GFG settles Tata dispute, eyes UK production restart

GFG Alliance has reached an agreement in its legal dispute with Tata Steel, it tells Kallanish. The group’s Liberty Steel UK (LSUK) unit is developing a business plan to allow it to resume production, which remains intermittent at the Rotherham plant.

Tata Steel launched court proceedings earlier this year against Liberty Speciality Steels, Liberty House Group PTE, and Speciality Steel UK over non-payments relating to the sale by Tata in 2017 of Speciality Steel to Liberty Steel (see Kallanish passim).

LSUK has developed a new organisational structure under new chief executive Subhajit Roy Chowdhury. The new management composition will oversee the separation of the Stocksbridge, Brinsworth Narrow Strip, and Performance Steel assets.

Liberty’s Newport mill achieved its best-ever financial results in the first quarter, with the outlook looking even brighter for Q2, GFG says. The business improved profitability last year despite challenging market conditions caused by Covid-19.

In the EU, Liberty’s Ostrava and Galati plants posted record quarterly performance recently (see Kallanish passim), while the sale of France-based Ascoval and Rail Hayange to Stahl-Holding-Saar has been completed (see separate story).

GFG is also now back in control of its 41% stake in sustainable energy generator Simec Atlantis Energy. This follows the cessation of the receivers’ appointment over the shares of Simec UK Energy Holdings Limited in Simec Atlantis Energy and the resignation of the receivers as directors of Simec UK Energy.

GFG Alliance Chief Restructuring Officer Jeffrey S. Stein says: “It is encouraging that discussions with creditors continue to progress well and our global restructuring plans continue to develop. In many cases, refinancing options have been oversubscribed. Our core markets in steel, aluminium, and iron ore are performing beyond expectations, bolstered by high demand and record prices. This in turn has led to our core assets achieving strong financial results. While there remains much to do, we are pleased with the progress made to date and confident in the resilience of the business going forwards.”

Adam Smith Germany