Leighton Holdings has confirmed it will change its name to CIMIC Group as the construction group try’s to distance itself from corruption allegations.

Shareholders will be asked to vote on the name change at the company’s annual general meeting in Sydney on April 21.

CIMIC stands for Construction, Infrastructure, Mining and Concessions.

The name change follows the acquisition of Leighton by Spanish construction group ACS a year ago, and the subsequent restructure of the company.

Leighton also plans to change its ticker symbol on the Australian Securities Exchange to “CIM” from “LEI”.

The name change will require the approval of at least 75 per cent of votes cast by eligible shareholders. ACS currently controls 70 per cent of Leighton via its ownership of Leighton’s majority shareholder Hochtief.

Leighton’s board, which is chaired by its chief executive Marcelino Fernández Verdes, has already approved the name change.

Leighton continues to be haunted by corruption allegations as the federal police and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission investigate former Leighton executives over the company’s dealings between 2009 and 2011, prior to its takeover by ACS early last year.

The police are expected to charge several former executives over alleged bribery linked to a multimillion-dollar oil pipeline in Iraq.

Fresh allegations of corruption emerged this year, with Fairfax revealing in February that Indian police demanded Bruce Munro, who runs Leighton’s Thiess division, submit himself for questioning at an Indian police station over allegations he cheated a business partner in a multibillion-dollar coal deal.



  • did they really think long and hard about this new name 'CIMIC'?
    Will cause lots of confusion with a Chinese shipping container manufacturer (worlds largest) and port equipment engineering company CIMC.

  • Good point, Rob.

    Doesn't sound like it will be a strong brand name. Whilst to be fair, one does understand why they would want to put their past behind them, this new name is clunky, unmemorable, most uninspiring and – as you say – easily confused with another entity. This sound more like the name of a private equity firm or hedge fund than a company which is serious about having a brand which has trust within the marketplace. When OneSteel changed its name to Arrium, it at least chose a name that not only reflected the business it was in but was easy to say and reasonably memorable. Who on earth will remember a name like CIMIC?

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