Liberty Steel foresees 50 UK net job reductions

Liberty Steel is envisaging a net reduction of some 50 jobs in the UK as part of its ongoing restructuring process. 162 roles will be scrapped at the High Value Manufacturing Stocksbridge plant and 45 at the Performance Steels business in West Bromwich, while up to 161 positions will be added at Rotherham.

The Stocksbridge and West Bromwich sites are part of Liberty’s non-core special alloys businesses, for which the company previously announced it was seeking either an outright sale or partnership. Investment into the ramp-up of “GREENSTEEL” production at the electric arc furnace-based Rotherham steelworks will meanwhile require an expanded workforce.

“LIBERTY’s special alloys are unique, high potential businesses, and their quality products are prized by customers in strategic sectors such as aerospace and energy. The steps we’re announcing today will help ensure they are competitive in the future, with job creation at our Rotherham plant enabling us to mitigate a large percentage of role reductions at other sites,” Liberty Steel Group chief transformation officer Jeffrey Kabel says in a note seen by Kallanish.

“It sets a strong platform for LIBERTY’s GREENSTEEL expansion in which we will increase recycling of steel scrap in low carbon electric arc furnaces to meet growing demand in infrastructure and construction,” he adds.

Further shareholder capital was injected last month into steelmaking across Liberty Steel UK (LSUK)’s High Value Manufacturing, Narrow Strip, Engineering Bar and Merchant Bar operations. This followed last October’s restart of the UK unit’s core Rotherham EAF following the injection of £50 million ($68m) of new funding (see Kallanish passim). Steelmaking at Rotherham and Stocksbridge continued over the first quarter following the restart of operations.

Adam Smith Germany