CRH operates in 31 countries. CRH is a top two building materials company globally and the largest in North America. The Group is the largest heavyside player in Europe and has established strategic positions in the emerging economic regions of Asia and South America.
The Group has good balance across its operations in North America and Europe. Our heavyside building materials operations give us exposure to new-build and also to infrastructure repair, maintenance and improvement (RMI) construction. Elsewhere, our lightside and distribution businesses are mainly exposed to residential and nonresidential markets, where we also have positions of scale, global brands and potential for growth.
Our strategic priority in these mature markets is to develop our businesses further through a dynamic allocation and reallocation of capital, investment in greenfield projects and in acquisitions which meet our criteria of achieving vertical integration, and which add to reserves and expand our regional and product positions.
In emerging economic regions, such as Asia, our entry platforms tend to be in cement. Industrialisation, urbanisation and population growth are key drivers in these markets and CRH targets businesses that have the potential to develop further downstream into integrated building materials businesses as construction markets become more sophisticated.