Essar Global Ltd., India’s fourth-largest steelmaker, has agreed to buy Canada’s Algoma Steel Inc. for $1.63 billion to set up a base for North American operations. The purchase ends Algoma’s two-year search for a buyer and helps continue an overseas expansion by Essar. According to Algoma, Essar intends to invest in facilities in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, where Algoma is based. The deal is expected to close in June.

Algoma Steel is an integrated steel producer with steel shipments of 2.4 million tons in 2006. Revenues are derived primarily from the manufacture and sale of rolled steel products. Essar Global is an international conglomerate operating in steel, oil and gas, power, communications, shipping and logistics, and construction. It has built a portfolio of assets with expected revenues of $10 billion by March 2008.