March 9, 2020 5.02 pm This story is over 49 months old

British Steel complete deal with Chinese buyer, 400 jobs lost

3,200 jobs saved, 400 lost

British Steel has sold parts of the business and assets to the Chinese steelmaker Jingye, saving around 3,200 jobs, but 400 employees are now without work.

It is understood that Jingye Group offered £50 million to buy the company, while British Steel is in liquidation and continues to trade and supply customers.

The sale to Jingye includes the steelworks at Scunthorpe, UK mills in Teeside and Skinningrove, shares of FN Steel BV, and the TSP Engineering business based in Cumbria.

The deal secured around 3,200 jobs, but around 400 employees did not receive offers of employment. They are being supported by the Job Centre Plus and the National Career Service to find new employment.

Discussions are also continuing to resolve the regulatory approvals required to sell British Steel Limited’s French subsidiary to Jingye, which is based in Hayange.

The Official Receiver was originally appointed as liquidator for British Steel in May 2019.

The Official Receiver said: “The sale of British Steel is the culmination of nine months of work to transition this business to a new owner committed to its future.

“I am grateful to the British Steel workforce for their professionalism during difficult times as the business continued to trade and to its customers who have continued to show their confidence in the products the company produces. This show of commitment was an essential element in concluding the sale.

“My team and the Special Managers at EY are very pleased to have completed the sale. This is the best outcome in the liquidation and also ensures continued high-quality raw steel production in Scunthorpe.”

Special Manager, Sam Woodward at EY, added: “Although British Steel has been sold, securing approximately 3,200 jobs, around 400 employees have not received offers of employment in the new company.

“We recognise this will be a challenging time for those affected and support and advice has already been, and will continue to be, provided.”

The sale has no impact on the proposed sale of the remaining British Steel group. Exclusive talks with the preferred buyer, Ataer Holdings A.S., are continuing.