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Tarmac unloads TopPave factory

MATERIALS

MATERIALS giant Tarmac has sold its concrete landscaping block arm to rival producer Brett for an undisclosed sum.

The deal sees Brett Landscaping and Building Products become the UK's second largest concrete paving block manufacturer.

Brett will continue to manufacture the range of Tarmac TopPave wet-cast products at its base at Pocklington, North Yorkshire, and a plant in Poole will become a core manufacturing site. Both sites were acquired as par t of the deal.

TopPave cost Tarmac £ 26 million in 1999. The firm was thought to be looking to claw back its initial purchase price plus most of the cash it had ploughed into developing its sites. Tarmac spent £10 million developing the Pocklington plant alone.

According to Brett Landscaping managing director Brendan O'Carroll the move will enable the company to target larger developments.

He said: 'The acquisition gives us the scale and strength to capitalise on major developments such as the Olympics.'

Tarmac unveiled its plans to sell off TopPave in February, blaming spiralling energy costs and a weak market in the UK.

The deal will see Tarmac TopPave's product range integrated into Brett Landscaping and Building Materials, although Tarmac will retain the TopPave name.

Mr O'Carroll said: 'The business underpins our very st rong posit ion in the market.'