ISG to Become Largest Steel Producer in North America

Following the board of directors meeting, it was announced that Bethlehem Steel would sell substantially all of its assets to International Steel Group. The deal is expected to be finalised some time in the second quarter of 2003.

Bethlehem Steel which is still covered by Chapter 11 bankruptcy is pleased that the deal will enable its steel operations to continue, albeit under new ownership. Employees, operations and clients will also experience a seamless transition as International Steel Group becomes the largest steel producer in North America through the acquisition.

However, Bethlehem Steel regret that due to the sale they will no longer be able to pay healthcare and insurance benefits for retirees. These benefits would have been lost whether the company was sold or managed to re-organise under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, although they have continued to pay the benefits since entering into Chapter 11 status. It is not uncommon for companies to shed this responsibility as soon as Chapter 11 bankruptcy is declared.

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