Even as his company continues its pursuit of France's Arcelor, Lakshmi N. Mittal, chairman and CEO of Mittal Steel Co., is thinking bigger. Specifically, Mittal envisions a world in which the large, global steel producers will have annual capacity of 150 to 200 million tons. In 2005, Mittal Steel's output was 49.2 million tons.
"Scale is a crucial ingredient in the pursuit of value," he told an international steel conference in New York this week. "Value is the aim -- and scale is the means -- not the only means, but an important part of the mix," he said.
The "winning business model of the future" -- and by future he means the year 2015 --"will be based around [steel] industry leaders considerably larger than they are today," Mittal stated. And, he added, "these same companies will be embedded in both high-growth and high-value markets, spanning a range of products from commodity to higher value-added.
Coming back to value creation, Mittal claimed that the steel industry has disappointed its shareholders for too many years. "This I am determined to change," he said. "Shareholders must be at the heart of this business vision. It is not enough that we come to conferences and congratulate ourselves on progress made."