Economy & Market
Holcim-Lafarge merger will not affect ACC's brand identity
Swis based Holcim will be merging with French Cement and concrete giant Lafarge. The combination will make the entity the largest cement manufacturer in India. The so formed $60 billion company will surpass UltraTech in terms of capacity to become the largest cement manufacturer in India (and in the world). UltraTech with its recent acquistion of 4.8 million tonne plant of Jaypee Cement was the largest cement manufacturer with a total cpacity of 59 million tonne. The merger will add 8 million tonne capacity of Lafarge to the 57 million tonne capacity of Holcim, making it a 65 million tonne capacity company. Holcim has further plans to boost its capacity to 73 million tonnes by the end of next year. While UltraTech will be reaching 70 million tonne capacity by 2016. Holcim-Lafarge merger will account for around 19 per cent of installed capacity in India. UltraTech the second largest cement producer accounts for 16 per cent installed capacity in India. Holcim has significant stakes in Ambuja and 50 per cent stake in ACC. While speaking with shareholders at the company's 78th annual general meeting, N S Sekhsaria clarified that the brand ACC will remain intact and there is no question of ACC brand name changing to Lafarge."It's a merger of equals and the process will take about 16-18 months to complete," he added. Speaking about company performance, Sekhsaria said that bottomline ws affected by sluggish economic environment last year. He expects the worse is now behind and the company will be back on growth path in this year.