OCI to split its construction and fertiliser businesses

OrascomOrascom Construction Industries (OCI) is set to split its construction and fertiliser businesses into two trading separately in Egypt and abroad.

Greater strategic clarity

Fertilisers will remain under OCI and a new company will be formed to hold the construction business in a breakup intended to provide "greater strategic clarity", the Financial Times quoted Nassef Sawiris, OCI chairman and chief executive, as saying.

"It has been apparent to us, that there is absolutely no rationale to justify the relationship between the fertiliser business [which exports to Europe, North America and Brazil] and the construction group which [specialises in infrastructure] works predominantly in emerging markets," said Mr Sawiris.

Will not stop at number three

Mr Sawiris added that the company was poised to become the world's third largest producer of nitrogen fertilisers, after its Algeria plant comes on stream next month. The company owns fertiliser production facilities in Egypt, the US and the Netherlands.

"Right now our focus is on growing the fertiliser business," said Mr Sawiris. "We will not stop at being number three. The business is consolidating and we intend to be a driving force in any consolidation in the global market."

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