Liberty-thyssenkrupp talks nearing due diligence – sources

The approach of Liberty Steel for thyssenkrupp’s steel division could take a step forward as soon as December. According to press reports, the two groups might agree to start a due diligence process – meaning Liberty will get exclusive insight into thyssenkrupp Steel’s records – next week. Bloomberg as well as Reuters are citing insider sources claiming that the German conglomerate will open its books to Liberty.

Last month, Liberty came forth with an official non-binding takeover offer over, which was confirmed by thyssenkrupp. Both sides have since entered talks, on which no details have been revealed so far. Upon request by Kallanish, thyssenkrupp’s press department declined to give a comment; Liberty’s parent group GFG Alliance did not reply to inquiries before press time.

Liberty’s bid for a takeover rather than a joint venture partnership does not conflict with thyssenkrupp’s wider plans, which encompass a stand-alone development for Steel, as well as considering partnerships and a spin-off. At thyssenkrupp’s annual press conference last week, chief executive Martina Merz said that a decision should come in the spring.