Colombian cement maker Argos buys French Guiana company from Lafarge, Holcim
BOGOTA, April 9 (Reuters) - Colombia's largest cement maker, Argos, said on Wednesday it will pay 50 million euros for a French Guiana company owned in equal parts by Lafarge and Holcim, two days after those companies announced a merger.
Argos said it would buy Ciments Guyanais - including its clinker mill and port near the French Guiana capital of Cayenne.
Holcim said on Monday that it would buy Lafarge, creating the world's largest cement maker, with combined annual sales of $44 billion. The two companies, which operate in 90 countries, are obliged to sell $5 billion euros worth of assets to comply with monopoly regulations.
"This new acquisition in French Guiana harmoniously compliments our network of assets in the region, especially for its proximity to the mill in Suriname and the cement terminals in the Antilles," the president of Argos, Jorge Mario Velasquez, said in a statement.
He added that the purchase will be subject to regulatory approval.
Argos also operates in the United States, Panama and the Caribbean. It purchased U.S.-based Vulcan Materials in January for $720 million, which doubled its cement production capacity in that country.
Argos is controlled by Grupo Argos, a holding company that is part of Colombia's largest industrial conglomerate, the Grupo Empresarial Antioqueno, or GEA. (Reporting by Nelson Bocanegra; Writing by Julia Symmes Cobb; Editing by Dan Grebler)
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