Essar Steel bid war hots up with re-entry of ArcelorMittal, Numetal

Numetal, Vedanta and ArcelorMittal, along with Nippon Steel and Sumitomo Corporation have offered to acquire Essar Steel after the consortium of lenders invited fresh bids for the troubled steel major.

A grouping led by global steel giant ArcelorMittal, mining major Vedanta and a consortium of NuMetal and JSW with backing from Russia’s VTB Capital on Monday put in bids to takeover bankrupt Essar Steel in the second round of bidding.
Bankers now expect the bid war for the debt-laden Ruia-promoted Essar Steel to hot up with the entry of contenders with deeper pockets. The creditor banks, however, said only companies that had put in expression of interest (EoI) in the first round will be allowed to bid.
Vedanta, ArcleorMittal and Numetal along with JSW on Monday submitted resolution plans for the debt-laden Essar Steel in the second round of bidding, sources close to the development said.
JSW has joined hands with the Mauritius-based investment vehicle Numetal for placing its bid.
The insolvency resolution professional overseeing the auction had earlier advised creditor banks to reject bids by ArcelorMittal and Nemetal as promoters of both companies were linked to defaulter companies.
Only two players, ArcelorMittal and Numetal, had submitted bids for Essar Steel on 12 February in the first round. However, both bids were rejected after the SBI-led consortium of creditors found them ineligible under the IBC laws.
Numetal, an SPV floated by Russian lender VTB Bank and Rewant Ruia had jointly placed the offer.
Founded by Shashi and Ravi Ruia, Essar Steel was referred to the National Company Law Tribunal last year after accumulating nearly Rs50,000 crore in debt.
Essar Steel is an integrated flat steel producer. Its main production facility is in Gujarat. It has a nameplate crude steel capacity of 9.6 million tonnes per annum, although the current maximum achievable crude steel production level is 6.1 million tonnes per annum, due to a bottleneck in the steelmaking and casting process.
Essar Steel was among the initial 12 companies identified by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for insolvency proceedings.