Sault Ste. Marie's Essar Steel Algoma reviews bids for strapped operation

Essar Steel Algoma in Sault Ste. Marie is beginning a chapter that will ultimately determine whether the company is re-structured or sold.

Steel producer has been under creditor protection since November of 2015

The road to finding an investor or buyer for Essar Steel Algoma in Sault Ste Marie has turned a corner. (Nowosielski/Wikipedia)

Essar Steel Algoma in Sault Ste. Marie is beginning a chapter that will ultimately determine whether the company is re-structured or sold.

The company, which employs 2,700 people, has been under protection from creditors since Nov 2015, in part due to slumping steel prices.

Spokesperson Brenda Stenta said several bids for the operation have been received, although she wouldn't say how many.

Stenta said the next few weeks will be spent reviewing the offers.

"At the close of phase two [in this process], the objective would be to have a successful bidder who will then enter into final negotiations with various stakeholder groups." 

Those stakeholders include the unions representing the workers.

As for how long it will take to pick an offer, Stenta said, "we're working through this process in an expedited and constructive manner so [are] certainly cognizant of all those stakeholder concerns."

Stenta said the hope is to have the entire process wrapped up by Sept. 1.

The final deal will have to be court approved.

with files from Kate Rutherford


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