Tata, JSW Steel bid for struggling Indian steel mills
Singapore, 12 February (Argus) — Major Indian private-sector steel producers Tata Steel and JSW Steel are looking to buy fellow Indian mills that are going through the bankruptcy process.
JSW Steel is bidding for Monnet Ispat & Energy and is considering bids for Bhushan Steel and Bhushan Steel & Power. Tata Steel said it is bidding for some of these mills, but would not confirm names.
Tata Steel management is not denying reports it may have bid for four mills. "We have expressed our interest and given bids," chief financial officer Koushik Chatterjee said. There has not been any formal announcement on winning bidders and Tata has not been informed of the outcome of bids, he said on 9 February.
Five Indian steel mills, including Essar Steel and Electrosteel Steels, were taken to the country's new bankruptcy court by lenders last year. The five companies have been put up for sale as part of the bankruptcy process, attracting interest from Indian and overseas steel companies as well as financial institutions. Essar Steel is the biggest of the five mills, with 10mn t/yr of crude steel capacity at its west Indian plant.
JSW Steel has kept open the option of buying stressed steel mills either on its own or with partners to jointly fund acquisitions. The company expects winning bidders to be announced in April.