New Keystone owner aims for production growth

Local News

A new owner of a central Illinois steel mill is hoping to bring new jobs to the area. After a $320 million acquisition, Sanjeev Gupta welcomed American workers to his inauguration in Peoria on Tuesday, promising a big increase in output from the US mills.

For more than 130 years, generations of central Illinois families have worked at Keystone Steel, manufacturing metal, engineering and mining. Now, a new chapter in the company’s history is being written. Gupta is already examining boosting liquid steel production from 800-thousand to 1.1 millions tons a year.

“We go to places where there is a need and a want,” said Gupta. He adds, “The workforce and the communities in Peoria are all key ingredients for success.”

As part of its green steel strategy the company is exploring the potential to build a combined cycle natural gas power plant on the site to cut carbon emissions by half. CEO of Keystone Christ Armstrong, says the growth will bring several benefits to the area.

With the potential growth, Armstrong says the increased work flow would slash energy costs and enable further expansion.

“Peoria is by far are largest mill and is a significant major step in the United States and their desire to grow in the United States,” says Armstrong.

With the increase in production, and more investment in the plant officials are hopeful that 100 more positions will become available in the near future.

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