Esmark offers to buy American steel for cash and rocky slopes

(Bloomberg) — U.S. steelmaker Esmark Inc. said it has offered to buy United States Steel Corp. for $7.8 billion in cash, beating out an earlier bid from Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. , intends to finance its bid.

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Shares of US Steel surged after the news, up 43%. The company announced Sunday that it had begun a strategic review of alternatives after rejecting the bid from rival Cliffs, which was valued at $32.53 based on Friday’s closing prices, or $7.25 billion.

In its statement, the company said that Esmark Steel Group, a wholly owned subsidiary of Esmark Inc. Inc., is a leading processor and distributor of value-added flat rolled steel in the United States and the third largest domestic producer of plate steel. Esmark is managed by James B. Bouchard, a former US Steel Europe executive, sits on the executive committee of the American Steel Institute and the European Steel Association.

(Updates with background on Esmark.)

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