North American operations top 2015 performers in LafargeHolcim portfolio

Sources: LafargeHolcim Ltd., Zurich; CP staff

With $5.84 billion in cement, aggregate and ready mixed concrete sales, North America led five LafargeHolcim regions in 2015, besting overall figures from Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America and Middle East Africa businesses.

In its inaugural annual report, the company credits continuing U.S. recovery, cost optimization and price management for solid North America region results. Cement and aggregate volumes increased as a whole across the U.S. and eastern Canada, offset partially by a) reduced demand in Texas and western Canada markets, where oil and commodity investments were under pressure; and, b) merger-driven divestments in some states. A double-digit increase in U.S. operating EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortization) stemmed from active cost, price and margin management.

LafargeHolcim formed in mid-2015 through a Lafarge Group and Holcim Ltd. stock-for-stock exchange. CEO Eric Olsen weighs in on year-end results and progress eight months into the merger: “We have exceeded all our 2015 commitments in terms of capex, synergies, and net debt reduction. Many of the key elements of the merger are now behind us. Our organization is in place; synergies will continue to gain momentum in 2016 with notably more than [$464 million] of incremental EBITDA synergies expected for this year; and we have taken decisive actions to further adjust and streamline costs, notably in the most difficult markets.

“Overall, we see demand in our markets growing 2-4 percent during 2016, [and] expect to see the combined effect of synergies, additional cost reductions and a strengthening pricing environment driving solid progress towards our 2018 objectives. With strict capital allocation discipline and maximization of cash flow, we are committed to maintaining solid investment grade rating and returning cash to shareholders.”

LafargeHolcim Ltd.
2015 Shipments and Sales
Material North America Company Total 
Cement   24 million tons 282 million tons
Aggregate 127 million tons 322 million tons  
Ready mixed 12.2 million yd. 74.3 million yd.
Net sales    $5.84 billion $30.3 billion
Operating EBITDA $1.15 billion $4.78 billion