Cement Manufacturing in the US Industry Market Research Report from IBISWorld Has Been Updated

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Although industry revenue has recovered completely, the profitability of industry operators remains constrained, which is still low compared with prerecessionary margins before and during the housing boom. For this reason, industry research firm IBISWorld has updated a report on the Cement Manufacturing industry in its growing industry report collection.

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Operators will perform well due to ongoing investment in residential and commercial projects.

The Cement Manufacturing industry produces a range of cements, including Portland, masonry and specialty cements. Cement, which is used for making concrete and mortar, is distributed almost exclusively to construction markets for residential, nonresidential and infrastructure construction. Following the recession, depressed conditions across these markets reduced demand and caused revenue to plummet. However, the industry has since recovered, with forecast average annual growth in the five years to 2014. This includes anticipated growth in 2014, which is in line with improving conditions across building markets and steady public expenditure on infrastructure.

The Cement Manufacturing industry is characterized by a significant degree of market concentration, with the four largest companies (Cemex SA de CV, HeidelbergCement AG, Lafarge North America and Holcim Inc.) accounting for over about two thirds of industry revenue. While all four major companies in this industry are foreign-owned with substantial global cement operations, so far they have limited import penetration by meeting domestic demand through the expansion of domestic subsidiary operations. Meanwhile, cement exports have grown substantially in response to demand from emerging markets undergoing rapid economic development. Still, domestic consumption continues to account for the majority of industry revenue, underpinning current and prospective revenue growth.

In response to this industry's continuing maturity, operators are improving the efficiency of procurement, production, and distribution. Almost all major players, and many midsized players, are vertically integrated with downstream concrete manufacturing and wholesaling operations. Vertical integration, combined with a wave of mergers and acquisitions, has allowed operators to streamline production and reach strategic, but geographically dispersed, construction markets. As a result, profit is expected to rebound in 2014, an improvement over recessionary lows.

Cement manufacturers are expected to continue performing well, due to ongoing investment in new residential and commercial projects and in infrastructure and utilities upgrades. However, according to IBISWorld Industry Analyst Amal Ahmad, “construction activity at home and abroad is expected to stabilize as economies recover fully from the housing boom and bust, and as emerging market growth steadies.” These factors will “propel cement manufacturers to innovate ways to increase production efficiency and maximize exposure to strategic construction markets,” says Ahmad. IBISWorld expects industry revenue to grow at an annualized rate in the five years to 2019.

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Gavin Smith
IBISWorld Inc.
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