French building materials group Lafarge has appointed Financial
Dynamics as its first UK financial PR agency. The agency was appointed
last weekend in preparation for this week’s announcement of Lafarge’s
hostile bid for UK tile and aggregates company Redland.
Financial Dynamics was brought in without a pitch following a
recommendation from French drinks group LVMH. It has handled LVMH’s PR
throughout its opposition to the proposed Guinness and GrandMet
Financial Dynamics will focus on merger and acquisition work. Nick
Miles, chief executive of Financial Dynamics, said: ’We’re working on
establishing Lafarge’s credentials and demonstrating that mergers and
acquisitions are another string to our bow.’
The agency’s first task is to handle media relations for Lafarge in its
bid for Redland. Rival bids are likely from UK groups Hanson and RMC and
Australian building group Pioneer. Redland is resisting Lafarge’s
initial pounds 1.67 billion bid in the hope of a higher offer from rival
bidders or Lafarge itself.
Lafarge is the world’s second-largest cement supplier and also supplies
speciality building products. Its estimated turnover last year was
pounds 4.4 billion. It already has UK concerns following its purchase of
Redland’s plaster board business in 1992 and has a significant presence
in the US.