Breedon said that Barr Quarries was the market-leader in aggregates in southwest Scotland, with 11 quarries, five asphalt plants and six ready-mixed concrete plants. Its operations extend from Dalry in the north to Stranraer in the south and east to Moffat.
Completion of the acquisition is expected by the end of this month and remains subject to TUPE consultations and final due diligence.
Barr Quarries employs approximately 130 people and is headquartered near Cumnock, 35 miles south of Glasgow.
It has approximately 57 million tonnes of mineral reserves and resources, enough to last approximately 70 years at current rates of extraction. It also operates a successful contract surfacing business.
In the year to 31 December 2013 Barr Quarries generated sales of £25.5m with an underlying EBITDA of £2.7m. Sales in 2014 are ahead of last year.
The deal gives Breedon a fifth self-contained region in Scotland. Following the acquisition of Barr, Breedon will have 54 active quarries, 27 asphalt plants and 60 ready-mixed concrete and mortar plants stretching from the Hebrides in northern Scotland to Lydney in Gloucestershire. At that point the group will employ around 1,250 people and have more than 450 million tonnes of mineral reserves and resources.
Breedon chairman Peter Tom said: “Scotland has played a vital part in Breedon’s success and we have made significant investments there over the past four years. With the uncertainties surrounding the independence issue now behind us, we believe our prospects north of the border have never been brighter and we can look ahead with renewed confidence. Our acquisition of Barr Quarries is a clear demonstration of our long-term commitment to this important market.
“Barr Quarries represents a great opportunity to secure some rare assets in a brand-new region, which perfectly complements our existing operations in Scotland. It’s an excellent business with a fine heritage, and great people – all of whom we look forward to welcoming to the Breedon family.”
Barr Holdings chairman Philip Cheevers said that the sale would “give the quarry business the opportunity to further grow and develop under the umbrella of a major aggregates company”.
He added: “At Barr we will continue to focus on our core construction business, which is performing well, and on our environmental business, which has made significant progress over the last few years and is trading very strongly.”