Quinn Group-Lagan joint venture will not proceed

The proposed join venture between the Quinn Group and Lagan cement will not go ahead the companies announced this morning. In a statement they said that discussions between the two had concluded and they had “decided not to progress further”.

Quinn Building Products Ltd and Lagan Cement Group Ltd had signed a memorandum of understanding last December that may lead to a joint venture, saying at the time the idea was to create a “sustainable” independent Irish cement producer reported the Anglo Celt.

The news that the joint venture is off comes only weeks after a bullet was received by Lagan chief executive, Kevin Lagan, at his Belfast office, an incident which was reported to the PSNI.

The rifle bullet was seemingly sent as a threat against the Group’s link up with Quinn Group, and was accompanied by a message reading: “Quinn … is this what you want”.

Despite this, Mr Lagan told the Celt that the threat was “clearly an attempt to intimidate myself and the Lagan Group at a time when we are engaged in discussions with Quinn on combining our cement and building products businesses.

“The proposed JV is a positive move for everyone and will create a sustainable independent cement manufacturer that can continue to support its customers and employees on a competitive basis. The people behind this crude intimidatory tactic clearly aren’t interested in protecting jobs, but we will not be swayed from our determination to complete our discussions successfully.”

The Quinn Group too stated, “Quinn Manufacturing Group has experienced significant intimidation over the past 21 months and we are well aware of the grave upset and annoyance thiscauses to our colleagues and their families.

“Whatever cause is espoused by those who perpetrate and/or sponsor intimidation of this kind, it is absolutely clear that these people have no concern for the preservation of jobs.

“Further, they have no concern for the families of individuals who are dependent on the success of these businesses and they have absolutely no regard for the image of the locality and the community.”

The joint statement from the two companies released this morning read;

“In late December of last year, Quinn Building Products Ltd and Lagan Cement Group Ltd signed a Memorandum of Understanding to explore the possibility of a Joint Venture involving certain of their cement and building product businesses. Discussions have now concluded and both companies have decided not to progress further with the proposed Joint Venture.”