Cargill, Robinson Steel to Form Joint Venture

Cargill, a leading global trader, processor and distributor of iron and steel, has agreed to enter into a joint venture with Robinson Steel to produce and distribute RPS Sheet and Plate under license. The Cargill and Robinson joint venture will have an initial capacity of 200,000 tons per year of cold reduced cut-to-length hot-rolled steel from a jointly owned 100,000 square foot production facility located in Granite City, Ill.

Cargill will source the hot rolled band and provide all of the sales and marketing to support the venture. Robinson will manage and operate production of the facilities. As a licensed distributor, Cargill will have access to production from Robinson's other Granite City processing line and the East Chicago, Ind. facility. Officials expect to close within the next 45 days. Terms were not disclosed.

"Our strategic relationship with Robinson will allow us to immediately increase our product offerings to meet our customers' growing demands for panel flat sheets and plates with RPS quality, the recognized industry standard," said Mike Taylor, president of Cargill Steel Service Centers. "This venture is perfectly aligned with our growth strategy and expands and extends our market leadership position in the processing of hot rolled steel bands."

"We are proud that Cargill selected RPS to complete its product line," said Paul Labriola, president and CEO of Robinson Steel, "and we are excited to pursue the opportunities that will result from bundling our unique value proposition with Cargill's global iron and steel supply chain and risk management capabilities."

Robinson Steel is headquartered in East Chicago. In addition to cold reduction lines, it operates seven RPS Laser Production and Distribution Centers, providing precision-cut parts to OEM's (Original Equipment Manufacturers) and fabricators. Locations include Pomona, Mo.; Davenport, Iowa; Arlington, Texas; Statesville, N.C.; Opelika, Ala; East Chicago; and Granite City, Ill.

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