ThyssenKrupp mulls major revamp
Berlin, May 14, 2011
ThyssenKrupp, Germany's biggest steelmaker, is exploring options including strategic tie-ups or a market listing for its stainless steel arm under a radical revamp that will reshape the conglomerate.
ThyssenKrupp said last week it planned to hive off its stainless steel unit, Europe's largest producer, as part of a 10 billion euro ($14 billion) divestment plan that will also refocus its auto parts arm, under pressure from Asian rivals.
Presenting details of the overhaul yesterday after forecast-beating results, the group said the stainless steel industry was suffering from overcapacity and was ripe for deals.
'The stainless steel market faces a consolidation process for which our decision provides further options. With separation from ThyssenKrupp, Europe's market and quality leader in the stainless steel business will become independent,' chief executive Heinrich Hiesinger said.
'We are giving stainless steel the opportunity to develop its competitive position with greater flexibility - also with regard to potential strategic partnerships,' he added.
ThyssenKrupp said it will consider all options for the stainless arm, including joint ventures and an outright sale. It does not plan to keep a majority stake but would retain a 'considerable' minority shareholding in the event of a market listing, widely seen as the most likely outcome.
ThyssenKrupp posted a 79 per cent rise in quarterly profits that showcased robust demand for cars and machinery.