Worthington Announces Steel Processing Joint Venture in China
Worthington will join Nisshin Steel Co., Ltd. and Marubeni-Itochu Steel Inc. (MISI) in the venture which will be called Zhejiang Nisshin Worthington Precision Specialty Steel Co., Ltd. Worthington will own a 10% stake in the joint venture with the option to increase ownership and Japanese partners Nisshin and MISI will own 55% and 35% respectively. The formal agreement is expected to be signed by the end of the month.
“This joint venture allows us to leverage our expertise in cold rolled strip steel in China, the largest automotive production market in the world,” said Steel Processing president Geoff Gilmore. “We are pleased to have another opportunity to partner with MISI and further our relationship with Nisshin, Asia’s leading producer of cold rolled strip.”
The venture plans to build a facility with an annual capacity of approximately 130,000 tons. The facility will be located in Pinghu City, Zhejiang, China, approximately 45 miles outside of Shanghai. Construction is expected to begin immediately following government approval with production expected to begin in the fourth quarter of 2015.
Nisshin Steel Co., Ltd., formed in 1959, is a Japanese integrated steelmaker specializing in light-gauge sheet products. The company has a long history and superior technical expertise in the field of surface-treated products. Nisshin is a leading manufacturer of coated steel, cold rolled special steel strip and cold rolled stainless steel with locations in Asia and North America.
Marubeni-Itochu Steel Inc., formed in 2001 as a 50/50 joint venture between Japanese general trading companies ITOCHU Corporation and Marubeni Corporation, is a leading iron and steel company set up as a general producer geared to iron and steel distribution in the modern era. It integrates information, distribution, finance and human resources using a global network that combines the capabilities of its two parent companies. MISI, and its subsidiaries, have more than 100 offices both within and outside Japan. MISI currently partners with Worthington Industries in the Clarkwestern Dietrich Building Systems joint venture.
Worthington Industries is a leading diversified metals manufacturing company with 2013 fiscal year sales of US$2.6 billion. The Columbus, Ohio, based company is North America’s premier value-added steel processor and a leader in manufactured metal products, such as propane, oxygen, refrigerant and industrial cylinders, hand torches, camping cylinders, scuba tanks, compressed natural gas storage cylinders, helium balloon kits and exploration, recovery and production tanks for global energy markets; custom-engineered open and enclosed cabs and operator stations for heavy mobile equipment; laser welded blanks; steel pallets and racks; and through joint ventures, suspension grid systems for concealed and lay-in panel ceilings, current and past model automotive service stampings and light gauge steel framing for commercial and residential construction. Worthington employs approximately 10,000 people and operates 82 facilities in 11 countries.