Ian Melin-Jones

Ian Melin-Jones

PJSC Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works’ (MMK) new hi-tech sinter plant, the second stage of which is scheduled for commissioning in the near future, is expected to add an additional c. USD 40 mln to the Company’s EBITDA per year. In addition to the increased productivity, the unit should significantly decrease MMK’s environmental impact. The news was shared with investors at the international Global Metals, Mining & Steel conference in Barcelona, organised by Bank of America Merrill Lynch. MMK’s delegation was led by CEO Pavel Shilyaev.

2016 04 07 064954Sinter plant No 5 has a capacity of up to 5.5 mln tonnes of high-quality raw materials per year. Agglomerate with higher iron content allows to increase productivity and decrease coke consumption, thus the cost of producing pig iron using agglomerate from the new unit should decline by USD 8 per tonne. The first stage of the sinter plant was commissioned in April 2019.

The new unit will operate using the best available energy-saving technologies which will significantly improve environmental safety. Emissions of dust into the atmosphere will be reduced by 2.1 thousand tonnes per year and sulphur dioxide emissions will be reduced by 3.5 thousand tonnes per year. In addition, the discharge of suspended solids into the water circulation supply system will be reduced by 600 tonnes per year and emissions of benzopyrene will be reduced by almost a quarter.

Construction of the new sinter plant is part of MMK’s large-scale investment strategy, which includes significant upgrades to the first processing stage. ММК has already started design works for the construction of a new coke battery, upon commissioning of which five existing batteries will be gradually decommissioned. MMK also plans to construct a new blast furnace which will replace three existing ones. While implementing its investment programme, MMK aims to further decrease production costs and improve the quality of its products, while focusing on environmental protection.

About MMK 
MMK is one of the world's largest steel producers and a leading Russian metals company. The company's operations in Russia include a large steel-producing unit encompassing the entire production chain, from the preparation of iron ore to downstream processing of rolled steel. MMK turns out a broad range of steel products with a predominant share of high-value-added products. In 2018, the company produced 12.7 mln tonnes of crude steel and 11.7 mln tonnes of commercial steel products. MMK Group had sales in 2018 of USD 8,214 mln and EBITDA of USD 2,418 mln.

Megasteel Ltd, the UK's largest independent prestressing steel stockholder and distributor, has bought steel product manufacturer Sweetnam & Bradley with the help of Thrings.

Established in 1991 in Malmesbury and originally specialising in steel for the reinforcement of concrete, Megasteel has grown into a major global importer and distributor of steel construction products.

Sweetnam & Bradley, also based in the Wiltshire town, produces, assembles and finishes sheet metal. The acquisition marks a step into production for Megasteel, who will move its headquarters into the larger Sweetnam & Bradley premises.

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The newly acquired business will hold on to its brand and employees, with Nigel Johnson (Megasteel) and Christian Olejnik (Sweetnam & Bradley) acting as managing director and operations director respectively. Both major employers in Malmesbury, the acquisition will serve to secure and grow jobs in the area, which is also home to the Dyson facilities.

John Richardson, corporate partner at commercial law firm Thrings, lead the deal from a legal perspective for Nigel Roberts, owner and managing director of Megasteel. John was assisted by Lizzie King in the corporate team, with partner Ben Tarrant advising on the commercial premises aspects of the acquisition and associate solicitor Natalie Ward on employee related matters.

South West accounting firm, MHA  Monahans, provided corporate financial advice to Megasteel.

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Nigel Roberts said: “Sweetnam & Bradley is a well established local business with a far reach, much like ours. Adding production to our storage and distribution operations was the natural next step for Megasteel and I look forward to growing the business together with Nigel and Christian.

“Thank you to the teams at Thrings and MHA Monahans, who expertly guided me through the substantial process of buying a company. Their commercial awareness, professionalism and determination to get things right for the business and its staff acted as a reassuring force throughout.”

John Richardson said: “With the firm having worked with Nigel for over a decade, Thrings was pleased to once again support both him and Megasteel on their upwards trajectory. We’re pleased to see continuity secured for staff and customers, but also the local population, which depends on strong businesses staying and growing locally. We wish Nigel and the, now larger, business the best of luck with the next bit – getting the most out of the corporate matrimony.”

Thrings is a Top 100 law firm with offices in Bristol, Bath Swindon, Romsey and London.

Thrings' partner-led teams of specialist lawyers provide legal and strategic advice to entrepreneurs, start-ups, SMEs, corporates and multinationals in a range of industry sectors. This includes agriculture and the rural economy, banking and financial services, retail, and technology.

The firm has also built up strong Private Client, Succession and Tax teams with a commercial background, meaning the complex needs of business clients as well as individuals are well provided for.

The way Thrings’ solicitors look after their clients is as important as the legal work they do, becoming long-term trusted advisers with the commercial acumen to enable their clients to prosper and grow.

Thrings is recognised as a top-tier law firm by independent legal directories Chambers and Partners and Legal 500. In recent years, Thrings has won awards from prominent legal and business publications for its legal expertise, transparent pricing models and client-focused approach.

Weld Purging Techniques are now used in most industries especially when welding reactive metals. Whilst the welding torch provides a protective cover to the top of the fusion zone, inert gas coverage is also required at the weld root.

By sampling the gas and testing the oxygen content around the weld, the welder knows when to start welding for safe results.

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The basic-entry level Weld Purge Monitor®, called the PurgEye® Nano, designed and developed by Weld Purging Experts Huntingdon Fusion Techniques HFT®, will show oxygen levels down to 1 ppm (accurate to 10 ppm), which can be used to monitor the oxygen content when welding titanium, zirconium and all other reactive metals. 

Luke Keane, Technical Sales Manager for HFT® said: “Our low cost PurgEye® Nano is a no frills monitor, perfect for those with restricted budgets. The Monitor is small, lightweight and easy to use.”

The PurgEye® Nano has been developed for weld purging where data logging, alarms and machine control are not necessarily required. The monitor has been developed with a unique long life sensor that has a warm up time under 60 seconds.

With leak-tight connectors for weld purge hoses, the PurgEye® Nano can be used with optional accessory hand pump and gas sampling probe. It can be used to check purge gas quality from the main source and at the exhaust end of a purging system, as well as to find air leaks in purging hose connections anywhere in a system. The monitor can also be used to check the quality of the gas source to ensure that no contamination is present.

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HFT® has a Family Range of PurgEye® Weld Purge Monitors® for every application. The range includes hand held, battery operated monitors and mains powered monitors, which can read oxygen levels from atmospheric level of 20.94%, right down to 1 ppm.

Ron Sewell, Chairman for HFT® said: “All of Huntingdon Fusion Techniques HFT®’s Weld Purge Monitors® and Inflatable Tube, Pipe and Pipeline Weld Purging Systems as well as our inflatable welding enclosures are manufactured in the UK. We do not sacrifice on quality. We guarantee to help welders achieve zero colour welds, time and time again.”

As the major international authority on weld purging, Huntingdon Fusion Techniques HFT® provide a very comprehensive technical support system and in addition, they have a Worldwide Exclusive Distributor network which can be found at www.huntingdonfusion.com 

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