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Steel firm’s supply chain reassured after acquisition

Major steel manufacturer Caparo Industries Group had its remaining businesses and assets bought after being put in administration in October.

Administrator Price Waterhouse Cooper (PwC) announced the sale of 10 businesses to the Gupta family, whose interests include SIMEC mining and commodity business and the Liberty House metals group.

It follows series of transactions between the Gupta family and PwC administrators two weeks ago.

Unions have welcomed the deals, which are set to secure over 1,100 jobs across nine locations in the West Midlands and North East.

PwC’s lead administrator for Caparo, Matthew Hammond, said: “This has been a complex and challenging assignment given the size and number of the business operations. Only by working alongside the talented Caparo people have we been able to achieve this result.

“The supply chain can also now look forward to 2016 with a good deal more certainty with these businesses in the hands of an experienced investor across these sectors. We thank the customers and suppliers who have supported the businesses over the last eight weeks.”

Unions have been cheered by the news.

Unite national officer Harish Patel said: “Over the coming days and weeks we will be seeking assurances on investment and training which is crucial to sustaining skilled well-paid jobs in our manufacturing sector.

”We will also be working closely with the new owners to ensure jobs are secured in the UK for the long term.

GMB regional officer Russell Farrington hoped the deal would put workers’ minds at rest, but that action needed to be taken to stop cheap metal imports being dumped on the market.

Administrators from PwC were appointed to 16 out of Caparo’s 20 units in October following other major UK steel firms’ closures.

SSI liquidated its Redcar plant and put 2,100 people out of work also in October while Tata Steel’s Long Products Europe division confirmed an end to production of steel plate and the loss of 1,200 jobs, including 900 at Scunthorpe and 270 in Dalzell and Clydebridge in Scotland.

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