Growth in Metropolitan Areas

Vertical Integration

Urbanisation is one of the mega trends of our century. The world’s metropolitan areas are constantly growing; more and more people are moving from the countryside to the cities. Metropolitan areas have limited space though, presenting big challenges to urban developers.

The only way to meet the basic needs for accommodation, work, and mobility in the future is through three-dimensional growth. This includes bridges and tunnels for transport and high-rise buildings for offices and homes. All these constructions require a stable and long-lasting building material: concrete – made from a mixture of cement, water, sand, and gravel – is the number one choice. It’s not by chance that concrete is the second most commonly used substance on our planet after water.

The growth of metropolitan areas is also very challenging for building materials producers and construction companies because concrete needs to be processed rapidly. The right quantity must be in the right place at the right time, notwithstanding urban traffic and congestion – and as environmentally friendly as possible, of course. Contracts are usually awarded to those companies who can best fulfil these requirements.

Aware of this challenge, Heidelberg Materials deliberately focuses on vertical integration in metropolitan areas. Thanks to the networking of our own raw material deposits with strategically located terminals and local production sites, as well as the IT-supported logistics management, we consider ourselves to be well positioned to benefit from the growth in metropolitan areas.