Anhui Conch Cement to sell shares to boost production

(Shanghai Daily)
Updated: 2007-06-26 12:59

Anhui Conch Cement Co plans to sell shares valued at 11 billion yuan (US$1.4 billion) in Shanghai to upgrade power equipment and boost output.

The company, China's biggest maker of the construction material, will offer 200 million new shares, equal to an 11.3 percent stake after the sale, Conch said in a Shanghai stock exchange statement today, without giving a price or timing. The stock closed at 55 yuan yesterday.

Conch will spend part of the funds on new boilers and generators, advancing a government goal of curbing pollution in China, the world's biggest maker and user of cement. The offer adds to about US$13.5 billion of equity sales announced in the past two months as China pushes state-owned companies to raise funds to help damp demand in a market that has almost doubled in 2007.

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The new power equipment will cut energy consumption and save costs, Anhui Conch said. The company, based in China's eastern Wuhu City, will also use some of the proceeds to boost annual cement production capacity to about 87 million tons from 65 million tons. China produced 19 percent more cement last year from a year earlier, according to the government.

The Shanghai-traded stock of Anhui Conch fell as much as 1.9 yuan, or 3.5 percent, to 53.1 yuan in Shanghai and was at 54.15 yuan at 10:45am. Before today, the stock had surged 349 percent in the past 12 months.

The Hong Kong-traded shares have more than quadrupled in the past year, beating the 38 percent gain of the benchmark Hang Seng Index. The stock closed at HK$51.60 (US$6.60) yesterday and was suspended from trading this morning.

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