Gypsum industry news
Brazil: Saint-Gobain has finalised its purchase of the distribution network of Tumelero Materiais de Construção sales outlets in Rio Grande do Sul. The distribution company operates a portfolio of building materials and services for the construction industry including 29 sales outlets and nearly 1000 staff.
Following the acquisition Saint-Gobain says it will run the country's largest network of distribution sales outlets for home improvement products and services in Brazil with a total of 70 outlets operating under the Telhanorte, Telhanorte Conceito, Pro Telhanorte and Tumelero brands in 46 cities in São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Paraná and Rio Grande do Sul states. The transaction has been approved by the Brazilian competition regulator CADE.
Brazil: Saint-Gobain will revise its year-on-year turnover growth projection of 7% in Brazil for 2015 as it is expecting volume sales to be lower than 2014, according to Thierry Fournier, the firm's president for Brazil, Argentina and Chile. Turnover is expected to still grow but at a slower rate than 7%, according to Valor Economico.
The building materials producer had to lift prices in the first half of 2015 to compensate for rising energy and US dollar-linked raw material costs. Despite this the group still continues to gain market presence in some segments like drywall.
Saint-Gobain holds a diversified presence in Brazil with divisions manufacturing fibre cement, mortars, wallboard, insulation and glass.
Brazil: Knauf has inaugurated its second wallboard plant in Camacri, Bahia. The US$66m plant will increase the company's annual production in Brazil by 80% to 45Mm2/yr. The company has forecast a 15% increase in sales volume in 2014, with the new plant supplying the north, north east and part of the central west regions of the country, with the possibility of exporting to the Caribbean and Africa. The plant is expected to be operating at full capacity within four to five years.
Brazil: Etex has started the construction of a new wallboard plant in Santa Cruz, Rio de Janeiro with an investment of Euro60m. The plant will open in mid-2015.
"The investment enables Etex to expand its footprint in Latin America, an emerging market of strategic importance. Brazil plays a leading role in the economic development of the region. The country's wallboard market is growing rapidly, at twice the rate of the construction industry,'' said Fons Peeters, Etex's CEO.
Construction work for the new plant started on 31 March 2014. An estimated 150 employees will manufacture three types of high-performance wallboard: standard, humidity-resistant and fire-resistant. The plant will serve markets in the south and southeast regions of Brazil. The new plant will be Etex's third wallboard production facility in the country joining its existing plants in Pernambuco state.
Brazil: Knauf plans to set up a plant in Camaçari, Bahia with an investment of US$61.5m. Commissioning is due in 2014. The plant will produce gypsum products and the metallic structures for construction systems. It will be the second such plant in Brazil after the first in Queimados, Rio de Janeiro. Knauf's total capacity in Brazil will grow from 24 Mm2 to 44Mm2 of gypsum products.
Germany/Brazil/Mexico: Wacker Chemie AG, the Munich-based gypsum additive producer, is extending its existing technical centre in São Paulo, Brazil, and creating a new technical centre in Mexico City, Mexico. The company will also expand its training centre in São Paulo and open a new one in Mexico City. Both projects have a combined investment of Euro1.2m and are scheduled for completion in the first quarter of 2013.
"Central and South America are key future markets for Wacker. Our sales in these regions have grown by an annual average of 15% over the past five years," said president and CEO Dr Rudolf Staudigl.