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Turkey steel distributor debuts US joint venture

Keywords: Tags  Agir Haddecilik, Kerem Vaizoglu, Intermetal Rebar, steel, Sean Davidson

ISTANBUL — The trading arm of a Turkish flat steel distributor has partnered with a U.S. service center to sell its products in the United States and surrounding markets.

Intermetal Rebar LLC, a joint venture between Istanbul-based Agir Haddecilik International LLP, a division of Agir Haddecilik AS, and Miami-based Intermetal LLC, was launched in late January.

"After trading on flats, longs and raw materials, we have taken (it) one step further and decided to be local in the U.S. market," Agir Haddecilik International partner Kerem Vaizoglu told AMM. "Intermetal is one of the biggest scrap collectors in south Florida and a very important player in steel trading for the Caribbean, Central and South American markets."

Intermetal Rebar has started trading and distributing rebar and steel rod through Texas, Florida’s Port Everglades and some ports in the Northeast, and will diversify its product types depending on customers’ needs, Vaizoglu said.

"We are neither in a rush nor acting slow. With these two products we are aiming to do 20,000 tonnes (in U.S. sales) every 45 days, which we are not far away from," he said. "Then again, we will not do anything that may disturb the market just to be able to do more tonnage. We know better than that."

Turkish products enjoy some competitive advantages in the United States, Vaizoglu said. "Turkish mills have very competitive prices since they have very efficient production. Also, being able to buy futures gives us a chance to make a purchase at the time the raw material prices are low. So when we receive the products, we have a competitive price in the market, which gives our customers the edge to compete.

"Since our U.S. partner is in the scrap metal trade, it gives us an advantage or edge to be ahead of the market when price is becoming bearish or bullish, which gives us a good advantage to predict movement and act accordingly," he added.

The company expects Port Everglades, Houston and New Orleans to be its three most active markets.

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