The UK’s steel industry has been dealt a further below after PwC confirmed that a team of administrators has taken over a significant portion of Caparo Industries.
Sixteen of the steel group’s 20 divisions have gone into administration, placing up to 1,700 at jobs at risk.
The news comes as Tata Steel confirmed 1,200 job losses at its Scunthorpe and Lanarkshire mills.
The crisis started last month when SSI announced it was to pause steel-making at its Teesside facility, a move that was followed by the closure of the plant and the company’s UK arm being liquidated, resulting in 2,200 job losses.
PwC said all staff at Midlands and London-based Caparo would attend work as normal while their review of the business gets under way.
Lead administrator Matt Hammond cited “steel prices and exchange rates” as having put pressure on the business, echoing concerns expressed across the industry that cheaper imports have priced out UK steel.
Mr Hammond said: “This is a significant business with a wide range of interests across steel, engineering, vehicles products and technologies.
“Its scale and reach into significant customers and its importance to suppliers cannot be understated.
“We will be rapidly assessing all options for the businesses through this week and beyond.
“Steel prices and exchange rates have had an impact on some parts of the Caparo Industries group.
“However, there are businesses in the group that are not directly affected by steel prices, and likewise many where there is both strong customer demand and critical supplier support.
“Our focus for the next 36 hours is on briefing staff across the group and working closely with their management teams to ensure every opportunity for these businesses is considered.
“We will be working with all parties to ensure the best outcome for all creditors of each business.”
Yesterday, trade body UK Steel called on David Cameron to use the state visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to raise concerns over the so-called “dumping” of subsidised steel from China in Europe.