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Terex may abandon European market

Construction equipment manufacturer Terex may abandon its European remit altogether according to a downbeat assessment by chief executive Ronald DeFeo.

Speaking at a JP Morgan diversified-industries conference in New York, he said that he will decide by early next year which areas will be sold off.

He first raised the prospect of exiting the general construction and earth-moving business in February, when he said: “My job over the next nine months is to fix, merge or sell”.

He now believes that the construction equipment business “is probably not that attractive to anybody not connected to a company with large market presence elsewhere that is looking to expand into Europe.”

And he says that Terex’s presence in some markets - including Europe - may never be big enough to consistently generate adequate profits. Thus the focus on disposals and lowering costs.

He says: “We’ve never really demonstrated the ability to be meaningfully profitable in this business. I’m going to look at it by product type and make some decisions by early 2010.”