The slumping property market is causing construction companies to seek new finance.
Saint-Gobain, the world’s biggest building materials company, said it will have to sell 1.5 billion euros worth of shares. The firm has also been hit by falling car sales as it makes windows for vehicles. At the same time Lafarge, the world’s biggest cement group, unveiled a package of financial measures that includes selling 1.5 billion euros worth of new shares and slashing its dividend to investors in half. Announcing lower full-year net profit at almost 1.6 billion euros. Lafarge also said it will make more cost cuts, invest less and sell assets. The company, which is saddled with massive debt after borrowing heavily to buy Egypt’s Orascom Cement in 2007, anticipates cement sales will fall this year.