400 jobs to be lost at British Steel

British Steel has announced plans to cut 400 jobs as part of what it describes as a “streamlining process” to ensure the future growth of the business.

Based in Scunthorpe, the company is proposing the reduction of 400 managerial, professional and administrative roles at its operations throughout the UK, Ireland, France and the Netherlands.

No closures, however, are being considered as part of the process, British Steel also confirmed.

Launched in 2016, the firm currently employs more than 5,000 people across the globe. It has not yet been announced if these job cuts will affect roles at the Scunthorpe works.

Roland Junck, British Steel’s executive chairman, said: “Following our launch and early growth as a new company, it’s important our business continues to evolve. It’s imperative we enhance our products and services and become more competitive so we can increase our foothold in the market.

“We’ve already committed £120m to capital expenditure projects and are pressing ahead with the £50m upgrade to our Scunthorpe Rod Mill, which we announced in July. However, the pace of change we need in this challenging industry requires further and continued investment along with more agile and efficient operations.

“To help us achieve this, we have to make difficult decisions and our plans unfortunately include the proposed reduction of 400 roles across our global workforce. We’re sad to be making this announcement, particularly for our colleagues who could be affected.

“However, it’s vital our transformation continues so we can build a sustainable future for the whole business, nearly 5,000 employees and many more people in the supply chain. We’re confident these proposals will help achieve this.”

Gerald Reichmann, British Steel’s CFO, added: “We’ve made a strong start to life as British Steel but our external environment is constantly changing. For example, raw materials are all traded in US dollars, so the weakening of the pound and euro have implications for us. Like any business we need to be able to flex and adapt to these changes.

“Strong market conditions support the approach we’re taking – we have a robust order book and continue to secure significant contracts with customers, old and new, around the world.

“It’s unfortunate we need to go through the proposed redundancy process but by focusing on profitable, niche products I’m confident we’ll create a long-term future for our business and the communities in which we operate.”