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All-share deal creates pounds 400m waste business

BRITAIN'S BIGGEST independent waste management company was created yesterday after Waste Recycling agreed to buy the waste management business of Yorkshire Water in a pounds 191m deal.

The merger creates a business with a market capitalisation exceeding pounds 400m, sales of more than pounds 100m and a significant share of the waste market in England's eastern half.

Waste Recycling, a fast-growing group floated four years ago, is issuing just under 40 million new shares to acquire Yorkshire Environmental Global Waste Management (YEGWM) which specialises in handling dry and liquid waste. Under the all-share deal, Yorkshire Water will have 46 per cent of the enlarged group.

The combined business will operate 30 landfill sites stretching from East Anglia through Lincolnshire and the East Midlands to Yorkshire.

Waste Recycling has also taken out an option to buy 3C Waste, the local authority waste disposal company in Cheshire, which Yorkshire Water is in the process of acquiring for an estimated pounds 100m.

David Williams, chairman of Waste Recycling, said the deal was unlikely to raise monopoly concerns as the pounds 4bn a year waste market was so fragmented. The merger will only raise Waste Recycling's share of the market to near 3 per cent.

Waste Recycling last year completed the strategic purchase of Darrington, which has extensive operations in Yorkshire and Cambridgeshire.

YEGWM owns 12 landfill sites, a liquid waste treatment plant near Leeds, a waste-to-energy plant at Eastcroft, Nottingham and is expanding sites at Wakefield and Rotherham.