Stainless steel merger gains EC approval

The European Commission has approved Finnish stainless steel producer Outokumpu’s proposed acquisition of rival Inoxum.

The EC ruled that the deal could go ahead, subject to the divestiture of the former ThyssenKrupp subsidiary’s stainless steel mill in Terni, Italy and certain European service centres.

Outokumpu says that divestiture process has already begun and expects to find “many potential buyers” for the unit.

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The merger with Inoxum makes Outokumpu the new global leader in stainless steel and high performance alloys, according to Mika Seitovirta, CEO of Outokumpu.

“Now Outokumpu can achieve significantly improved capacity utilisation rates, we will have an expanded presence in growth markets outside Europe and the widest product offering to serve our customers even better,” he said. “The transaction enables us to achieve annual synergy savings of approximately €200m (£160mm) and efficiencies that neither company could have achieved alone.”

Outokumpu hopes to complete the transaction by the end of the year.

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