Steel Mills

Deal with Koch Metallics Furthers BRS Growth Initiatives

Written by Tim Triplett

Big River Steel (BRS) expects to complete its capacity expansion by the end of this year more than two months ahead of expectations. The mill in Osceola, Ark., is in the process of doubling its annual steel production capacity from 1.65 million to 3.3 million tons.

BRS began operations at its $1.3 billion scrap metal recycling and flat-rolled steel production facility in 2017. It produces a wide-range of flat-rolled steels, including advanced automotive steels and electrical steels. Since operations began, BRS has provided steel to over 225 customers in the automotive, energy, construction and agricultural industries. Based on its early success, BRS began the $700 million expansion project in June 2019.

BRS also announced it will now acquire the metallics for its steelmaking operations under an exclusive agreement with Koch Metallics LLC. This new strategic partnership will allow BRS to leverage Koch’s networks, capabilities and services in support of the mill’s growth initiatives.    

“Koch is a significant investor in Big River Steel, and I look forward to broadening our relationship as we jointly advance in the metallics space,” said Dave Stickler, BRS chief executive officer. “Entering into this agreement will accelerate several initiatives Big River Steel has underway that provide alternatives to the ways metallics and flat-rolled steel have historically been bought and sold.”

Koch is a global supplier of bulk materials with world class capabilities in vessel, barge, rail and truck transportation. These capabilities position BRS for improved earnings by providing scale and efficiency gains, thereby reducing raw material costs, the company said.

Martin Baker, BRS metallics procurement manager, will join the Koch team as metallics procurement and conversion manager. 

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