Minorco to pay pounds 55m for Steetley's Spanish arm: Acquisition's profits likely to fall to pounds 3m this year

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The Independent Online
MINORCO, the cash-rich resources group controlled by the South African groups Anglo American and De Beers, is buying the Spanish aggregates business of Steetley, which was acquired by Redland last year.

Minorco is paying pounds 55m in cash for 14 quarries and gravel pits and 21 readymix concrete plants which made up the Steetley aggregates business in Spain.

These have an annual capacity of 6 million tonnes of aggregates and 1.3 million tonnes of concrete and made between pounds 4m and pounds 5m pre-tax profits in 1992. Profits in the current year are expected to fall to about pounds 3m.

Although Steetley paid about pounds 80m for the Spanish businesses, Redland had written them down to pounds 55m.

Minorco already has minerals businesses in East Germany and Britain, where it acquired Imperial Chemical Industries' lime business at the end of 1991. John Draper, managing director of the industrial minerals division, said the group was keen to expand these operations 'where we have good local management'.

Minorco has been cited as a potential buyer of a number of building materials groups, incluing Tarmac, Evered Bardon and Blue Circle.

The disposal means Redland, due to report its final results on Thursday, has raised pounds 150m from sales in the past three months.