Tata Steel UK today announced that it has completed sale of its speciality steel business to Liberty House Group for 100 million pound. The struggling steelmaker said the sale includes several South Yorkshire-based assets, including electric arc steelworks and bar mill at Rotherham, steel-purifying facility in Stocksbridge and a mill in Brinsworth. Besides, it covers service centres in Bolton and Wednesbury, UK, and Suzhou and Xi’an, China, the company said in a statement.
The speciality steel business directly employs nearly 1,700 people making steel for aerospace, automotive and oil and gas industries. Tata Steel UK CEO Bimlendra Jha said that in the last couple of years, Tata Steel has been undertaking a transformation plan at the speciality steel division.
It included investment in the state-of-the-art vacuum induction melting furnace to ensure the business has a sustainable future, he added. The company said it had recently completed consultation with its employees on proposals to structurally reduce risks in its wider UK business. Discussions are also on with the British steel pension scheme trustees and pension regulator to develop a structural solution for its UK pension scheme in coming months, the company added.
For the UK strip product business, the company said it continues the process of transformation that is essential to create a viable future. Tata Steel’s strip product business will continue to employ almost 8,500 people in the UK, manufacturing products for sectors like automotive and construction industries.
Tata Steel has invested 1.5 billion pound in its UK business since acquiring Corus in 2007. These include improvement of manufacturing capability for production of premium steels in Shotton, Llanwern, Trostre, and Orb in Newport as well as environmental schemes for Port Talbot’s power plant.
In February, the global steel giant had inked a pact to sell its speciality steel business.
The completion of the transaction was subject to regulatory clearances, the company had said then. It had also said the parties would be working to complete consultation with employees and transfer of supplier and customer contracts.