History of Hunan Valin Steel, Changsha, China.

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History of Hunan Iron & Steel History of Hunan Iron and Steel

The Hunan Valin Steel Group, located in Changsha China, is a leading global steelmaker. In 2022 the company (now known as Hunan Iron & Steel) produced over 26 million tonnes of steel, making it the 13th largest steelmaker in the world.

The timeline below covers the history of the firm.

  • 1997: Hunan Valin Steel Company Ltd founded in 1997.
  • 1999: Listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.
  • 2005: Mittal Steel buys 37% stake in Valin subsidiary.
  • 2007: Announces plan for joint mine investments with ArcelorMittal.
  • 2009: Seeks acquisitions in order to double steelmaking capacity.
  • 2009: Hunan Valin acquires small stake in Fortescue Metals.
  • 2014: JV with Mittal Steel to enter Chinese car market.
  • 2014: Deputy General Manager Zheng Boping of China Valin Steel in bribe probe.
  • 2016: Strategic shift annnounced into financial services.
  • 2017: Reorientation plan away from steel abandoned.
  • 2018: Disposal by ArcelorMittal of its ownership stake.
  • 2019: Reduces ownership stake in Fortescue to 13.06%.
  • 2019: Announces plan for Valin Steel to acquire Yangchun New Steel.
  • 2020: Installs Danieli Corus sublance system for BOF process control.
  • 2020: Signs new Memorandum of Understanding with FMG for supply of iron ore.
  • 2022: Announces investment in new 600kt/year rod mill at Valin Xiangtan I&S.
  • 2023: First phase of 200 kt/yr electrical steel project advances.

  • 2005: The purchase by Netherlands-registered Mittal Steel of an equity stake in a Hunan Valin subsidiary signified the first investment by a major foreign steelmaker in the Chinese steel sector. This was regarded as an important sign of the growing interest of foreign steel companies in the Chinese market.
  • 2009: This was an acquisition of a 16.5% stake in Australia's third biggest iron ore producer at the time, Fortescue Metals, for US$771 million. Chinese investors generally were keen on investment in debt-strapped Australian resources companies at this time.
  • 2014: The JV went operational in June 2014. Annual production capacity was ~1.5 million tonnes, with manufacture of various metal chassis and wheel parts.
  • 2015: Li Xiaowei, former chairman of Hunan Valin Iron and Steel, later also came under investigation in a Chinese corruption probe.
  • 2016: Valin strategic shift driven by overcapacity in the Chinese steel market and reduced profitability. The change of strategy involved Valin acquisition of notable stakes in several financial and electricity companies. These acquisitions included a 100% equity stake in Fortune Securities; a 96% stake in Hunan Trust; a 29.19% stake in Jixiang Life Insurance; a 100% stake in Xiangtan Valin Energy Saving Power Generation; as well as a 100% stake in Hunan Valin Energy Saving Power Generation.
  • 2017: Hunan Valin in Feb 2017 received approval from China's securities regulator to issue shares and purchase a 100% stake of Hunan Caixin Investment Holding Co. Ltd., a financial holding platform. At the same time, Hunan Valin planned to sell off its steel production assets. By mid-2017 however, this plan got abandoned. An improved performance of Hunan Valin's steel production assets was cited by the steelmaker as the reason for the change of plan.
  • 2018: The 2016 / 2017 developments caused ArcelorMittal to transfer some 10% of its ownership of Hunan Valin Steel (its entire stake worth ~$166 million) to the state-owned China Reform Fund. Following ArcelorMittal's ownership exit, it is understood that Valin will continue to produce and supply advanced automotive steel light-weight solutions to automotive OEMs, helping them to meet evolving standards of safety and energy efficiency as required by the Chinese automotive industry.
  • 2019: Hunan Valin reduced its equity stake in the Fortescue Metals Group by about 1.14 per cent to 13.06 per cent in early March 2019.
  • 2020: Sublance-based process control systems offer BOF plants the ability to reduce tap-to-tap times and reduce utility consumption thus reducing operating costs and improving technical performance.
  • 2020: In November 2020 FMG signed MoUs with long-term partner Hunan Valin Iron & Steel Group for the supply of iron ore. FMG also signed another nine agreements with Baotou Iron & Steel (Group) Co, Benxi I&S Group International Economic and Trading Co, Dalian Huarui Heavy Industry Group Co, Guangxi Shenglong Metallurgical Co, Lingyuan Iron and Steel Co, Rizhao Steel Holding Group Co, RGL Group Co, Shaanxi Iron and Steel Group Import & Export Co, and Tianjin Jianlong I&S Industrial Co. These agreements came amid fears that China would impose bans on the import of Australian iron ore.
  • 2022: New high-speed wire rod production line at Valin subsidiary Xiangtan Iron and Steel will have an annual production output of 600,000 tonnes. Plant construction cost will be RMB 700 million (USD $99 million) and mill commissioning is expected at end-2023.
  • 2023: New silicon steel plant is expected to start operation at end-2023. It will have annual production of ~200,000 tonnes of non-oriented silicon steel; 100,000 tonnes of cold hard coil of non-oriented silicon steel; and produce up to 90,000 tonnes of cold hard coil of oriented silicon steel. High-grade non-oriented electrical steel will be used to supply the automotive sector.

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