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  • Tata Steel Living Solutions to cease operations

    12 Oct 2010

    Tata Steel intends to cease operations at its Living Solutions site at Shotton, North Wales. The business was established in 2003 as a downstream diversification using the Company’s steel to make modular buildings for the construction industry.

    Andrew Black, Managing Director of Tata Steel Building Systems, said: “It is with great regret that, following a detailed review of the Living Solutions business, we have proposed to withdraw from this business activity.  Living Solutions was set up as a pilot venture to explore a non-core business prospect downstream of our normal steelmaking activity.  Given the continuing weak construction market and the impending completion of a long-term agreement to supply modules to the defence accommodation sector, Living Solutions has been unable to establish sufficient market presence to justify continuing with the business, which has never been profitable.

    “Clearly this is a very difficult time for our colleagues at Living Solutions and I would like to pay tribute to everyone who has worked so hard to try to develop this business venture.” 

    The modular buildings sector is highly competitive and the Company has already attempted to address the business’s problems by reducing costs and through a restructuring that took place last year.  Despite these efforts, there are no prospects of generating viable new business following the completion of the defence contract.

    Regrettably the proposal will put at risk 180 jobs in the Living Solutions business.  A full, formal consultation process will take place on a collective basis with the Trade Unions and employee representatives, and with all employees on an individual basis.  The Company will explore all opportunities to re-deploy employees where practical and to assist those people leaving the business through a range of support services.

    This announcement does not affect any of the other businesses at Shotton, which include Tata Steel Colors, Panels and Profiles and other Tata Steel facilities.  The Company remains committed to the long-term development of its businesses and research partnerships at Shotton.  In the past three years the company has made a number of investments, including the relocation of its Panels and Profiles business, the installation of a £6 million state-of-the-art panel line and the opening of the Photovoltaic and Sustainable Building Envelope Centres, all of which have been made to support a sustainable future for the site.

    ENDS

    For further information, please call

    Bob Jones (Tata Steel)      +44 (0)207 717 4532
    David Litterick (Brunswick)        +44 (0)207 404 5959

    Notes to Editors
    Living Solutions is a pilot development business of Tata Steel UK Ltd, which is wholly owned by Tata Steel Limited.  The business operates in the construction sector, supplying a complete modular approach to construction, typically aimed at “single” living accommodation (Army Barracks, Student Accommodation, Hotels etc).  The business has been in existence for 7 years and employs around 180 people, mostly at Shotton.