Compiled By Tonya Vinas Nucor Corp., Charlotte, N.C., furthered its growth-through-acquisition strategy this week with the $35 million purchase of North Star Steel, Kingman, Ariz. Nucor has made several acquisitions in the past year, including the purchase of the assets of Birmingham Steel Corp., Birmingham, Ala., for $615 million in December. At North Star, which has an annual melting capacity of 650,000 tons and rolling capacity exceeding 500,000 tons, the melt shop and the rebar and wire rod rolling facility have been idled. "North Star stopped operating this facility because it could not find a way to make the facility economically viable," says Dan DiMicco, Nucor's vice chairman, president and CEO. "We will immediately begin discussing issues with state and local authorities, as well as with potential suppliers to find the most effective solution for profitability operating the plant." DiMicco says the company won't begin operations until the proper engineering, financial, operating and tax issues have been settled. In February, Nucor announced 2002 consolidated net sales of $4.568 billion, up 10% from 2001.