisitions in H1

Most of the deals were in north America, with construction group reporting a “significant expansion” of its Canadian business

Construction group CRH completed 17 acquisition and investment initiatives during the first half of 2013. Together with its acquisition of Cementos Lemona in Spain (acquired as part of the Uniland asset swap announced in February) and net deferred consideration payments, the group's development spend for the first half of 2013 to approximately €470 million.

Proceeds to date from divestments and disposals, including the Uniland swap, came to approximately €185 million.

Myles Lee, CRH chief executive, said that the group has continued to develop its portfolio across its six main business segments so far in 2013.

“In particular, the acquisition in March of Expocrete, a major concrete products business in the attractive western Canada market, represents a significant expansion of CRH’s Canadian operations. It brings total group annualised sales in Canada to €315 million and complements our existing North American architectural products business,” he said.


In the US, CRH completed 12 transactions at a total value of €128 million. Seven of these deals, including Cemex in Salem, Oregon, were in the materials division, "significantly strengthening" CRH's position by securing additional reserves as well as yielding synergies in purchasing, logistics and production. The remaining deals were in the product and distribution division, most notably the aforementioned Expocrete, as well as Eldersburg Supply, a distributor of gypsum wallboard, metal studs and acoustical ceiling tiles, which CRH acquired in April with a view to improving its market position and to "unlock operational synergies".

In Europe, in addition to the Cementos Lemona deal in Spain and a related cement importation business in Britain, CRH's European segments completed seven transactions at a total cost of €58 million. These deals include the acquisition in April of the assets of Echo, a manufacturer of pre-stressed hollow core elements operating two plants in the Liège region and serving the Belgian residential market, and the readymixed concrete, aggregates and block operations of Cemex in Northern Ireland, which were acquired in May.

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan is a writer specialising in personal finance and is the Home & Design Editor of The Irish Times