1) CRH (Oldcastle) / $9.01 billion
2013 revenue: $8.46 billion
U.S. HQ: Atlanta
Global HQ: Dublin, Ireland
With operations in all 50 U.S. states and six Canadian provinces, CRH considers itself the largest building materials company in North America, and third largest aggregate and ready-mix producer in the U.S. In May 2015, CRH agreed to acquire assets worth about $7 billion from Holcim and Lafarge upon the completion of their merger. The deal includes all of Holcim’s assets in Canada, and U.S. cement plants in Montana and the Great Lakes region.
2) Cemex / $6.86 billion
2013 revenue: $6.50 billion
U.S. HQ: Houston
Global HQ: Monterrey, Mexico
U.S. sales increased 11% to $3.7 billion in 2014, led by cement and ready-mix. Demand improved in every U.S. market, with growth in residential and office/manufacturing construction. Sales of Mexican operations remained flat at $3.2 billion.
3) MDU Resources Group (Knife River Corp.) / $4.67 billion
2013 revenue: $4.46 billion
U.S. HQ: Bismarck, N.D.
The company’s construction materials and contracting business — which includes mining aggregates, ready-mix concrete, cement, and asphalt, as well as contracting services — reported its best third and fourth quarter performance in history. MDU plans to “move back into growth mode” in 2015 through acquisitions and organic growth opportunities.
4) Holcim / $3.70 billion
2013 revenue: $3.51 billion
U.S. HQ: Waltham, Mass.
Global HQ: Zurich, Switzerland
Holcim reported “solid like-for-like performance” in 2014. Holcim (US) Inc.'s profit improved due to rebounding residential and commercial markets. Canada had a slightly lower operating profit than 2013, but sales of ready-mix concrete, aggregates, and asphalt improved. Ready-mix sales grew 2% in North America but decreased in Latin America, for an overall 6% drop across the group.
5) HeidelbergCement (Lehigh Hanson) / $3.38 billion
2013 revenue: $3.07 billion
U.S. HQ: Allentown, Pa.
Global HQ: Heidelberg, Germany
In 2014 the producer saw noticeable growth in sales volumes in all business lines, calling it “the best year in operational terms since the financial crisis.” In December, HeidelbergCement sold Hanson Building Products (including concrete pipe and precast) to a private equity firm for $1.4 billion. The sale will help the producer focus on core products (cement, aggregates, ready-mix, and asphalt) and reduce debt.
6) Lafarge / $3.33 billion
2013 revenue: $3.39 billion
U.S. HQ: Reston, Va.
Global HQ: Paris, France
After announcing plans to merge with Holcim in April, Lafarge sold assets, including five aggregate quarries in Maryland, accounting for some loss of revenue. North America produced almost a quarter of the company’s revenue in 2014. Most global assets to be purchased by CRH in 2015 are Lafarge holdings.
7) Vulcan Materials / $2.99 billion
2013 revenue: $2.63 billion
U.S. HQ: Birmingham, Ala.
At year-end, the aggregates producer reported “2014 was a good year.” In March, Vulcan sold its cement and concrete operations in Florida and Georgia to Cementos Argos (with a 20-year supply contract) to sharpen its focus on aggregates. Vulcan still owns 52 ready-mix plants in five states, after trading its California concrete assets for asphalt plants in early 2015.
8) Martin Marietta / $2.96 billion
2013 revenue: $2.16 billion
U.S. HQ: Raleigh, N.C.
Martin Marietta enjoyed strong financial performance in 2014, even before its $2.8 billion acquisition of Dallas-based TXI, the largest supplier of construction aggregates, ready-mixed concrete, concrete products, and cement in Texas. The company dropped “Materials” from its name and added about 120 ready-mixed concrete plants, almost tripling its revenue from concrete sales to $431 million.
9) Colas / $2.74 billion
Colas operates in 27 U.S. states and eight Canadian provinces, producing ready-mixed concrete, aggregates, and asphalt. Revenue improved in both countries due to strong economic fundamentals in Canada and state-funded infrastructure projects in the U.S. Colas expects further growth in 2015 with continued economic recovery in North America.
10) Buzzi Unicem / $1.52 billion
2013 revenue: $1.32 billion
U.S. HQ: Bethlehem, Pa.
Global HQ: Casale-Monferrato, Italy
The producer benefited from renewed U.S. cement and ready-mix sales, due to increased commercial and residential construction — although public infrastructure spending declined in its markets. U.S. economic activity “accelerated beyond expectations” in the third quarter of 2014, boosted by a drop in oil prices.
Sources: Corporate annual reports and press releases. Revenue figures reported in Euros were converted to USD using 8/15/15 exchange rates. 2013 figures have also been recalculated using current conversion rates for comparison purposes.