Tata, CSN brace for chilling climax of Corus battle

By agencies   |   Monday, 29 January 2007, 06:00 Hrs
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London/New Delhi: The Battle Royale for Corus is set for a grand finale beginning tomorrow when the Anglo-Dutch steel maker comes under the hammer and whoever between Tata and CSN bids the highest would walk away with the deal.

Industry watchers across India, Britain and Brazil are anxiously awaiting the outcome of the deal, as eagerly as the three companies involved.
While CSN has gone on record about how confident it is on winning the battle, the Tatas have remained tight-lipped on the whole exercise.

"We remain determined to acquire Corus and we enter the process with confidence," a CSN spokesperson told PTI after the announcement of auction process.
The auction process that could take the final bid to anything above 11 billion dollars has not only raised the issue of whether it would be a fair value for Corus, it has also raised concerns about job cuts the winner could impose on Corus workforce.

Both the bidders have previously termed their respective offers -- 500 pence a share by Tata and 515 pence bid by CSN -- as fair valuation for Corus, while promising no job cuts after the deal.

However, analysts believe a winner would have to eventually go for job cuts from Corus' over 24,000 strong workforce to achieve their estimated cost synergies.
British daily The Independent quoted analysts as saying that a successful bid by Tata Steel was likely to result in job losses sooner than under CSN's ownership.

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