Swiss Steel Can’t Sell Their French Plant: Bad to Worse

Swiss Steel Can’t Sell Their French Plant: Bad to Worse

Wed, Mar 27th 2024

Swiss Steel’s strategy to stabilise finances by selling French plants faces a setback, sparking a search for new solutions amid ongoing financial woes.

Keystone/URS FLUEELER

The floundering steel manufacturer Swiss Steel has suffered another low blow. The plan to sell several steelworks in France, which was announced in December and which was supposed to have flushed money into the empty coffers, has fallen through for the time being.

The subsidiary Ascometal has broken off sales negotiations, Swiss Steel announced on Wednesday. The negotiations with the Italian Acciaierie Venete, which have been ongoing since December, have been terminated.

Ascometal is now seeking court protection. The French subsidiary has requested court-ordered restructuring proceedings for each Group company, explained Swiss Steel.

The aim is to preserve the liquidity of the Ascometal companies in order to gain time for the search for buyers for each of the sites. Swiss Steel intends to divest three plants of its subsidiary Ascometal in France: In Hagondange (Département Moselle), in Custines (Département Meurthe-et-Moselle) and in Le Marais (Département Loire).

Swiss Steel was in urgent need of fresh money: the Central Swiss steel group posted a huge loss of 294.8 million euros in the 2023 financial year, which dragged down its equity.

The hole is now to be plugged with a capital increase of at least 300 million euros. This is secured by major shareholder Martin Haefner, who holds a good third of Swiss Steel. According to media reports, the other major shareholder Peter Spuhler does not want to participate.

©Keystone/SDA

the swiss times
A production of UltraSwiss AG, 6340 Baar, Switzerland
Copyright © 2024 UltraSwiss AG 2024 All rights reserved