Six companies account for 85 per cent of the flat steel production capacity in India’s steel sector

Six companies account for 85 per cent of the flat steel production capacity in India’s steel sector

Bhushan Steel gets new management

With an Indian court approving Bhushan Steel’s takeover by Tata Steel, the country’s steel sector may see further consolidation

June 2018

A new management team has been put into place at Bhushan Steel Ltd after it was acquired by Tata Steel Ltd through India’s new insolvency and bankruptcy process, reported PTI.

Rajeev Singhal has taken over as the new managing director of the steelmaker, while Krishnava Dutt has been appointed independent director, according to information on Bhushan Steel’s website. “All appointments are with effect from May 18, 2018,” a company official said.

On May 18, Tata Steel – which had won the bid for Bhushan Steel in an insolvency process – completed the acquisition of 72.65 per cent stake in the debt-laden firm. Lenders to Bhushan Steel also received 7.25 crore equity shares worth Rs 2 each, after conversion of Rs 14.5 crore worth loans in the company, the exchange notification said.

With this acquisition, Bhushan Steel became the first of the 12 large corporate accounts which were referred for insolvency action in June 2017 by lenders, after the Reserve Bank of India directed them to do so.

Meanwhile, industry sources are expecting to see further consolidation in India’s flat steel sector.

“Based on various acquisition scenarios, the flat steel market in India is expected to consolidate further from the current scenario (of 85 per cent being controlled by six players) to anywhere between three to four players,” ratings agency Crisil said.

“As the dynamics of a more consolidated industry play out in India’s flat steel space, spreads between landed and domestic prices are expected to narrow. Higher utilisation and volumes, coupled with better pricing, will bode well for the profitability of players,” Rahul Prithiani, director of Crisil Research said.

Tata Steel can produce about 10 million mt per year of flat steel while Bhushan Steel has a production capacity of 5 million mt per year, Crisil said. A combination will transform the former into a leading producer of flat steel in India, as the leader is currently JSW Steel with about 13 million mt per year of capacity.

In India’s steel sector, six companies account for 85 per cent of the flat steel production capacity, of which three are undergoing insolvency proceedings under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

The six flat steel players are Tata Steel, JSW Steel, Steel Authority of India, Bhushan Steel, Bhushan Power and Steel and Essar Steel. The last three companies are under bankruptcy proceedings.

Meanwhile, German company thyssenkrupp expects to sign a planned deal to merge its steel business with Tata Steel Europe by the end of June, with completion by the end of the year, its chief financial officer said. Guido Kerkhoff, speaking on a quarterly earnings call, said the schedule depended on competition authorities’ response.

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