HeidelbergCement AG, Germany, envisions $1.8 billion to $2.4 billion in acquisitions over the next three years, backed by $1.2 billion to $1.8 billion in non-core asset sales, plus savings realized from continuous efficiency improvements across global cement, aggregates and ready mixed concrete businesses. Driving those improvements at the Lehigh Portland Cement parent company are digital platform implementation in operations, maintenance, logistics and purchasing.
HeidelbergCement outlined new Vision 2020 targets during last month’s Capital Markets Day 2018 in Bergamo, Italy, home to a global research & development center and Italcementi S.p.A. headquarters. Pointing to the successful integration of Italcementi, acquired in mid-2016, along with the raising of dividends to record levels, HeidelbergCement Chairman Dr. Bernd Scheifele noted, “Our model is based on the most advanced vertical integration, a simple structure focused on three core business lines and a de-centralized, lean organization with strong local teams. We have a compelling strategy in place, which clearly differentiates us from our competitors, and remain the industry leader in business excellence and cost efficiency. HeidelbergCement is well positioned to capitalize on its strengths in the current business cycle.”
The company intends to further improve its asset base by active portfolio management. On the one hand, it follows a selective merger and acquisition strategy to strengthen existing cement, aggregate and concrete businesses by increasing vertical integration. On the other, management seeks to reduce complexity and risk by disposing of non-core operations, market positions with high risks or limited growth potential and idle assets. HeidelbergCement advised Capital Markets Day participants that it anticipates organic EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization) growth to hover 5 percent annually through 2020.
SCANCEM VETERAN LEADS GRANITE CONSTRUCTION
California-based heavy/civil contractor and regional construction materials producer Granite Construction has named Claes Bjork as chairman and director, succeeding the retiring William Powell. Bjork served as chief executive officer of construction giant Skanska AB, Sweden, from 1997-2002, and had held various executive positions within the company beforehand, including chairman of the Scancem Cement subsidiary.
“Mr. Bjork’s experience as a global infrastructure leader, his deep industry knowledge, as well as his deep understanding of [our] business and competitive environment made him the ideal candidate to serve as chairman of the board,” says Granite President and CEO James Roberts.