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2.71.001.001.00P2YP1YP1YP1YP1Y1.4293.2882.1430.930.70.5920.230.220.220.930.70.983.262.1261.4183.2882.031.4293.262.0141.418532.1431.4293.2882.1261.4183.262.0301.4293.2882.0141.4183.26falseFYCRH PUBLIC LTD CO0.1130000849395trueL2IEIE0.11210520kg of CO2 per tonneThe Rest of Europe principally includes Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Ukraine.The Rest of World principally includes Australia, Brazil, Canada and the Philippines.Americas Materials and Europe Materials both operate vertically integrated businesses, which are founded in resource-backed cement and aggregates assets and which support the manufacture and supply of aggregates, asphalt, cement, readymixed and precast concrete and landscaping products. Accordingly, for the purpose of disaggregation of revenue we have included certain products together, as this is how management reviews and evaluates this business line.Additions to property, plant and equipment include $10 million (2020: $14 million; 2019: $96 million) relating to leased mineral reserves which fall outside the scope of IFRS 16.Depreciation, amortisation and impairment analysis Total impairment charges for the year ended 31 December 2021 amounted to $nil million (2020: $827 million, including a charge of $154 million related to equity accounted investments as detailed in note 15; 2019: $8 million).Audit of the Group accounts includes the audit of internal control over financial reporting and parent and subsidiary statutory audit fees, but excludes $3 million (2020: $3 million; 2019: $3 million) paid to auditors other than Deloitte (2021 and 2020) and EY (2019).With effect from 2020, following a competitive tender process, Deloitte Ireland LLP (Deloitte) was appointed as auditor of the Group, replacing Ernst & Young (EY). In the table above, auditor’s remuneration for services provided during the years ended 31 December 2021 and 2020 thus relates to Deloitte and for the year ended 31 December 2019 to EY.Audit fees in 2019, including discontinued operations, amounted to $20 million. Other audit-related assurance fees in 2019, including discontinued operations, amounted to $nil million and tax advisory services in 2019, including discontinued operations, amounted to $1 million.On 31 December 2019, CRH completed the sale of the Group’s 50% stake in its joint venture in India, My Home Industries Limited (MHIL), for deferred proceeds of $0.3 billion which will be received in several agreed tranches.Employment costs in 2019, including discontinued operations, are analysed as follows:Directors’ emoluments (which are included in administrative expenses in note 4) are presented in note 32.Pursuant to the 2010 and 2021 Savings-related Share Option Schemes operated by the Group, employees were granted options over 455,068 of CRH plc’s Ordinary Shares in October 2021 (2020: nil; 2019: 556,493 share options in April 2019 and 100,297 share options in May 2019). This figure comprises options over 346,237 (2020: nil; 2019: 518,944) shares and 108,831 (2020: nil; 2019: 137,846) shares which are normally exercisable within a period of six months after the third or the fifth anniversary of the contract, whichever is applicable. The exercise price at which the options are granted under the scheme represents a discount of 15% to the market price on the date of invitation of each savings contract.The weighted average share price at the date of exercise of these options was €42.53 (2020: €31.70; 2019: €28.52).All options granted have a life of ten years. All outstanding options are denominated in euro and have an exercise price of €16.19 (2020: €16.19; 2019: €16.19).The weighted average share price at the date of exercise of these options was €42.10 (2020: €31.70; 2019: €29.10).Numbers represent the initial awards including those granted to employees of Europe Distribution in 2019. The Remuneration Committee has determined that dividend equivalents will accrue on awards under the 2014 Performance Share Plan. Subject to satisfaction of the applicable performance criteria, such dividend equivalents will be released to participants in the form of additional shares on vesting.The total share-based payment expense in 2019, including discontinued operations, amounted to $86 million.The Group uses interest rate swaps to convert fixed rate debt to floating rate. Fixed rate debt, which has been converted to floating rate through the use of interest rate swaps, is stated in the Consolidated Balance Sheet at adjusted value to reflect movements in underlying fixed rates. The movement on this adjustment, together with the offsetting movement in the fair value of the related interest rate swaps, is included in finance costs in each reporting period.Net finance costs in 2019, including discontinued operations, amounted to $498 million.In 2021 the 5% Cumulative Preference Shares paid a dividend of €3,175 (2020: €3,175; 2019: €3,175) and the 7% ‘A’ Cumulative Preference Shares paid a dividend of €77,521 (2020: €77,521; 2019: €77,521).Interim and final dividends per share declared previously in euro have been translated to US Dollar using the dividend record date exchange rate.Translation adjustment arising from US Dollar declared dividends paid in non-US Dollar currencies.The weighted average number of Ordinary Shares included in the computation of basic and diluted earnings per Ordinary Share has been adjusted to exclude shares held by the Employee Benefit Trust and Ordinary Shares repurchased and held by the Company (CRH plc) as Treasury Shares given that these shares do not rank for dividend. The number of Ordinary Shares so held at the balance sheet date is detailed in note 29.Ordinary shares, that would only be issued contingent on certain conditions (totalling 4,369,938 at 31 December 2021, 4,053,377 at 31 December 2020 and 3,618,278 at 31 December 2019) are excluded from the computation of diluted earnings per Ordinary Share where the conditions governing exercisability have not been satisfied as at the end of the reporting period or they are antidilutive for the periods presented.The combined impairment charge in notes 13 and 20 of $nil million (2020: $263 million; 2019: $9 million). [The charge in 2020 principally relates to the write-down of specific assets relating to our UK business within our Europe Materials segment following a strategic review of its operational footprint, together with impairments booked in respect of two CGUs in the same segment. An extended period of lower than anticipated demand and reduced price growth resulting from the combined economic impacts of Brexit and COVID-19 were the primary drivers of the impairment charge. The recoverable amount of these assets is their value-in-use of $185 million and is calculated using real pre-tax discount rates ranging from 7.3% to 7.7%].The customer-related intangible assets relate predominantly to non-contractual customer relationships.The amortisation charge primarily relates to customer-related intangible assets.Further details on note (iii) are set out overleaf. The Group’s share of joint ventures and associates profit/(loss) after tax is equity accounted and is presented as a single line item in the Consolidated Income Statement. It is analysed as follows; profit after tax from joint ventures: $11 million (2020: $22 million; 2019: $46 million), profit after tax from associates: $44 million (2020: loss after tax of $140 million; 2019: profit after tax of $21 million).In 2020 an impairment charge of $154 million is recorded within the loss after tax from associates which principally relates to the write-down of our equity accounted investment in China which forms part of Europe Materials. Challenging market conditions in Northeast China affecting pricing, combined with an increase in the discount rate and the economic impact of COVID-19, were the primary drivers of the impairment charge. In 2020, the recoverable amount of this financial asset was its value-in-use calculated using a real pre-tax discount rate of 9.2%.Work-in-progress includes $9 million (2020: $9 million) in respect of the cumulative costs incurred, net of amounts transferred to cost of sales under percentage-of-completion accounting, for construction contracts in progress at the balance sheet date.Construction contract-related payables include billings in excess of revenue, together with advances received from customers in respect of work to be performed under construction contracts and foreseeable losses thereon. $288 million was recognised in the Consolidated Income Statement during 2021 which was included in the contract-related payables balance at 31 December 2020. The movements in these balances during the year was as follows:The fair value of total contingent consideration is $317 million (2020: $301 million) (Level 3 in the fair value hierarchy), and deferred consideration is $44 million (2020: $63 million). On an undiscounted basis, the corresponding future payments relating to contingent consideration, for which the Group may be liable, ranges from $296 million to $449 million. This is based on a range of estimated potential outcomes of the expected payment amounts primarily dependent on underlying performance metrics as set out in the relevant agreements. The fair value of contingent consideration is arrived at through discounting the expected payment to present value. Based on a reasonable possible change in assumptions, the fair value ranges from $249 million to $380 million on a discounted basis. The movement in deferred and contingent consideration during the financial year was as follows:In January 2021 the Group repaid a $400 million bond upon maturity and in April 2021 a €600 million bond was repaid early when a 3-month par-call option was exercised. Of the Group’s nominal fixed rate debt at 31 December 2021, $1,800 million (2020: $1,835 million) is hedged to a mix of USD LIBOR and EURIBOR floating rates using interest rate swaps.Floating rate debt comprises bank borrowings bearing interest at rates set in advance for periods ranging from overnight to less than one year largely by reference to inter-bank interest rates.At 31 December 2021 and 31 December 2020, a portion of the Group’s long-term debt carried variable interest rates. The Group uses the interest rates in effect on 31 December to calculate the interest payments on the long-term debt for the periods indicated.The Group uses interest rate swaps to help manage its interest cost. Under these contracts the Group has agreed to exchange at predetermined intervals, the net difference between fixed and variable interest amounts calculated by reference to a pre-agreed notional principal. The Group uses the interest rates in effect on 31 December to calculate the net interest receipts or payments on these contracts.This provision relates to obligations arising under the self-insurance components of the Group’s insurance arrangements which comprise employers’ liability (workers’ compensation in the US), public and products liability (general liability in the US), automobile liability, property damage, business interruption and various other insurances; a substantial proportion of the total provision pertains to claims which are classified as “incurred but not reported”. Due to the extended timeframe associated with many of the insurances, a significant proportion of the total provision is subject to periodic actuarial valuation. The projected cash flows underlying the discounting process are established through the application of actuarial triangulations, which are extrapolated from historical claims experience. The triangulations applied in the discounting process indicate that the Group’s insurance provisions have an average life of four years (2020: four years).This provision comprises obligations governing site remediation, restoration and environmental works to be incurred in compliance with either local or national environmental regulations together with constructive obligations stemming from established best practice. The value of current obligations is $96 million (2020: $106 million), whilst $310 million (2020: $301 million) of the total provision will reverse in the medium-term (two to ten years). The value of legal and constructive obligations applicable to long-lived assets (principally mineral-bearing land) that will unwind over a 30-year timeframe is $275 million (2020: $277 million). In discounting the related obligations, expected future cash outflows have been determined with due regard to extraction status and anticipated remaining life. The discount rates used are consistent with the timing of the expected future cash outflows of the provision and the economic environment of the jurisdiction where the provision will be settled.These provisions relate to irrevocable commitments under various rationalisation and redundancy programmes, none of which are individually material to the Group. In 2021, $29 million (2020: $111 million; 2019: $32 million) was provided in respect of rationalisation and redundancy activities as a consequence of undertaking various cost reduction initiatives across all operations. These initiatives included removing excess capacity from manufacturing and distribution networks and scaling operations to match supply and demand. The Group expects that these provisions will primarily be utilised within one to two years of the balance sheet date (2020: one to two years).Other provisions primarily relate to legal claims and also include onerous contracts, guarantees and warranties and employee related provisions. The Group expects the majority of these provisions will be utilised within one to five years of the balance sheet date (2020: one to five years); however due to the nature of the legal provisions there is a level of uncertainty in the timing of settlement as the Group generally cannot determine the extent and duration of the legal process.Repayment of lease liabilities amounted to $328 million (2020: $326 million; 2019: $433 million), of which $64 million (2020: $68 million; 2019: $77 million) related to interest paid which is presented in cash flows from operating activities.Additions relating to leased mineral reserves which fall outside the scope of IFRS 16.See note 20 for more detailed information on right-of-use assets and lease liabilities of the Group.Fair value adjustments arising on acquisition principally relate to property, plant and equipment.During 2021, CRH repurchased a total of 17,829,602 Ordinary Shares returning a further $0.9 billion of cash to shareholders. This brings total cash returned to shareholders under the share buyback programme (‘the Programme’) to $2.9 billion since its commencement in May 2018.These reissued Treasury Shares were previously purchased at an average price of $37.15 (2020: $32.45).As at the balance sheet date, the nominal value of the Treasury Shares and own shares was €1.1 million and €0.1 million respectively (2020: €3.4 million and €0.1 million respectively). Dividends have been waived by the Trustees of the own shares.Pursuant to a special resolution approved by shareholders at the Annual General Meeting of the Company held on 29 April 2021 and the subsequent order of the High Court of Ireland made on 3 June 2021, the capital of the Company was reduced by the entire amount standing to the credit of the Company’s share premium account as at 31 December 2020, with the reserve resulting from the reduction being treated as profits available for distribution as defined by Section 117 of the Companies Act 2014. A copy of the aforementioned order of the High Court was filed with the Companies Registration Office in Ireland on 3 June 2021.The gross contractual value of trade and other receivables as at the respective dates of acquisition amounted to $192 million (2020: $47 million; 2019: $74 million). The fair value of these receivables is $191 million (all of which is expected to be recoverable) (2020: $47 million; 2019: $73 million). The principal factor contributing to the recognition of goodwill on acquisitions entered into by the Group is the realisation of cost savings and other synergies with existing entities in the Group which do not qualify for separate recognition as intangible assets. Due to the asset-intensive nature of operations in the Americas Materials and Europe Materials business segments, no significant separately identifiable intangible assets are recognised on business combinations in these segments. $284 million of the goodwill recognised in respect of acquisitions completed in 2021 is expected to be deductible for tax purposes (2020: $148 million; 2019: $184 million). The Ordinary Shares represent 99.53% of the total issued share capital as at 31 December 2021 (2020: 93.71%).During 2021, 21,000,000 Ordinary Shares (2020: 4,500,000 Ordinary Shares including Income Shares) were cancelled. The amount paid to repurchase these shares was initially recognised in Treasury Shares/own shares and was transferred to retained income on cancellation.The Income Shares were cancelled with effect from 9 February 2021 pursuant to a resolution approved by the Shareholders at an extraordinary general meeting of the Company held on 9 February 2021 (2020: Income Shares represented 5.86% of the total issued share capital).Includes unbilled revenue and retentions held by customers in respect of construction contracts at the balance sheet date amounting to $361 million and $204 million respectively (2020: $297 million and $202 million respectively). The movements in these balances during the year was as follows:Sensitivity analysis for cost of borrowing has been presented for continuing operations only.Sensitivity analysis for exchange rates has been presented for continuing operations only.Equity instruments primarily relate to developed markets.Quoted debt instruments are made up of $1,317 million (2020: $1,288 million) and $557 million (2020: $737 million) of government and non-government instruments respectively.Unquoted debt instruments primarily relate to government debt instruments. Reconciliation to Group Balance Sheet 0000849395 2019-01-01 2019-12-31 0000849395 2020-01-01 2020-12-31 0000849395 2021-01-01 2021-12-31 0000849395 2021-12-31 0000849395 2020-12-31 0000849395 2003-09-30 0000849395 2009-08-31 0000849395 2010-12-31 0000849395 2019-12-31 0000849395 2021-01-01 2021-01-31 0000849395 2021-04-01 2021-04-30 0000849395 2022-01-01 2022-01-01 0000849395 2022-02-01 2022-02-28 0000849395 2018-12-31 0000849395 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UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
(Mark One)
  WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549  
        
FORM 20-F
 
REGISTRATION STATEMENT PURSUANT TO SECTION 12(b) OR (g) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
OR
X    ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
          For the fiscal year ended: December 31, 2021
OR
  TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
          For the transition period from     to
OR
  SHELL COMPANY REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(d) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
          Date of event requiring this shell company report
Commission file number:
001-32846
             
CRH public limited company
(Exact name of Registrant as specified in its charter)
             
Republic of Ireland
(Jurisdiction of incorporation or organisation)
             
Stonemason’s Way, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16, Ireland
(Address of principal executive offices)
             
Jim Mintern
Tel: +353 1 404 1000
mail@crh.com
Stonemason’s Way, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16, Ireland
(Name, Telephone, Email and/or Facsimile number and Address of Company Contact Person)
             
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act.
 
Title of each class
 
Trading symbol(s)
 
   Name of each exchange on which registered
 
CRH plc
       
 
Ordinary Shares of
0.32 each
     
 
New York Stock Exchange*
American Depositary Shares, each representing the right to receive one Ordinary Share   CRH   New York Stock Exchange
  *
Not for trading but only in connection with the registration of American Depositary Shares, pursuant to the requirements of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Securities registered or to be registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act. None
             
Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act. None
             
Indicate the number of outstanding shares of each of the issuer’s classes of capital or common stock as of the close of the period covered by the annual report.
 
Ordinary Shares of 
0.32 each   
      
774,140,338
5% Cumulative Preference Shares of 
1.27 each  
      
         50,000
7% ‘A’ Cumulative Preference Shares of 
1.27 each  
      
       872,000
Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes X No
If this report is an annual or transition report, indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Yes
No X
Note – Checking the box above will not relieve any registrant required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 from their obligations under those Sections.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes X No
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit such files). Yes  X   No
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, or an emerging growth company. See definition of “large accelerated filer”, “accelerated filer”, and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.
Large accelerated filer  X  Accelerated filer  
  Non-accelerated filer  
  Emerging Growth Company  
If an emerging growth company that prepares its financial statements in accordance with U.S. GAAP, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards† provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act
The term “new or revised financial accounting standard” refers to any update issued by the Financial Accounting Standards Board to its Accounting Standards Codification after April 5, 2012.
Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management’s assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report.  X
Indicate by check mark which basis of accounting the registrant has used to prepare the financial statements included in this filing:
U.S. GAAP  
   International Financial Reporting Standards as issued by the    Other   
     International Accounting Standards Board   X       
If “Other” has been checked in response to the previous question, indicate by check mark which financial statement item the registrant has elected to follow. Item 17
Item 18
If this is an annual report, indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act). Yes
No X

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Annual Report and Form 20-F

 
    
 
                      
Board of Directors     56    
Corporate Governance Report     60    
Directors’ Remuneration Report     80    
Directors’ Report     110    
   
Independent Auditors’ Reports     135    
Consolidated Financial Statements     140    
Accounting Policies     145    
Notes on Consolidated Financial Statements     155    
    216    
    246    
    258    
Cross Reference to Form 20-F     269    
Index     270    

2021 Annual Report and Form 20-F 1 Our 2021 Performance Highlights SALES $31.0 billion +12% $27.6bn 2020 $31.0bn 2021 EBITDA (AS DEFINED)* $5.35 billion +16% $4.6bn 2020 $5.35bn 2021 OPERATING PROFIT $3.6 billion +58% $2.3bn 2020 $3.6bn 2021 PEOPLE 22%females in senior leadership 6% 16% 2020 22% 2021 CIRCULAR ECONOMY million tonnes of alternative fuels and 39.5raw materials recycled 8% 36.5mt 2020 39.5mt 2021 PROFIT AFTER TAX $2.6 billion +125% $1.2bn 2020 $2.6bn 2021 EARNINGS PER SHARE 328.8 cent +130% 142.9c 2020 328.8c 2021 DIVIDEND PER SHARE 121.0 cent +5% 115.0c 2020 121.0c 2021 CLIMATE kg CO2/ $ revenue Greenhouse Gas Emissions Scope 1 1.2 and Scope 2 CO Emissions -8% 2 1.3kg CO /$ 2020 2 1.2kg CO2/$ 2021 SUSTAINABLE PRODUCTS billion revenue $11.5from products with enhanced sustainability attributes 17% $9.8bn 2020 $11.5bn 2021 EBITDA is defined as earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortisation, asset impairment charges, profit on disposals and the Group’s share of equity accounted investments’ profit after tax.

    
Our business at a glance We are organised as three operating Divisions of scale comprising Americas Materials, Europe Materials and Building Products. Our Three Operating Divisions Americas Materials +10% 2020: $11.3 billion c. 28,300 employees SALES c. 1,605 operating locations 46 US states, six Canadian provinces $12.4 billion Products & Services Aggregates • Cement • Paving and Construction Services • Readymixed Concrete • Asphalt Europe Materials +16% 2020: $9.1 billion c. 25,600 employees SALES c. 1,120 operating locations 20 Countries $10.6 billion Products & Services Aggregates • Cement • Lime • Paving and Construction Services • Infrastructural Concrete • Readymixed Concrete • Asphalt Building Products +11% 2020: $7.2 billion c. 23,500 employees SALES c. 510 operating locations 19 Countries $8.0 billion Products & Services Architectural Products • Building Envelope Infrastructure Products • Construction Accessories Our Integrated Building Solutions Story Mineral Reserves and Resources Our mineral reserves and resources are found in our extensive network of quarry locations. Building Materials We process our mineral reserves to produce primary building materials including cement, lime, aggregates, asphalt and readymixed concrete. Building Products We also produce and supply a wide range of products for construction markets globally including Architectural Products, Building Envelope Products, Infrastructure Products and Construction Accessories.

building materials and products, supplying a range of integrated solutions for use in homes. and building owners to design, engineer, test and manufacture solutions for the building envelope including curtain walls, storefronts and architectural glass. building materials and products to create highly engineered systems to collect, connect & protect vital utility infrastructure. and recycle end-to-end infrastructure solutions which connect communities using uniquely integrating materials, products, solutions and services.

 
 
 
    
    
A Record Financial Performance
    
 
2021 saw a record financial performance for CRH, attributable to the hard work of our employees, the consistent execution of our clear, focused strategy, the resilience and flexibility of the Group’s business model and ongoing initiatives to enhance and improve business and operational performance.
 
These results also reflect the value which customers place on the depth and breadth of CRH’s products and the expertise with which its skilled employees provide solutions for customers’ needs in a fast-evolving construction environment.
 
CRH grew its revenues, profit, margins, cash generation and returns on capital during 2021 with Operating Cash Flow
2
of $4.2 billion (2020: $3.9 billion) arising from record EBITDA (as defined)* of $5.35 billion (2020: $4.6 billion), enabling, amongst other investment activities, capital expenditure of $1.6 billion (2020: $1.0 billion) in existing businesses.
 
CRH continues to actively manage its portfolio of businesses, assessing the ability of each business to continue to contribute to CRH’s long-term strategy and evaluating the potential for acquisitions to enhance our business platforms through the provision of value-added solutions for customers.
 
The strength of CRH’s business model, balance sheet and cash generation provide the Board with significant optionality to invest in businesses which fit our clearly defined strategy and which can generate enhanced value for our shareholders. During 2021, CRH invested $1.5 billion (2020: $0.4 billion) on acquisitions and we have a strong pipeline of development opportunities.
 
Further details on the record performance in 2021 and implementation of CRH’s value creation strategy are set out in the Chief Executive’s report on pages 10 to 11.
 
Delivering Cash Returns And Capital
Growth For Shareholders
 
 
Dividends paid to CRH shareholders with respect to the 2020 financial year of 115.0c per share represented an increase of 25% compared to the total dividends per share declared for the 2019 financial year. In addition, during 2021 CRH continued its share buyback programme, investing $0.9 billion (2020: $0.2 billion).
 
Reflecting your Board’s confidence in CRH and its future prospects, and our objective of continuing to have a sustainable, progressive dividend policy, the Board is recommending a final dividend of 98.0c for the 2021 financial year. This represents a total dividend of 121.0c per share for the 2021 financial year, an increase of 5% compared to 2020. Since 1970 CRH’s compound annual Total Shareholder Return (‘TSR’)
3
has been 15.5% (2020: 15.1%).
 
At the 2022 Annual General Meeting, the Board will seek a renewal of the annual authority enabling the Board to continue with the share buyback programme.

2021 Annual Report and Form 20-F
 
5
   
 
    
 
    
 
 
Health & Safety A Continuing
Priority
 
 
In relation to COVID-19, the Board regularly monitored CRH’s approach, initiatives and the outcomes therefrom against available research, best practice and the experiences of the wider populations where our businesses are located.
The safety of our employees and contractors continued to receive attention during the year. Through the Board’s Safety, Environment and Social Responsibility (SESR) Committee we inputted into policies and practices relating to safety, culture and monitored performance. Notwithstanding this focus, very sadly, there were four workplace related fatalities in 2021. The background to, and the potential learnings from, each accident was carefully examined by the SESR Committee and the full Board.
The Board offers its sympathy to the families of any CRH employees and contractors who suffered bereavement as a result of COVID-19 or any other illness or as a consequence of a workplace accident.
During 2021 CRH conducted a comprehensive Group-wide employee survey seeking insights into a wide range of matters relating to their experiences as employees. This survey was complemented by a series of direct engagements, with similar objectives, between the SESR Committee and groups of employees from across CRH. In assessing the relevant information gathered from the survey and direct engagement, the Committee was able to report to the Board that safety, employee health and well-being were recognised by employees as being very important priorities for CRH and that this, including how CRH has supported employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, is appreciated and valued.
The Board is actively monitoring the very recent developments in Ukraine with a focus on the safety and security of the c.800 people who work in our Ukrainian operations.
Delivering Against Challenging ESG Targets
 
 
CRH is, and will continue to be, a leader in providing solutions in the built environment for the challenges and opportunities arising from mitigating and managing the impact of climate change and supporting environmentally sustainable economic growth.
Our 2020 Sustainability Report set out challenging targets for mitigating our environmental impact, enhancing the contributions our products and customer-solutions make to the circular economy and sustainable economic growth, ensuring the safety of our people and progressing our inclusion and diversity (I&D) agenda.
During 2021 we made positive progress against these targets and I am pleased to advise that
we expect to deliver on our decarbonisation target ahead of schedule. As a result, the SESR Committee has agreed with management and the Group has adopted an updated 2030 Group-wide carbon reduction target as set out on page 21.
In addition, to support our ongoing transparency on these matters, the Audit Committee oversaw the significant expansion of our disclosures in this document in line with the expectations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosure (TCFD), the emerging EU Taxonomy and further disclosures in respect of relevant accounting estimates and judgements.
In relation to diversity, as we develop our future leaders, we are focused on ensuring that CRH benefits from people with diverse backgrounds and experiences and has the structures in place to support them as they develop during their careers in the Group.
Your Board Making A
Positive Contribution
 
 
As Chairman I am pleased to report that your Board continues to operate very effectively and cohesively in the ongoing assessment of strategy and business performance, the purpose and culture of CRH and the quality and contributions of its people. This is due to the experience and attributes of individual Directors and the collective efforts of a diverse team of people. The performance of the Board was evaluated by an external evaluator in 2021. This process similarly concluded that the Board was performing very effectively.
During the year, Caroline Dowling and Badar Khan joined your Board bringing their relevant backgrounds, experiences and qualities to enhance the Board’s overall makeup and ability to contribute.
After a thorough process supported by an independent third party, which identified and assessed potential external and internal candidates for the role, the Board unanimously decided to appoint Jim Mintern to the role of Finance Director of CRH and to the Board in June 2021.
Since his appointment, the Group has benefited from the considerable strategic, financial and operational experience which Jim brings to the role.
As is CRH’s policy and practice, Caroline, Badar and Jim will retire at the AGM and along with all other current members of the Board will stand for re-election by shareholders. The background and experience of each Board member, along with CRH’s policies and approach to ongoing Board assessment and renewal are covered in more detail in the Nomination and Governance Committee’s Report on pages 70 to 75.
Long-term succession planning for senior executive roles continued to be a core focus for the Board in 2021. Details in relation to the Board’s approach to this important topic is set out in the Nomination & Corporate Governance Report on page 71.
Shareholder Engagement
And Board Priorities
 
 
I have again had the benefit of considerable engagement with CRH shareholders over the past 12 months, discussing with them progress against the Board’s priorities. This has enabled me to gain a detailed understanding of their perspectives and thoughts on CRH. Reports of all shareholder engagements are shared with my colleagues on the Board.
Informed by this shareholder engagement and the Board’s deliberations, the Board’s priorities during 2022 will include:
 
-
A continued focus on the ongoing safety of our people, monitoring and assessing the alignment of CRH’s culture with our values and purpose, overseeing talent management and succession planning and ensuring that people with diverse backgrounds and experiences are actively encouraged and supported;
 
-
Ensuring that CRH continues to be a leader in managing the challenges and opportunities arising from the impact of climate change and contributing to environmentally sustainable economic progress;
 
-
Encouraging and assessing management’s ongoing initiatives to enhance and improve CRH’s businesses and business performance, including the contributions of businesses working together in the provision of comprehensive customer-focused solutions;
 
-
Continuing to ensure that CRH has the appropriate, clearly communicated and shareholder-endorsed strategy and business model and capital allocation policy to support continued success and value creation.
Delivery against these priorities will support CRH’s responsibility to continue to provide attractive cash returns and capital growth to CRH’s shareholders over the short, medium and long term. I look forward to continued engagement with CRH shareholders over the next year to report on and hear their views on progress against these priorities.
Conclusion
 
 
Despite considerable external challenges, 2021 was another year of very strong delivery by CRH against its strategic and financial objectives and goals.
This delivery was made possible by the dedication, skill and quality of CRH‘s people working together as a team and benefiting from the commitment, focus, inclusiveness, and strategic insights of our CEO, Albert Manifold. The Board is very appreciative of the contributions of all of the people in CRH to its success and is very encouraged for the future given their commitment to CRH and their capabilities and potential.
Richie Boucher
Chairman
2 March 2022
 
    


Our ambition to play a leadership role in our industry’s transition to carbon neutrality is underpinned by a strategy to grow and improve our business in a sustainable and responsible way.


 
    
    
    
 
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Why Invest in CRH The ways in which we maximise shareholder value. Sustainability strategy embedded $11.5 billion 2021 Revenue from Products with Enhanced Sustainability Attributes To create long-term value, we embed sustainability principles in all areas of our strategy and business model. CRH has set a target of 50% revenue from products with sustainability attributes by 2025. Unique Solutions Capability 35% Infrastructure 33% Non-Residential 32% Residential CRH’s breadth of materials, products and services, together with its balanced exposure to construction end use demand, provides a unique opportunity to deliver integrated solutions for customers. SBTi approved climate target 25% Targeted reduction in absolute group-wide emissions by 2030 Our commitment to tackle climate change and decarbonise our operations includes an Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) approved reduction in absolute group-wide Scope 1 and Scope 2 CO emissions. We have 2 also set an ambition to become a net-zero business by 2050. Experienced leadership CRH’s world class leadership team has a proven track record of performance delivery, underpinned by ongoing talent development and succession planning. Capital allocation record $6.5 billion Cash returned to shareholders via share buybacks and dividends since 2017 Our disciplined, value focused approach to capital allocation, made possible by our industry leading balance sheet strength provides us with optionality and the ability to return cash to shareholders through dividends and buybacks. Operational and commercial efficiency 12.3% Return on Net Assets (RONA)1 +160 bps since 2017 CRH continues to demonstrate consistent growth and improvement in our returns, driven by a relentless focus on margin management, operating efficiencies and tight working capital management. Albert Manifold Group Chief Executive Jim Mintern Group Finance Director Gina Jardine Chief Human Resources Officer Randy Lake Chief Operating Officer David Dillon Executive Vice President, Chief of Staff RONA is a non-GAAP measure as defined on page 222. The GAAP figures that are most directly comparable to the components of RONA include: Group operating profit (2021: $3,585 million, 2020: $2,263 million), impairment of property, plant and equipment and intangible assets (2021: $nil million, 2020: $673 million) and total assets and total liabilities (2021: $44,670 million and $23,756 million respectively; 2020: $44,944 million and $24,596 million respectively).


2021 Annual Report and Form 20-F 9 Long-term growth fundamentals 27% Revenue Growth since 2017 There is a natural demand for CRH products driven by population and economic growth and the need to continually build and maintain the built environment. Proven acquisition model $9.1billion Development Spend since 2017 CRH builds and grows successful businesses by regularly acquiring small to mid-sized companies that complement our portfolio and adding larger strategic deals to create further platforms for growth. Cash generation track-record 70% Operating Cash Flow growth since 2017 Strong financial discipline and an unrelenting focus on value creation are hallmarks of CRH. We have a proven, robust track record in cash generation. Continuous business improvement 370 bps EBITDA (as defined)* Margin Improvement 2017 to 2021 CRH is relentlessly focused on building better businesses through operational and commercial excellence, coordinated and driven from the centre and delivered locally by our businesses around the world. Industry Leading Returns Since formation in 1970 CRH has delivered an industry-leading compound annual TSR of 15.5% (2020: 15.1%). €100 invested in CRH shares in 1970, with dividends reinvested, would now be worth €165,000. +15. Compound Annual Total Shareholder Return Dan Stover President, Americas Materials Nathan Creech President, Building Products Onne van der Weijde President, Europe Materials Juan Pablo San Agustin Chief Innovation & Sustainability Officer Isabel Foley Group General Counsel Executive Leadership Team as of 2 March 2022. Biographies included on page 265. * EBITDA is defined as earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, amortisation, asset impairment charges, profit on disposals and the Group’s share of equity accounted investments’ profit after tax.


  
    
    
 
An Evolving CRH
    
 
Market demand and societal expectation for building materials and products is evolving. As our climate changes there is an increased emphasis on the sustainability performance of structures and buildings on a full life-cycle basis. By combining our materials, products and services, including recycled end-of-life materials, into integrated solutions which can be delivered more efficiently and sustainably, we can better serve the emerging needs of customers and support them in meeting the challenges of modern construction.
 
We continue to build out our integrated solutions strategy across our materials and products businesses. It is increasingly a differentiating feature of CRH’s offering as we work closely with our customers to better understand and align with their specific challenges. At the same time we continue our focus on innovation to deliver value added solutions that improve the life cycle performance of buildings and climate resilient infrastructure. This in turn has helped us to identify additional opportunities for growth and value creation. As a result, CRH continues to be a strong and resilient business, delivering a record financial performance, with continued improvement in sales, profitability and cash generation.
 
Climate Change
 
 
In many of our markets CRH has become a valued partner in the delivery of a safer and more resilient built environment that helps to mitigate the impacts of climate change on communities.
 
We also recognise the importance of decarbonisation in addressing the challenges of climate change. We have a long track record in successful emissions reduction initiatives and we recently set ourselves a new, industry leading target to reduce our Group’s absolute carbon emissions by 25% by 2030. For further information on this target please refer to page 21.
 
We will continue to strive for further improvements across our operating footprint in support of our ambition to become a net-zero business by 2050.
 
As CRH and the world around us transitions to a low carbon economy over the coming decades, how we navigate climate-related risks and opportunities will be increasingly important. Information on how our disclosures meet the requirements of the TCFD is included on pages 28 to 31.
 
Performance Highlights
 
 
In 2021 CRH benefited from recovering market demand as economies reopened and construction activity returned to more normal levels. Positive underlying demand drove increased sales volumes in North America and Europe, while a continued focus on price improvements, coupled

2021 Annual Report and Form 20-F
 
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with decisive action taken to control costs and improve operational efficiencies, helped improve our margins despite an inflationary input cost environment.
Sales increased 12% to $31.0 billion (2020: $27.6 million) and EBITDA (as defined)* of $5.35 billion (2020: $4.6 billion) increased by 16% reflecting the benefits of our integrated solutions strategy along with strong demand growth and continued commercial discipline. On a like-for-like
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basis EBITDA (as defined)* was 11% ahead of 2020, while EBITDA (as defined)* margin of 17.3% (2020: 16.8%) increased by 50 basis points.
Net debt of $6.3 billion at year end (2020: $5.9 billion) reflects strong inflows from operations, disciplined capital expenditure and value focused investments. The Group’s Net Debt/EBITDA (as defined)*
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was 1.2x (2020: 1.3x) at year end.
Profit after tax was significantly ahead of 2020 at $2.6 billion (2020: $1.2 billion) driven by a strong trading performance and the non-recurrence of non-cash impairment charges and one-off restructuring costs in the prior year. Earnings per share (EPS) for the year was 130% higher than 2020 at 328.8c (2020: 142.9c), reflecting a strong trading performance and the non-recurrence of non-cash impairment charges and restructuring charges in the prior year. This represented a 35% increase on a pre-impairment basis (2020 EPS pre-impairment: 243.3c). Our relentless focus on continuous business improvement helped contribute to a further increase in returns. RONA for the year was 12.3% (2020: 10.1%).
Operational Highlights
 
 
In our Americas Materials Division, solid volumes, pricing progression and good operating performance resulted in EBITDA (as defined)* of $2.6 billion (2020: $2.4 billion) up 7% on a like-for-like basis with sales of $12.4 billion (2020: $11.3 billion).
In Europe Materials, EBITDA (as defined)* of $1.4 billion (2020: $1.1 billion) on sales of $10.6 billion (2020: $9.1 billion) was 22% ahead of prior year on a like-for-like basis reflecting good volume growth and price progress against a prior year comparative that was heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Strong demand for residential construction drove increased sales across all platforms in our Building Products Division, which reported sales of $8.0 billion (2020: $7.2 billion) with EBITDA (as defined)* of $1.4 billion (2020: $1.2 billion) 8% ahead on a like-for-like basis.
Across all of our divisions positive pricing actions, cost savings and performance initiatives helped to minimise the impact of a challenging inflationary environment.
Portfolio Management And Capital Allocation
 
 
We continued to maintain our disciplined and value-focused approach to capital allocation. Development activity returned to more normal levels as visibility improved and COVID-19 related disruption eased. During the year the Group invested $1.5 billion (2020: $0.4 billion) in 20 bolt-on acquisitions. This included the addition of businesses such as National Pipe & Plastics (NPP) in the United States (US) which further enhance our end-to-end solutions offering to our customers.
Total proceeds from business divestments and asset disposals
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was $0.5 billion (2020: $0.3 billion) including the sale of our Brazil cement operations for a total consideration of $0.2 billion.
We also continued our share buyback programme with a further $0.9 billion (2020: $0.2 billion) of shares repurchased during 2021, reflecting CRH’s strong financial position and commitment to returning cash to shareholders.
On 28 February 2022, the Group entered into a binding agreement to divest of its Building Envelope business to KPS Capital Partners, LP for an enterprise value of $3.8 billion. The transaction is subject to customary conditions and regulatory approvals. The decision to divest, at an attractive valuation, follows a comprehensive review of the business and demonstrates CRH’s active approach to portfolio management, the efficient allocation of capital and the creation of a simpler and more focused Group.
Sustainability
 
 
Sustainability is deeply embedded in our business strategy, ensuring that CRH continues to prosper and grow in the long term. We believe that our actions have a positive impact on the world around us. In 2021 this included further increases in our use of alternative and recycled materials in our products and integrated building solutions, and increasing the amount of revenue attributable to sustainable products.
Safety
 
 
We continue to maintain our uncompromising approach to ensuring the health and safety of our employees, contractors, customers and the general public. In 2021 this included the further development of best practice safety management systems and health and wellbeing programmes across all our locations.
Despite our best efforts I regret to report that there were four workplace related fatalities in 2021, one of which involved an employee at one of our facilities and three road traffic incidents involving the fatality of a contractor and two third parties.
Our People
 
 
The record performance achieved in 2021 is testament to the hard work, commitment and resilience of each and every one of our employees, who despite the challenging backdrop of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, continued to deliver for the customers and communities that depend on us. We are fortunate to have an exceptionally talented and diverse team operating across our global business. As our business evolves, so do the demands on our leadership team. To deliver differently we must organise differently. In 2021 Randy Lake was appointed Chief Operating Officer, responsible for ongoing business improvement, formulating and executing our climate strategy, ensuring we align our teams and processes to drive innovation, and positioning CRH for further growth and the achievement of its full potential. I am also pleased to report that 2021 saw CRH continue to make progress on building a more inclusive company, one which fosters a sense of belonging and empowers people to be their best. Our agenda for change in this area is Chief Executive led and remains a top priority for CRH.
Outlook
 
 
We expect the underlying demand and pricing backdrop to remain favourable in 2022 albeit against an inflationary input cost environment and continued supply chain challenges. Our Americas Materials Division benefits from continuing favourable economic conditions and strong market positions. Federal funding for infrastructure is underpinned by the passing of the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package by the US Congress, while the residential market is expected to continue to grow driven by robust demand. The backdrop in Europe is expected to be positive with continued growth in our key markets. In our Europe Materials Division, we continue to benefit from strong market positions in growing economies in Eastern Europe and attractive markets in Western Europe. Although cost inflation headwinds are anticipated to continue in the near-term, we expect to deliver further progress in 2022 supported by good demand and commercial discipline. We expect our Building Products Division to deliver further growth supported by good commercial management, increased activity and continued cost saving initiatives. Although there are a number of challenges and uncertainties across our markets, CRH’s uniquely integrated and value-added solutions strategy, together with a strong and flexible balance sheet, leaves us well positioned for another year of progress.
Albert Manifold
Chief Executive
2
March 2022
 
    

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Market Backdrop
Building materials play an essential role in shaping the world around us. Market fundamentals including population and economic growth, drive demand for CRH’s materials, products and solutions.
 
CRH is the global leader in building materials, serving the needs of the construction industry in 28 countries around the world.
We support the delivery of critical infrastructure required for society to function. As communities develop, populations grow and economic activity increases, so too does demand for our materials, products and customer-focused solutions.
CRH is ideally positioned to service the demand requirements of construction projects in local markets through its extensive network of mineral reserves, production, manufacturing and logistics assets which are strategically located in mature attractive construction markets globally.
 

 
    

2021 Annual Report and Form 20-F
 
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