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NASDAQ Listed Steel Dynamics Now Owns Bay City OmniSource, 42 Scrap Yards

Nation's 5th Largest Steel Firm Moves to Tri-City Area in $1.1 Billion Deal

January 23, 2008       Leave a Comment
By: Dave Rogers

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Scrapyard operations of OmniSource in Bay City, once home to Defoe Shipbuilding Co.
 
Keith Busse, one of the nation's leading entrepreneurs, heads firm that has acquired OmniSource-Bay City.

Recent acquisition of a Bay City industry by a major steelmaker connects the local area with a global enterprise that is one of the world's fastest growing industries headed by a widely-recognized entrepreneur.

Steel Dynamics, Inc., (SDI) (NASDAQ-GS:STLD) of Ft. Wayne, Indiana, is expected to retain its Bay City yard under the OmniSource name and continue operations here.

SDI is the nation's fifth largest producer of carbon steel in the U.S., producing steel from recycled steel scrap in five electric-arc furnace mini-mills.

SDI is the only producer of structural steel in the Midwest. Founded in 1993, Steel Dynamics has quickly grown to more than $3 billion in revenues and is one of the most profitable steel companies in the world.

The company shipped 4.7 million tons in 2006 on revenues of $3.2 billion. Products include flat rolled steel, wide-flange beams, rails, SBQ bars, merchant bars and specialty shapes.

The company also operates five plants that produce fabricated steel building products and employs approximately 3,900 persons.

SDI stock closed Wednesday at 46.04, down $1.63 on volume of 4,308,652 shares. There are 96,541,000 shares outstanding and the 12 month high was $61.34 and the low $33.37.


Company sources said the huge steel firm completed a $1.1 billion deal for Bay City and 42 other scrap facilities in the U.S. and Canada late last year and has assumed full control.

SDI's existing scrap operations in Virginia, Tennessee and Indiana are being transferred to OmniSource, said Keith Busse, chairman and CEO. The acquisition is expected to create synergies of about $15 million a year.

Kobe Steel, Ltd., of Japan, recently announced an agreement with Steel Dynamics, Inc. (SDI) for Kobe Steel and SDI to construct an iron-making plant using Kobe Steel's ITmk3® Process at Hoyt Lakes, Minnesota. Total investment is projected to reach $235 million (about 26 billion yen). Plans call for the new facility, which will have an annual production capacity of 500,000 metric tons per year, to start up in mid-2009.

SDI paid approximately $1 billion for OmniSource, including $425 million in cash, 9.7 million shares of SDI common stock valued at $451 million, and the assumption of about $220 million in debt which was repaid on closing.

The firm recently announced mining and minerals projects in Minnesota makes it the only domestic steelmaker with a significant presence in both the virgin iron ore and ferrous recycling markets, said Mr. Busse.

OmniSource, also headquartered in Ft. Wayne, has historically been one of the largest suppliers of SDI.

"This acquisition opens the door for further profitable growth in a sector of increasing relevance on a global scale," said Mr. Busse.

Mr. Busse headed up the team that established SDI in 1993. He and colleagues Mark Millett and Dick Teets founded Steel Dynamics, the first new U.S. steel producer in a century to be formed without corporate backing or pre-existing financial credentials. Based on their reputation and a strong business plan, they succeeded in raising $370 million in capital to build SDI's flat-roll minimill at Butler, Indiana. Constructed in a record 14 months, the greenfield mill began production of hot-rolled steel early in 1996 and became profitable in its sixth month of operation.

Mr. Busse He earned an accounting degree from International Business College, a bachelor's in business finance from the University of Saint Francis, and a master's degree in business administration at Indiana University in 1978. He has received the Wall Street Journal award for academic excellence and a Distinguished Alumnus Award from Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne in 1991. In 2005, the Association for Iron and Steel Technology named Mr. Busse its Steelmaker of the Year. In 1997, BusinessWeek listed him and SDI among the top 10 entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial corporations in the United States. In that same year, he was named winner of the Indiana Ernst & Young Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year award. In May 1999, he was named one of the five "Best Undiscovered CEOs" in a feature article in Individual Investor magazine. He's also been listed in Outstanding Young Men of America and the Who's Who World Registry.

He has established the Keith Busse School of Business and Entrepreneurial Management at St. Francis University, Ft. Wayne, and has received an honorary degree from that institution.

As chairman of the Steel Manufacturers Association in 2005, Mr. Busse testified before the Congressional Steel Caucus about the need for legislation to hold China accountable for "serious adverse effects of currency manipulation." He also advocated tax reform, health care improvements, import monitoring, government subsidized steel capacity growth, retention of Buy American legislation and the need to replace much of America's obsolescent infrastructure.

Prior to founding SDI, Mr. Busse worked for Nucor Corp. for 21 years, rising from division controller to general manager, and then ultimately becoming vice president and general manager of the Nucor?s facility at Crawfordsville, Indiana. At Crawfordsville, he led a team that built and operated the world's first minimill to use thin-slab-casting steelmaking technology.

Danny Rifkin, OmniSource president and CEO, has become executive vice president of SDI's newly organized recycled metals operations. He will continue to lead OmniSource as president and Chief Operating Officer (COO) and has been named to the SDI board of directors.

The OmniSource yard on the Saginaw River in Bay City once was home to H. Hirschfield Sons and now encompasses the former yard of the Defoe Shipbuilding Co., that closed in 1977 after more than 70 years of operation.

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Dave Rogers

Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
respected journalist/writer in and around Bay City.
(Contact Dave Via Email at carraroe@aol.com)

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