Wienerberger is expanding its activities in southern Germany with the acquisition of the insolvent clay block producer Rimmele. Rimmele is a long-established company with high branch recognition and strong customer ties throughout the Swabian region. The brick plant in Ehingen is located 80 km southeast of Stuttgart and has a production capacity of roughly 100 million NF (standard format for bricks).
The transaction was completed in January in the form of an asset deal, whereby the parties have agreed not to disclose any information on the purchase price. The acquired assets include a clay pit that has raw material reserves for the next 20 years. The Ehingen plant generated revenues of €8.5 million (approximately $11.8 million) in 2008, and 28 employees will be transferred to continue operations.
“Wienerberger was previously not represented in Swabia, Rimmele’s primary market,” said Heimo Scheuch, CEO of Wienerberger AG. “We reacted quickly and used the opportunity presented by these bankruptcy proceedings to strengthen our regional portfolio in Germany. Of course, we will also be able to realize synergies in sales and administration with the integration of Rimmele into our German organization.”
Asked if this marks a turning point for Wienerberger and the start of renewed acquisition activity in the future, Scheuch said, “As long as there are no clear signs of economic recovery, the protection of liquidity will remain our top priority. The Rimmele acquisition is already included in our planned investments for 2010 of roughly €90 million” (~ $124.7 million).
For additional information, visit www.wienerberger.com