- The investments would enable the company to develop innovative products, increase the digitisation of its processes and strengthen its competitiveness
- Climate action: the company will be able to produce more sustainable steels and reduce energy consumption
Today, the European Investment Bank (EIB) has taken a new step in the support of innovation in the steel industry. The EU bank will support Sidenor, one of the leading companies in the production of special steel at European level, so that it may implement its strategic innovation plan aimed at improving cost efficiency, modernising and digitising its facilities, developing new products of high added value and diversifying its activity. For this purpose, the EIB will provide Sidenor with 50 million euros under the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), which is the backbone of the Investment Plan for Europe, also called the Kuncker Plan. The agreement has been signed today in Madrid by the vice-president of the EIB, Emma Navarro, and the Chairman of Sidenor, José Antonio Jainaga.
Thanks to the EIB funding, Sidenor will have cutting-edge technologies to strengthen the quality of its steels and produce in a more efficient manner, thus meeting the new needs of the market. Apart from improving its competitiveness, these investments will enable a reduction in the environmental impact of the company, which will be able to produce in a more sustainable way while consuming less energy. At the same time, the new high-quality steel products designed by the company and intended above all for the car industry will be lighter and have a longer service life.
Most of the investments financed by the EIB will be performed at Sidenor’s Basauri plant, where its R&D&I centre is located, digitising its production processes and applying innovative solutions. Sidenor’s strategic plan includes the second modernisation phase of the rolling mill and the building of a new finishing line as well as a new billet storage area.
All these investments will be developed over the next three years, until 2021, at the company plants which are mainly located in the Basque country, and will allow to secure employment in this sector of the steel industry. More precisely, Sidenor currently has a staff of over 2,300 people and around 50 researchers in its innovation centre.