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Nucor, Metinvest, CSN submit bids for Sparrows Point - 30 July 2012

Three companies submitted bids by last week's deadline for RG Steel’s Sparrows Point sheet mill in Maryland, a source familiar with the negotiations confirmed to Platts Steel Business Briefing. The three companies are US-based minimill Nucor, Brazilian steelmaker CSN and Ukraine mining and steelmaking group Metinvest.

RG Steel filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in May. A judge ruled the Baltimore area steelmaker has until August 24 to close a sale agreement. The bid amounts were not available.

The foreign interest in the RG Steel mill did not come as a surprise to market observers contacted by Platts SBB, but the Nucor bid raised some eyebrows. One of Sparrows Point’s closest competitors is Nucor Steel Berkeley in South Carolina - America's only other major east coast sheet producer.

Also, the Sparrows Point facility is unionized. “It is highly unlikely Nucor will touch anything with a union,” said industry analyst Chuck Bradford of Bradford Research Inc.

United Steelworkers Local 9477 represents Sparrows Point workers and local union president Joe Rosel was pleased with the level of interest. “We were looking for strategic steelmakers with the raw material wherewithal to run the facility. If those are the three (bidders), we are happy to have those kinds of people interested,” he said.


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