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Adding Alumafel puts Hydro at the top of the Spanish building systems market - the second-largest domestic market in Western Europe - and confirms its position as a leading player globally.

Hydro announced that its agreement to acquire Alumafel, signed on May 9, was subject to approval of the competition authorities in Spain. This approval has been granted.

The addition of Alumafel represents a key step in the development of Hydro's profitable downstream operations. "This is a significant day for our organization," says Lars Hauk Ringvold, who leads Hydro's building systems activities.

"We are pleased to be able to begin integrating the operations of our companies. The combined activities will set a new benchmark for the market in terms of products and services."

In 2007, the 30-year-old Alumafel Group delivered about 10,000 tonnes of building systems products. The company also supplied some 3,000 tonnes of extruded profiles and another 5,000 tonnes of aluminium plate and bars to industrial (non-building) customers. This includes deliveries to Portugal, France and Northern Africa.

Most of the Alumafel's facilities are located in Spain's northern regions. Its main production site, in Miranda de Ebro, has two extrusion presses, painting activities, and a fully automated buffer which serves as a central warehouse and local distribution center – one of the group's 12 distribution centers throughout  the country. It also has controlling interest in an anodizing operation, Eural.

Alumafel's turnover last year was around €110 million. The group has more than 500 employees.

Stronger and more capable

The acquisition is Hydro's second in Spain this year. The company acquired the Expral extrusion plant near Madrid in April.

 "The integration of Alumafel will be a challenging task, but we feel confident that we will make it effective and successful," says Ringvold. "We will use all the Hydro knowledge from previous building systems acquisitions – like Technal – as well as the general knowledge of the Hydro group."

Hydro has been developing its position in building systems markets across the globe, as it aims to become a leader in the industry. Most of the company's building systems business takes place in Western Europe, with Italy and Spain as the region's largest domestic markets. Spain stands just behind Italy with around 140,000 tons of building systems volume annually.

"Starting today, together, we will in addition to traditional building systems activities, be much stronger and more capable in the growing and interesting market of integrated solar solutions, and in offering the most attractive brands to the Iberian market," says Ringvold.

Hydro is a Fortune Global 500 supplier of aluminium and aluminium products. Based in Norway, the company employs 22,000 people in more than 30 countries and has activities on all continents.

The largest integrated aluminium company in Europe, Hydro is one of the preferred suppliers of aluminium building systems worldwide. Its international brands – Domal, Technal and Wicona – cover the range of system products, from windows and doors for single-home residential solutions to the erection of façades on major structures such as new airports or high-rise buildings.

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