UAE Focus

Nippon Steel takes stake in UAE firm

December 2011

JAPAN'S Nippon Steel Corporation (NSC), one of the biggest steelmakers in the world, has taken a 20-per-cent stake in the UAE’s Al Ghurair Iron & Steel (AGIS), a subsidiary of the Al Ghurair Group.

Located in the Industrial City of Abu Dhabi (ICAD), AGIS is the first steel cold rolling and galvanising complex in the UAE.

NSC signed an agreement for equity investment in AGIS through a share transfer, by which it would secure 20 per cent of voting rights in the company. The value of the deal was not revealed.

Al Ghurair Group, through its investment company SAG Investments & Trading, now holds 80 per cent shares in AGIS.

The agreement was signed by Majid Saif Al Ghurair, managing director of SAG Investments & Trading, and Shinya Higuchi, managing director of NSC, in Dubai last month.

The agreement aims to combine the strengths of NSC and AGIS, by leveraging NSC’s technical strengths and global network and AGIS’ local industry and market expertise to deliver cost-effective high-quality galvanised steel to customers in the region.

"NSC’s technical strengths and resources will be of great benefit particularly during our upcoming expansion programme to double our galvanising capacity," said Abu Bucker Husain, CEO.

"AGIS and NSC share a clear focus on delivering superior quality products to their customers as well as having a strong commitment to employee safety and protection of environment. Additionally, the combination of the companies’ global and local strengths will ensure a consistent supply of high-quality raw material for our operations."

Since launching production in 2009, AGIS has achieved a high level of operation and sales, by taking advantage of its location in the UAE as an international distribution base while expanding its customer base across the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) and West Asia.

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