Arrium acquired by British industrial group


South Australian steelmaking business Arrium has been acquired by Liberty House, a British industrial and metals company.

The sale includes Arrium’s iron ore mining operations, Whyalla port and rail infrastructure, Whyalla Steelworks, OneSteel Scrap Recycling, OneSteel Secondary Steelworks, OneSteel Reinforcing, and Australian Tube Mills.

Liberty House chief executive Sanjeev Gupta has said the Whyalla Steelworks plant is fundamentally sound, however it will require some further investments. According to Gupta, Whyalla Steelworks could return to profit with good management and investments.

He has assured that he will maintain Arrium’s current workforce.

Arrium went into voluntary administration in 2016, with over $4 billion of debt.

A Korean consortium was chosen as the preferred bidder for the company in June, however GFG Alliance (owned by Gupta) upped its bid on Tuesday night.

“Taking all factors into consideration, including the timeframes required to complete a sale, the administrators and sale advisers Morgan Stanley, decided the GFG Alliance offer was superior to the conditional offer of the Korean consortium with whom we were negotiating,” said deed administrator Mark Mentha.

Speaking of the employees at Arrium, he said the sale “ensures their future and ends 15 months of uncertainty”.

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