During my recent travelling and given the problems with my desktop I hadn't looked at the evolution of the forementioned company for a couple of months.
I was surprised to learn that a capital increase and a bond issue have been succesfully concluded and that the holding of Ludwig Merckle now stands at a meagre 24.4 %.
See : http://www.heidelbergcement.com/global/en/company/home.htm.
The leaps and bonds the group went through during the last decade appear quite interesting, and indicate a strong will to survive, if not a very clear sense of direction as far as shareholdership is concerned ; I remember some curious episodes where small shareholders, such as myself, were very actively "encouraged" to sell their shares.
I am not sufficiently interested to try to write a critical history of the group since its first big acquisition (CBR in 1993) but I hope that someone else will undertake that task, sooner or later ...