ThyssenKrupp mulling possible Americas sale

May 15, 2012 | 01:51 PM | Michael Cowden

Tags  ThyssenKrupp, Steel Americas, Heinrich Hiesinger, slab, flat-rolled, divestiture, parternship, Michael Cowden

TORONTO — ThyssenKrupp AG said it is mulling "strategic options" for its Steel Americas operations as it calls into doubt its business model of shipping slab made in Brazil to finishing facilities in Mobile, Ala.

Those options could include either a sale or a partnership for the plants in the United States and Brazil, the German steelmaker said Tuesday as it reported a 69-percent drop in earnings during the first six months of its fiscal year.

Current economics no longer support the Steel Americas model of turning profits by shipping low-cost slab from Brazil to high-end markets in North America, according to the company. That set-up, developed in 2007, had assumed low-cost slab production in Brazil and more robust demand in North America, ThyssenKrupp said. But with production costs in Brazil rising and a slower-than-expected recovery in the United States, that strategy now leaves ThyssenKrupp exposed to "considerable risks," the company said.....





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