Davis Index: Market Intelligence for the Global Metals and Recycled Materials Markets

The Liberty Steel Group (LSG) has purchased French railway track maker, Hayange, formerly owned by British steel, as well as Ascoval steelworks. 


The acquisition follows final approvals given by the French government on Friday, LSG said in a statement. 


Hayange produces steel rails for sizeable infrastructure consumers across France. The company’s Moselle facility produces approximately 300,000mt of rail per year and employs about 430 workers.


The French rail industry is the rail maker’s main business, though sales of the product in Europe and other locations are anticipated to expand with the added support from LSG and its network. At present, LSG consists of a rail plant that provides for the Australian industry through its Whyalla, South Australia steel mill. 


The Ascoval plant, located in Saint-Saulve France has an electric arc furnace (EAF) with a production capability of 600,000mt of steel blooms, billets, and other forged materials per year, through ferrous scrap recycling.


The EAF steel producer, which employs about 270 people, will recycle steel that includes rail scrap, which will then be provided to Hayange, forming an integrated French GREENSTEEL rail company.


LSG has devoted €65mn ($77mn) to begin with for Hayange and Ascoval’s industrial plan and will provide additional investment specifics at a later date. The combined facility will produce a completely integrated value supply chain, which will also be LSG’s first steel company in France that offers a method to lift production of GREENSTEEL material and boost development for other French products.


The LSG GREENSTEEL system is intended to revamp steel making by using added scrap metal in the EAFs, consuming lower carbon, using eco-friendly energy supplies, and utilizing hydrogen instead of coking coal for iron ore reduction via direct reduced iron (DRI) facilities. The new process is also the main feature to support GFG Alliance in its goal to reach carbon neutrality by 2030.


Sanjeev Gupta, executive chairman of GFG Alliance and LSG conveyed the group’s intentions of expanding Ascoval to become the core of GREENSTEEL and lead Hayange into new markets. 


The business was created with the circular economy in mind and Hayange along with Ascoval has the potential to lead Europe in low carbon rail infrastructure, Gupta said.


($1 = €.85)

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