The battle for steel giant Arcelor is reaching its climax, with two firms vying to win the hand of the Luxembourg-based firm. Eleventh-hour talks are taking place on the eve of Arcelor’s key board meeting on Sunday when it will weigh up a takeover bid from Britain’s richest man, Lakshmi Mittal.
There is mounting speculation that he is sweetening his 23.2 billion euro offer to win support from Arcelor’s board. Mittal is the world’s largest steel company. Should it take over Arcelor, a firm capable of producing over 100 million tonnes of steel a day would be created. But that is far from certain because a Russian suitor is also on the scene. Alexei Mordashov’s Severstal has its sights set on the prized target too. He seemed to be on course with a merger looking all but certain. Arcelor was keen to defend itself against what was Mittal Steel’s hostile takeover bid. However Severstal could yet be thwarted with the prospect of a happy Arcelor- Mittal marriage now apparently on the cards.