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voestalpine brings Rohstoffhandel into Joint Venture with German Scholz AG

1 November 2006 | 

voestalpine AG, listed on the Vienna Stock Exchange, is continuing its focus on strategic key business areas by bringing voestalpine Rohstoffhandel GmbH, which operates in the scrap recycling and scrap trading sectors, into a newly established joint venture. At the same time, however, by significantly extending its procurement base it is also securing a long-term basic supply of scrap as an important raw material for steel production at the Linz and Donawitz sites.

The voestalpine Group currently holds a majority share of 83.5% in voestalpine Rohstoffhandel GmbH, which operates five scrap yards in Austria and two in the Czech Republic either directly or via wholly-owned subsidiaries. The remaining 16.5% of shares are held by BÖHLER Edelstahl GmbH, Kapfenberg and Stahl- und Walzwerk Marienhütte Gesellschaft m.b.H., Graz.

Yesterday, Tuesday, voestalpine AG made an agreement with Scholz AG, a steel and metal scrap recycling company with its headquarters in Essingen, Germany, to merge the scrap trading activities of both companies in Austria and also in part in the Czech Republic. Scholz AG will hold 60% and the voestalpine Group 33.4% of the shares in the new joint venture company. The remaining shares will be allocated to voestalpine Rohstoffhandel GmbH’s two previous shareholders, BÖHLER Edelstahl GmbH and Stahl- und Walzwerk Marienhütte Gesellschaft m.b.H.

The agreement is made subject to antitrust approval.

“Association with a Recognised European Partner”

According to Wolfgang Eder, chairman of voestalpine AG’s management board, “By merging its scrap trading businesses, the voestalpine Group is bringing its activities in this sector into a major association with a recognised European partner and ensuring a long-term basic supply of high-quality scrap for its steel producing facilities in Linz and Donawitz.”

In particular, this takes place against the backdrop of a lean and volatile future scrap market.

Furthermore, the transaction is linked to the voestalpine Group’s consistent focus on strategic key business areas.

Information about the Companies

The listed voestalpine Group is a leading group of European processing companies with its own steel base and headquarters in Linz, Austria. The voestalpine Group has over 260 subsidiaries throughout the world and in excess of 24,000 employees at sites in 36 countries. In the last financial year the Group achieved sales of EUR 6.5 billion, 82% of which was earned in export markets outside Austria. The Group’s four divisions – Steel, Railway Systems, Automotive and Profilform – each hold leading positions in their respective markets.

Scholz AG, founded in 1872, has focussed its activities on the collection, recycling and trading of ferrous and non-ferrous scrap. The Scholz Group operates primarily in South and East Germany and the countries of Eastern Europe. Alongside the business areas of ferrous and non-ferrous scrap and the provision of complex waste management services linked to these areas, the Scholz Group is also employed in the storage and direct-to-customer trading of special steel products and associated services. In addition, the Scholz Group covers the forging and forming sectors for the heavy utility vehicle industry. Scholz AG, which is privately owned by the Scholz family, posted sales of EUR 1.5 billion in the last financial year.