German industrial group ThyssenKrupp is in negotiations with Czech billionaire Daniel Kretinsky to divest a 50% stake in its steel division to the latter, reported Reuters, citing two people privy to the development.
Kretinsky owns energy company Energeticky a Prumyslovy Holding (EPH).
Earlier this year, Thyssenkrupp restarted efforts to offload its steel business after abandoning the plan due to futile attempts to list, divest or find a potential merger partner.
At that time, Reuters reported that Thyssenkrupp was working with Goldman Sachs to explore options.
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The talks over the potential stake sale in Thyssenkrupp’s steel business was initially reported by German newspaper Handelsblatt, citing multiple unnamed sources.
According to the report, the parties could sign a deal by the end of 2023.
Earlier this year, Reuters reported that Thyssenkrupp’s steel business attracted interest from other parties including Brazil’s CSN, Emirates Steel Arkan and financial investor CVC.
In July 2023, Thyssenkrupp Steel Europe secured €2bn ($2.12bn) in state subsidies from Germany to decarbonise steel production.
The direct grant will be used by the company to support the construction and installation of a direct reduction plant and two melting units in Duisburg, Germany.
Currently, Thyssenkrupp Steel Europe holds pension liabilities of €2.7bn.
Thyssenkrupp Steel supplies high-grade flat steel and aims to make steel production carbon-neutral by 2045.
By 2030, the company aims to reduce emissions from its own production and processes and from the energy purchase by more than 30% versus the 2018 base year.