Etex addition to complement Marley Building Systems local business offering after acquisition is finalised.

Marley Building Systems has announced the acquisition of the South African Gypsum business of Lafarge involving Etex.

“This acquisition is complementary to our business. Being of equal size, we will team up to create a unique and competitive offer that capitalises on today’s Southern African building trends,” says Marc Vanoverbeke, regional director for Africa at Marley Building Systems. “The acquisition is also in line with Etex’s vision of strengthening its position by investing in Southern Africa,” he adds.

Etex is a Belgian industrial group that manufactures and markets building materials, operating from 118 production sites in 43 countries, with over 17 000 employees. With annual sales of about three billion euro, Etex is an international player in sustainable building materials and solutions.

Its product offering is focused around four core businesses: Cladding and building boards in fibre cement and plaster, roofing materials, passive fire protection and high-performance insulation, and ceramic floor and wall tiles.

Growing the African market
Firmly established in Europe and Latin America since 1905 and 1937 respectively, Etex is looking to strengthen its position on the African continent, with the Southern African region and Nigeria as the company’s main drivers of growth.

“In this region, the demand for housing has been on the rise for years,” explains Vanoverbeke. “The growing population, from 44 million in 2000 to 53 million inhabitants in 2013, is one of the main reasons for this trend, along with an emerging middle class. To put this into perspective: South Africa alone already accounts for 15% of Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) and has an average annual growth rate of 2,2%,” he notes.

“In addition, the Southern African market is becoming increasingly regulated. Various quality standards are being adopted, with recent examples like SANS 204 for Energy Efficiency in Buildings and SANS 517 for Light Steel Frame Building. Consequently, alternative building methods such as dry construction are gradually replacing traditional construction,” Vanoverbeke states.

Ensuring a smooth transition
In addition to amplifying its presence in Southern Africa, Marley Building Systems will combine the expertise of various support functions, such as marketing, sales and customer service. Thereby, the company is hoping to achieve higher operational excellence and service quality, and a more streamlined structure in the region.

The acquisition will become effective upon regulatory and competitions approval, after which a transition team will work to ensure the smooth merger of both companies.

Marley Building Systems
Tel: 011 316 2121
Email: sean.singh@marley.co.za
Website: www.etexgroup.com / www.marleybuidingsystems.co.za