Dec 19, 2023 - News

Gary, Indiana, namesake U.S. Steel to sell

A sign warning against trespassing is posted on a fence that surrounds U.S. Steel's Gary Works facility.

A sign warning against trespassing is posted on a fence that surrounds U.S. Steel's Gary Works facility. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images

Japan's Nippon Steel on Monday announced it will buy U.S. Steel for $14.9 billion.

Why it matters: U.S. Steel's rise and fall has carried (and dragged) Indiana for more than a century, with the decline of Rust Belt manufacturing leaving industrial ruins.

Flashback: U.S. Steel built Gary, Indiana, in the early 1900s, propelling it to a city of nearly 180,000 people in 1960.

  • Gary is named after Elbert Gary, a co-founder and longtime chairman of U.S. Steel.
  • The company has laid off nearly 30,000 employees in Gary since the 1970s, while the city's population has fallen to 68,000.
  • Gary Works remains U.S. Steel's largest plant, with more than 4,000 workers, per the company.

Of note: Along with Gary, other U.S. Steel co-founders included Andrew Carnegie, J.P. Morgan and Charles M. Schwab.

The big picture: One of America's most iconic companies will be owned by a foreign entity, despite domestic interest earlier this year.

Details: The $55-per-share offer represents around a 40% premium to where Pittsburgh-based U.S. Steel shares ended trading on Friday.

  • It's also substantially higher than the rebuffed bids from American rivals Cleveland Cliffs and Esmark.

What's next: Nippon says it will honor all of U.S. Steel's existing labor union agreements.

  • The deal will require regulatory approvals.
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