The battle to buy a majority share in Holcim Group’s cement companies in India has become intense, with JSW Group lining up plenty of private equity firms and lenders to help finance the transaction. The decision comes after the Adani Group, led by billionaire Gautam Adani, reached a similar agreement with several international lenders.
According to media sources, JSW Group has received commitments for funding of up to $11 billion from private equity companies and lenders. Carlyle Group, Advent International, Apollo Private Equity Investment, and others had expressed interest in bidding for Holcim’s twin properties, Ambuja Cements and ACC, in a combined bid.
The media sources revealed that many Indian and global lenders have offered help in the form of loans if needed.
About five large private equity firms have shown interest in the purchase, and assurances from seventy-eight banks and other institutions are also on the table.
Many of the bidders’ teams have already arrived in Zurich, anticipating the submission of the proposal’s final outlines.
The offer amount is now estimated to be about $10 billion, but with so many contenders in the mix, it might potentially reach to $13 billion.
Ambuja Cements has a 31.45 million tonne per annum (mtpa) installed capacity, with the retail segment accounting for over 80% of sales.
ACC, for its part, has a cement manufacturing capacity of 34.45 mtpa, bringing the overall production capacity of these enterprises to 65.9 mtpa.
JSW Group planned to boost its installed capacity to 25 mtpa by FY24, from 16 mtpa at the end of March. If the deal goes through, the group would become the country’s second largest cement producer, with a total capacity of 81.9 mtpa.
The same is for Adani Group, which does not have a cement business but is reported to be exploring into it.
Holcim owns 63.1% of Ambuja Cements and 4.48% of ACC, whereas Ambuja, Holcim’s flagship firm in India, owns 50.05% of ACC.
Ambuja Cements has a market capitalization of Rs 76,159.42 crore, whereas ACC has a market capitalization of Rs 44,672.71 crore. The combined market capitalization of the two firms is Rs 1.21 trillion. If signed, the agreement would be one of the country’s largest.
With a manufacturing capacity of 550 mtpa, India is the world’s second-largest cement manufacturer, accounting for around 8% of global cement output.
Thyssenkrupp Polysius wins orders in Vietnam
ThyssenKrupp Polysius’ Asia Pacific division has secured an order for two Polflame-type main burners for an unnamed cement plant. The equipment supplier has highlighted the ability of its burner product to cope with low-grade coal and support high alternative fuel substitution rates as key selling factors. The order follows the purchase of an Impact Crusher by the same customer previously.
Lafarge Canada to donate to wild salmon project
Lafarge Canada has announced a five-year in-kind donation with the Nicomekl Enhancement Society (NES) in British Columbia. The agreement will see the building materials producer donate around US$15,000/yr in aggregates, concrete and labour to enhance the sustainability of the wild Pacific salmon population and ecosystem within the coastal area of the Nicomekl River.
Holcim divests Holcim Russia
Holcim has agreed to sell its Russian business to its local management. When the transaction is completed, the business will continue to operate under different branding. Holcim says that it remains committed to supporting Holcim Russia’s employees and ensuring an orderly transfer for its customers. DGAP Corporate News has reported that Holcim deconsolidated the subsidiary in March 2022, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
The company’s statement said, “Holcim’s Board of Directors expresses its heartfelt concern about the tragic human suffering in the region, and is fully committed to supporting affected people, families and communities. The Board of Directors thanks all Holcim colleagues who are mobilising around the world alongside local NGOs to provide shelter, essential goods and medical supplies, as well as volunteering their time.”