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Tarmac maintain largest share of the market

Tarmac lorry

New BDS report says Tarmac continue to be UK’s largest aggregates company in a growing market

IN their latest annual review of outputs and developments in the UK aggregates industry, BDS Marketing Research have identified Tarmac as the largest company with a market share of nearly 25%.

The top five companies are Tarmac, Aggregate Industries, CEMEX, Hanson and Breedon, who between them are estimated to have around 60% of the sand and gravel market. There is a higher concentration in crushed rock, where BDS believe that the combined share of these five companies is now 70%.

These are some of the conclusions of the annual BDS report on the aggregates industry entitled: ‘Estimated outputs of pits, quarries and marine wharves in Great Britain’, – the only independent source of information on the outputs and shares of all sites and companies in the country.

According to BDS, aggregates volumes increased by more than 10% in 2014, with much of the increase in sand and gravel volumes due to heavy demand for concrete in London.

Elsewhere, crushed rock is increasingly being used in place of sand and gravel, as gravel reserves are difficult to replenish. The consultancy expects further growth (around 5%) in aggregates volumes during 2015.

Commenting on this forecast, principal consultant Julian Clapp said: ‘The industry is enjoying a long-awaited improvement in the market. Volumes are still lower than they were in 2007, but this will change in the next few years. We expect further growth of around 4–5% a year for the next three years.’

With the industry continuing to evolve, in the last year CRH have become the largest aggregates company through their acquisition of Tarmac, whilst Aggregate Industries are now owned by LafargeHolcim. There have also been other changes at a local level.

As well as estimates of the outputs of all pits and quarries producing land-won and marine sand and gravel, and crushed rock, the annual report lists the quarries that have opened, closed or been mothballed over the last year, and monitors current planning proposals for extensions and new facilities.

Some major new consents have been granted for new reserves, although once again, these have not been sufficient to match the level of extraction. BDS say companies are also increasingly looking to develop new quarry sites as reserves at existing sites are exhausted, though these can involve considerable time and money to bring forward, with no guarantee of success.

For further details of the report entitled: ‘Estimated outputs of pits, quarries and marine wharves in Great Britain’, contact Andy Sales at BDS on tel: (01761) 433035; or email [email protected]

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