The Coal Trader

Cliffs Raises Bid for US Steel

CNBC reported, citing unnamed sources familiar with the deal, that U.S. Steel has now received multiple bids of more than $40 per share, sending the company’s shares up from a little more than $36 per share before the report. 

Neither U.S. Steel nor Cleveland-Cliffs immediately responded to a request for more information, but companies often don’t comment on matters dealing with potential acquisitions. 

The increased bids raise the price a buyer might pay for U.S. Steel from about $7.3 billion when Cliffs made its initial bid for the company, to about $9 billion based on a buyout price of $40 per share. 

Cliffs has been particularly aggressive in its pursuit of U.S. Steel, and Cliffs CEO Lourenco Goncalves has said on several occasions that he does not intend to be denied the acquisition and will not walk away.

Goncalves, who took over Cliffs when it was primarily a mining company, has already acquired steelmakers ArcelorMittal and AK Steel and has increased the company’s revenues from around $2 billion to more than $20 billion per year. The proposed U.S. Steel transaction has had plenty of supporters and detractors. 

Unions, which have largely enjoyed good relationships with Cliffs under Goncalves, have said they support his effort and want to see Cliffs prevail.

Others, including automakers, have expressed concern over the deal due to the amount of the market Cliffs would control – which analysts say is about half of the market for some important forms of steel.