New Delhi: Liberty Steel Group has begun its operations in India with production starting at Adhunik Metaliks and Zion Steel. Liberty Steel Group had acquired the Adhunik unit situated close to Rourkela earlier this year. UK-based Liberty Steel Group is part of diversified GFG Alliance, owned by Indian-origin metals tycoon Sanjeev Gupta.
In February, GFG Alliance announced its foray into the Indian steel industry with the acquisition of Adhunik Metaliks and its arm Zion Steel for about Rs 425 crore. Production was at halt at both units.
In a statement on Thursday, Liberty Steel said ‘it has (from) this week restarted the first phase of production at Adhunik and Zion Steel. The restart has been achieved in just six months following intensive work to prepare the site for their return to steelmaking operations after the previous owner fell into administration’.
Adhunik has an integrated steel plant at Chadrihariharpur near Rourkela. The plant has both blast furnace and Electric Arc Furnace steel making capability with 0.5 million tonne per annum (MTPA) capacity, and a 34 MW captive power plant.
Adhunik along with Zion’s steel rolling facility has a combined capacity of 400,000 tonne per annum. The sites produce products for automotive, energy, engineering and oil and gas sectors.
Liberty said it provided full salaries to employees once they were fully deployed on the site. Fifty per cent salaries were given to those waiting to start work as part of the gradual restart.
According to the statement, an agreement to this effect was signed between the management, multiple unions and government authority.
“It’s a proud moment for me. Adhunik is on its way to becoming fully operational. We have shown commitment to industrial communities by retaining and paying local workers as we start up operations and bring Adhunik and Zion works back to life. We aim to integrate the business into Liberty Steel Group in near future,” GFG Alliance Executive Chairman, Sanjeev Gupta, said in the statement.
London-based GFG Alliance is a global group of energy, mining, metals, engineering and financial services businesses.
Adhunik MD Uday Gupta said: “It has been a phenomenal journey to get to this stage but it has not been without challenges, especially as we continue to manage the COVID-19 pandemic. The challenges in starting the plant and machinery were overcome through the indomitable spirit of the Adhunik team. With this progressive restart, we can now look forward to working in partnership with all stakeholders to take the operations to the next level.”