The merger of cement group Holcim with French competitor Lafarge has led to difficulties. Now comes the next step to leave ‘LafargeHolcim’ behind.
It was supposed to be a merger of equals back in 2014 and 2015. The world market leader in cement, the Swiss Holcim Group, joined forces with the runner-up in the market, French competitor Lafarge, via a share swap. LafargeHolcim was created.
But the Group seems to be increasingly putting this chapter behind it.
First came the name. The Swiss won. In 2021, LafargeHolcim was again merely renamed Holcim. Now today, Monday, followed the announcement that another circumstance from that merger, namely the additional share listing in Paris, will be reduced to that in Switzerland.
Immediately after the merger in 2015, around 25 percent of the total trading volume of Holcim shares was traded on Euronext in Paris, according to information from the group.
However, the daily trading volume of Holcim shares on Euronext had steadily decreased thereafter. Liquidity has shifted to the Swiss stock exchange, SIX, where around 98 percent of the volume is currently traded, according to the communiqué.
So it seems logical not only to have a uniform market presence with the better of the two names but also to abandon the dual listing. The relic of the past is thus being abolished.
Due to the decline in trading volumes on Euronext over the past four years, as well as the costs and regulatory burdens associated with a dual listing, Holcim’s board of directors concluded that a single listing on SIX was in Holcim’s corporate interest, it said.
As a result, the Board of Directors approved the delisting of Holcim’s shares and the establishment of a voluntary sale facility procedure in accordance with Euronext market rules.
The delisting was approved by the Board of Directors of Euronext, the statement added.
Investors will now only be able to trade Holcim shares on SIX and in Swiss francs. Investors have three options in the transition to the new system: First, they can simply hold on to the Paris securities and later trade them themselves on SIX.
Group pays fees
Second, they can simply sell the Paris Holcim shares. And third, investors could join the Holcim Group’s voluntary sales campaign. In this, the shares are accepted by a bank and later sold on the SIX and the money, including all the fees for the transaction, is refunded back to the investors.
This is according to the additional information from Holcim on the transaction.
Target in sight
All this is consistent in the eyes of muula.ch to form a more powerful group. In any case there is enough to do in dealing with the fall from grace surrounding the financing of terrorists in Syria, which recently resulted in a settlement, at least, with the Americans and a fine of almost 800 million dollars.
And really, the company’s ultimate goal is to make and sell cement.