CHICAGO, Feb. 24, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Ryerson, a leading distributor and processor of metals in North America and China, announced today that it has expanded into South America for the first time by acquiring a 50% stake in Acofran Acos e Metais LTDA ("Acofran"), a steel service center based in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
"We continue exploring ways to expand our global footprint and diversify our portfolio," said Ryerson President and CEO Mike Arnold. "Brazil is a large and growing market and this investment provides Ryerson an important foothold in South America. Extending our reach will allow us to penetrate new markets and better serve our existing global customers."
Acofran's existing shareholders Omar Silva, Ivo Godoi and Eduardo Tesche retained a 50% interest in the business.
"We are excited to join forces with Ryerson. We were looking for a true strategic partner, one that would not only provide capital but also the product, industry and operational expertise we need to take Acofran to the next level," said Mr. Godoi. "Given its scale, global reach and commitment to growth, Ryerson is the ideal partner for Acofran."
Acofran was established in 1982 and specializes in cutting and distributing special, tool and engineered steel. The company's product line comprises primarily long products, specifically flat and round bar. Acofran will report to Ryerson Southeast Region President Kevin Richardson.
"Acofran is a well-run, professional metals service center and will integrate seamlessly into the Ryerson network," said Mr. Richardson. "We look forward to working with the Acofran team to expand into additional product lines and end markets. We will also continue exploring opportunities to build on our investment in South America through additional acquisitions."
Ryerson has now completed six acquisitions in just over two years, acquiring Houston-based Texas Steel Processing in January 2010; Mobile, Ala.-based Cutting Edge Metal Processing in May 2010; Houston-based SFI-Gray Steel in August 2010; Streetsboro, Ohio-based Singer Steel in March 2011; andPittsburgh-based Turret Steel Industries in December 2011.
Ryerson, a Platinum Equity company, is a leading North American processor and distributor of metals, with operations in the United States, Mexico, Canada, China and Brazil. The company distributes and processes various kinds of metals, including stainless and carbon steel and aluminum products.