Steel Products Prices North America

Mesabi Metallics Defies Expulsion from Iron Range with New COO Hire

Written by Sandy Williams

Mesabi Metallics isn’t acting like a firm that is about to lose its position on the Iron Range. The company hired a new president and chief operating officer, selecting Larry Sutherland, former manager of U.S. Steel’s Minnesota Ore Operations, to join the executive team.

“I am excited to join Mesabi Metallics’ journey to complete the largest investment program in the history of Minnesota at the former Butler Taconite Mine, where I started my iron ore and steel career about 40 years ago,” said Sutherland.

Mesabi has formally notified the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources that it disputes the legality of mineral lease terminations by the agency. The company said in a statement Sunday evening, “Mesabi Metallics believes that it has met all material conditions necessary for the 2020 (master lease amendment) agreement to be fully effective.” The company said it now has binding and enforceable financing commitments of $850 million to complete the development of the mining and pellet operations in Nashwauk.

“For these reasons, Mesabi Metallics has formally notified the DNR that it disputes the existence of a proper legal basis for issuing any termination notices in respect of the state leases,” the company said in its release. “In the meantime, Mesabi Metallics remains fully committed to the project and is continuing to increase jobs on the site as it develops the mine for the benefit of Nashwauk and northern Minnesota.”

The DNR announced on May 7 that it would begin terminating the mineral leases held by Mesabi Metallics after the company failed to meet its May 1 extension to fulfill its leasing obligations. The announcement resulted in Cleveland-Cliffs and U.S. Steel both expressing interest in taking over the leases.

And so the saga continues…

Latest in Steel Products Prices North America