INDIAN-ORIGIN British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta owned Liberty Steel has committed around £60 million as part of the UK’s ‘Build Back Better’ plan at its production hub in England.
The plan aims at a sustainable recovery from the coronavirus pandemic crisis in the country.
The investment plans to remove production bottlenecks at its electric arc furnace (N-Furnace) and small bloom caster at its South Yorkshire Green Steel production hub at Rotherham, said Liberty, part of the GFG Alliance group.
It will launch a public tender to upgrade its N-Furnace for increased scrap steel melting, make upgrades to Thrybergh Bar Mill and install a new Rod Block to produce wire rod and de-bar in coil.
“Liberty’s programme of further investment in South Yorkshire is proof that the UK steel industry can deliver the low carbon infrastructure Britain needs to build back better,” said Gupta, executive chairman of GFG Alliance.
“With government backing for UK steel in procurement for major construction projects, a resurgent steel sector can deliver a new generation of industrial skills and jobs,” he said.
The programme is pegged to boost supply of sustainably-produced reinforcing bar ‘GreBar’ for schools, hospitals, houses, energy facilities and transport links as part of the government’s £100 billion infrastructure spending plan.
According to the company, the production increase will reduce the UK’s reliance on imported steel, helping to strengthen the supply chain and secure high-value jobs.
The new initiatives follow the first shipments of GreBar from Thrybergh targeted at UK infrastructure projects such as HS2, or the new high-speed rail network. Liberty says it aims to partner with a rebar fabrication company onsite for GreBar production.
“We’ve already taken big strides by doubling production at Rotherham to 500,000 mt since we acquired the business, including the launch of sustainably-produced new components such as GreBar perfect for infrastructure projects like HS2,” said Jon Ferriman, managing director of Liberty Steel UK.
“The investments will now double production yet again and put us right on course to hit our target to produce one million tonnes a year at Rotherham.”
Recently, Liberty Steel and Acenta Steel, part of the Aartee Group, have agreed a deal to combine their engineering bar divisions to deliver a stronger, more efficient high precision steel business supplying industrial customers.
Liberty Steel is a collection of global businesses and investments owned by Sanjeev Gupta and his family.
It is structured into three core industrial pillars of Liberty Steel Group, Alvance Aluminium Group and SIMEC Energy Group, employing 35,000 people across 10 countries.