Rugby announces takeover approach
Mark Hake, an analyst at Merrill Lynch said: "The UK building materials sector has had a pretty torrid year.... We could soon see a wave of consolidation, which is likely to be on a global basis."
Analysts say Rugby has become a takeover target because its strategy of transforming itself into a focused cement business has proved "messier and more drawn-out than expected".
Robin Hardy, an analyst at WestLB Panmure, said: "Rugby has been trading below its net asset value, at around 87p a share. That's bound to awaken people's interests." He valued Rugby at 125p-135p a share.
Possible suitors for Rugby include RMC or Blue Circle, Switzerland's Holderbank Financiere Glarus, France's Lafarge and Ireland's CRH. But Mr Hake said: "No one looks a racing certainty. I could come up with a dozen credible buyers."
Separately yesterday, Anglo American said it had ended talks to buy Tarmac. Nick von Schirnding, a senior vice president at Anglo American, said: "We have targeted the UK and parts of Europe as strategically interesting areas for us. That position still remains." Mr von Schirnding added that he had been "puzzled" by the announcement on Friday, when Tarmacsaid it had rejected Anglo's 535p a share approach, but failed to refer to the final, 550p offer, made on Friday afternoon.
Rugby shares closed unchanged at 114p yesterday, valuing it at pounds 743m. Tarmac dropped 24p to 488p and shares in Hepworth rose 9p to 197p on speculation it could be the next company in the sector to receive a takeover approach.
That's some guestlist! Stunning images show huge dynastic wedding between Ultra-Orthodox Jewish families which attracted 25,000 guests
Emergency landing at Heathrow sparks further controversy over London airport capacity
Two bailed after arrest over Woolwich attack Twitter comments
Exclusive: Woolwich killings suspect Michael Adebolajo was inspired by cleric banned from UK after urging followers to behead enemies of Islam
Men arrested after RAF jet is scrambled to escort Pakistan Airlines passenger plane to London Stansted Airport
- 1 Liam Gallagher slams Daft Punk: 'I could have written Get Lucky in an hour'
- 2 What, let gays get married? We must be bonkers
- 3 'Something passed underneath us, quite close': Airbus A320 has close encounter with UFO
- 4 Lord of the Sings: Sir Christopher Lee, 91, to release heavy metal album
- 5 Two bailed after arrest over Woolwich attack Twitter comments
BMF is the UK’s biggest and best loved outdoor fitness classes
Find out what The Independent's resident travel expert has to say about one of the most beautiful small cities in the world
Nook is donating eReaders to volunteers at high-need schools and participating in exclusive events throughout the campaign.
Get the latest on The Evening Standard's campaign to get London's children reading.
Win anything from gadgets to five-star holidays on our competitions and offers page.