NEW YORK Scrap industry
veteran and Hugo Neu Corp. chairman John L. Neu died Feb.
27 in New York. He was 74.
"He was a great philanthropist
and businessman, a pioneer in the recycling industry and an
ardent supporter of social justice, animal rights and the
environment," a company spokesman said.
Neu worked with New York-based
Hugo Neua company his father, Hugo Neu, set up in
1947for 50 years and was set to return to the daily
ferrous scrap metal recycling business this year after a long
He was a former venture partner
with Portland, Ore.-based Schnitzer Steel Industries Inc. and
was once Sims Group Ltd.s largest shareholder. Sims
acquired Hugo Neus scrap operationsincluding export
yards on the East and West coasts, as well as 15 scrap feeder
yardson Oct. 31, 2005, exactly one year after Hugo Neu
and Schnitzer ended their decadelong joint export
Schnitzer entered that venture
when it acquired Proler International Corp., a Houston-based
scrap processor that had worked with Hugo Neu, for about $500
million and the assumption of $155 million debt.
John Neu was named vice chairman
of Sims and was given a seat on Sims board with a
26-percent share of the company. Relations between Neu and Sims
became strained, and Neu left the company and sold 19.9 percent
of his stake in Sims to Mitsui & Co. Ltd., Tokyo, in 2007
for about $491 million. However, he retained a minority stake
of about 2 percent.
Hugo Neu made a return to the
daily scrap business in August 2009, when it bailed out
electronics recycler WeRecycle LLC, which was operating under
Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The company made a $6-million
to $7-million investment to take over as majority owner of
reorganized WeRecycle Inc., based in Mount Vernon, N.Y.
AMM learned in October
2011 that Hugo Neu would return to the ferrous scrap arena,
with a large operation in Puerto Rico (
amm.com, Oct. 6, 2011). The project is expected to
come online in the coming months.
John Neu is survived by his
wife, Hugo Neu chief executive officer Wendy Kelman Neu.
The funeral service is scheduled
for March 4 at Frank E. Campbell Funeral Chapel, 1076 Madison
Avenue at E. 81st St., New York.