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Heidelberg to exit Lehigh White Cement partnership with Cemex, Aalborg

Sources: HeidelbergCement AG, Germany; Cemex S.A.B. de C.V., Monterrey, Mexico; Cementir S.p.A., CP staff

Lehigh Hanson parent company HeidelbergCement will sell its 51 percent stake in Lehigh White Cement Co. to minority shareholders in a deal valued at about $140 million and scheduled for first quarter closing. Ownership of Lehigh White Cement, which has 280,000 tons' capacity in York, Pa., and Waco, Texas, plants, will be split between Aalborg Cement Co. (63.25 percent), a North American business of Denmark-based Aalborg Portland Holding A/S, and Cemex Inc. (36.75 percent).

"As a niche product with small volumes, the standalone production of white cement does not fit the strategic focus on efficiency of HeidelbergCement," says Managing Board Chairman Dr. Bernd Scheifele. "The disposal is part of our global portfolio review and optimization with the goal to generate additional cash flow in order to support our disciplined growth and increase shareholder returns."

The Lehigh White Cement announcement follows an early-January transaction in which HeidelbergCement subsidiary Italcementi S.p.A. acquired Cementir Italia S.p.A. cement and concrete operations throughout Italy from Cementir Holding S.p.A., the Rome-based parent company of Aalborg Portland Holding.