International Steel Mills

China's Jingye Group Buys British Steel

Written by Sandy Williams

British Steel is now owned by China’s Jingye Group and ready to begin a “new illustrious chapter” in the history of British steelmaking. The completed sale includes the steelworks at Scunthorpe, UK mills in Teesside and Skinningrove, FN Steel in the Netherlands and TSP Engineering. Jingye is continuing separate negotiations to acquire British Steel’s French operations in Hayange.

“It has not been an easy journey since we first announced our intentions in November,” said Jingye CEO Li Hiuming. “But the longer I have spent in Scunthorpe, the more I have come to believe in the successful future of these steelworks and the employees that have made them famous throughout the world.”

“This is a momentous day for our business, and I’d like to thank everyone for their dedication during a challenging year,” said British Steel CEO Ron Deelen. “I’m confident we’ll seize the incredible opportunity Jingye have given us to build on 150 years of heritage and further cement British Steel’s reputation as a manufacturer of world-class steel.”

Jingye plans to invest £1.2 billion over the next 10 years. Growth initiatives include an electric arc furnace in Teeside, a new power plant in Scunthorpe, a new rebar line and upgrades to equipment.

Most of the 3,000-plus workers will keep their jobs, but 450 positions will be cut, said the new owners.

British Steel was purchased by private equity firm Greybull Capital for £1 from Tata Steel in 2016. Greybull was unable to secure funding for operations and the company was placed into liquidation in May 2018.

Latest in International Steel Mills