LONDON, June 7 Finnish stainless steel maker
Outokumpu said on Friday bids received so far for its
Italian plant, Acciai Speciali Terni, "have not been
Outokumpu has to sell Terni, one of Europe's biggest and
most modern steel plants, as a condition for the EU competition
authorities approving its acquisition of Inoxum, rival
ThyssenKrupp's stainless steel arm.
Last month sources with knowledge of the matter said its
deadline for the sale was extended to the end of June, after
Outokumpu told the EU Commission it was not happy with either
the number of bids on the table or the price offered.
"Outokumpu continues to work intensively with all parties to
provide as quick a solution as is possible," it said on Friday.
The Terni site was valued at as much as $1 billion a year
ago, but on Outokumpu's books it now has a value of 560 million
euros ($739 million), and could sell for less.
Outokumpu, keen to ensure that a lengthy sale process does
not affect Terni's competitiveness, said the Italian business
was pressing ahead with a 2013 investment programme, adding it
would continue to fully finance the plant.
"Despite the very difficult market conditions, (Terni's)
financial performance improved in the last reported quarter
(January-March 2013)," Outokumpu said.
"This is an encouraging development considering the
challenging economic environment in Europe, and especially in
(Reporting by Clara Ferreira-Marques; Editing by Greg Mahlich)