Taking a Mexican Company Global-The CEMEX Way
Suitable for MBA, Executive MBA, GEMBA, and executive education programs, this case uses CEMEX, a global cement producer based in Mexico, to set the stage for unfolding an analysis of a growth through acquisition strategy. It offers a discussion about the firm's overall strategy to acquire on a global scale instead of growing organically and provides an opportunity to introduce basic financial, marketing, and operational terms that can be explored in following classes. The material includes a PMI process that further allows discussion on that technique. The case opens with a conference call and another barrage of questions for CEO Lorenzo Zambrano about his bid to buy Australia-based Rinker Group in October 2006. Until this point, CEMEX has had a long-standing habit of buying businesses in emerging markets; this acquisition would be a departure from that strategy. If the deal goes through, it would be the single largest acquisition in CEMEX's history, and it would be among its few forays into a developed market other than in the neighboring United States. The company has grown exponentially and successfully. Why would this effort be any different? Was the acquisition a good idea or not? And if it was, how would Zambrano and his leadership team convince Wall Street and others of that?