Tata Steel and thyssenkrupp signed a memorandum of understanding to combine their European steel activities in a 50/50 joint venture. The goal is to create a leading European flat-steel business. The new entity is set to have a workforce of about 48,000 currently at 34 locations, and shipments are anticipated to be about 21 million tons a year. To be named thyssenkrupp Tata Steel, the planned joint venture will be managed through a holding company based in the Netherlands.

thyssenkrupp intends to contribute its Steel Europe business to the planned joint venture. There are also plans for the joint venture to include thyssenkrupp Mill Services & Systems GmbH, a steel-mill services provider that is part of the Materials Services business. Tata would add all of its flat-steel activities in Europe. The effective start-up of the joint venture could take place in late 2018.

The joint-venture partners plan to focus on leveraging synergies and will include integrating sales, administration, research and development, joint optimization of procurement, logistics and service centers as well as improved capacity utilization in downstream processing.