Now, Lakshmi Mittal wants to start India operations

Now, Lakshmi Mittal wants to start India operations

By SiliconIndia   |   Monday, 01 November 2004, 08:00 Hrs
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LONDON: Head of the world's largest steel company Lakshmi Mittal is keen to have his firm's presence in India and China as his ultimate objective is to supply to global customers.

"If you look at us, we are in 14 countries, in four continents, and this is the only truly global steel company. But this is not enough," the NRI business tycoon, head of the newly-created Mittal Steel Corporation, said in an interview published in 'The Sunday Telegraph' today.

"We need to do more, we need to have a presence in some other markets like China and India. The ultimate objective is to be the global supplier to some of our global customers. We are not there yet," he said in the interview given in New York.

Mittal, who last week emerged as Britain's richest resident with a fortune of 12 billion pounds, said the steel industry was facing a period of tremendous upheaval that would see the demise of local companies and rise of global giants.

He said his vision was of an industry that puts its chequered history of mammoth losses and ailing businesses behind it and foresees the emergence of five or six world class groups, each producing 100 million tonnes of steel a year.

"There is a new breed of CEOs in the steel industry who don't just not want to lose money as they've done in the past, they also want to make money," Mittal, who merged his company with America's International Steel Group to form the world's largest steel company, said.

The landscape of the whole industry has changed. Those new tough managers are determined to modernise and rid the industry of its chronic overcapacity", Mittal said. "The industry has gone through a very bad cycle so people have realised that unless we consolidate our business we will always have a sustainability issue."

Mittal has been busy building an empire that now spans 14 countries from Canada to Kazakhstan and the Caribbean.

This year, the company is expected to produce around 60 million tonnes of steel, 10 million more than its nearest rival Arcelor, the Luxembourg-based company, revenues of 31.5 billion dollars and an expected market capitalisation of 21 billion dollars.

Mittal Steel Corporation, the new company, was created from the merger of Ispat, a New York and Amsterdam-listed company 77 per cent controlled by Mittal, and LNM Holdings, his private business, with International Steel Group.

ISG has been built up by Wilbur Ross, the billionaire financier.

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