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Mittal-Arcelor rings 'take over' bell in India

Written by: Pavithra Rao

Sunday, June 25, 2006 was a big day for L N Mittal and also for Indian entrepreneurs. London based L N Mittal won the crown of global steel industry after a fierce battle of bids.

Russia's Severstal was competing hard for Arcelor but Mittal took control by making an offer the shareholders of Arcelor could not resist. His bid was powerful enough to beat the racists who preferred an European taking over their firm. The 26.8 billion euros or .5 billion deal has won Mittal 49.4 per cent stake in the new company. The merger is a milestone that consolidates 10 per cent of global steel market share. With 320,000 employees and an estimated billion in revenue, the company will be the first steelmaker with more than 100 million tons of annual capacity.

So what makes the Mittal-Arcelor deal so big, specially to Indians? Is it the merger of two major global steel players? Or is it the fact that Mittal, an Indian, is a global steel tycoon?

None, it is the fact that an Indian organisation has taken over a top manufacturing company abroad.

The world has always looked west for leaders and trend-setters. Asian countries, specially India, was mostly considered as a backend help by the western companies and India too proved itself as a favourable outsourcing destination. Neither the world expected nor did the Indians show a strong desire to grow out of the western mould.

But with Mittal, the steel man from India, taking over a foreign firm, a strange sense of confidence and desire to excel has gripped the Indian industry. Indian entrepreneurs now want to prove themselves as worldwide leaders in their respective segments. The Mittal-Arcelor deal has set a 'take-over' trend in India.

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