LafargeHolcim
The company's new logo is pictured at the headquarters of LafargeHolcim in Zurich, Switzerland, July 15, 2015 [Representational Image].Reuters

Swiss cement giant LafargeHolcim has said that it has raised stake in two cement companies namely Ambuja Cement and ACC limited by 1.49 percent and 4.19 percent, respectively. 

"LafrgeHolcim announces that its subsidiary Holderind Investments has increased its shareholding in Ambuja Cements Ltd by 39,10,000 shares to 1,253,156,361 shares (63.11 percent of total Ambuja shares) and in ACC Ltd (ACC), a subsidiary of Ambuja, by 7,870,000 shares to 8,411,000 shares (4.48 percent of total ACC shares)," Ambuja Cements said in a regulatory filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange. 

According to media reports, Holderind Investments as of now holds 61.62 percent stake in Ambuja Cements and 0.29 percent in ACC limited. In a statement, LafargeHolcim said: "The purchase price will be paid in INR. The impact on LafargeHolcim's net debt is CHF 325 million ($324 million). This investment was not included in the group's net debt objective of around CHF 13 billion at the end of 2016, which should be adjusted accordingly."

LafargeHolcim said India is one of the key markets for the company having very solid long-term fundamentals and clear potential for improving business. "These share purchases further increase the Group's interests in its two strong companies, which constitute a solid platform from which to capture future growth," the firm said in a statement. 

In July this year, Nirma acquired Lafarge's India assets for $1.4 billion. The units comprised of three cement plants and two grinding stations with a total capacity of around 11 million tonnes per annum. The proceeds from the sale would be used to reduce Lafarge's debt. 

Shares of Ambuja Cements were trading at Rs 202.60 at around 3:19 p.m. on Wednesday, down 3.50 percent from their previous close. Similarly, the ACC Ltd stock was also down 1.23 percent at Rs 1,330 around the same time on the BSE. 

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