RUSSIAN steelmaker Evraz, which counts Roman Abramovich as its majority shareholder, said production volumes remained flat in the first quarter yesterday.
The company, which is chaired by the Chelsea FC owner, said consolidated crude steel output was stable at 3.9m tonnes with its mills at full capacity. The production of steel products, net of re-rolled volumes, was also unchanged, at 3.7m.
Within this category, the firm increased production of railway products by seven per cent and semi-finished goods for export rose by five per cent.
However, this was offset by a fall in production volumes of other products, caused by tough market conditions for construction products in Russia and North America. Steel production is expected to decrease during the second quarter as a result of 24-day scheduled maintenance works at the Evraz NTMK’s blast furnaces.
The company announced it would be returning $336m (£225m) to shareholders after the successful tender of 108.5m shares at $3.10 each, with shareholders able to offer up to a maximum of eight per cent of their shares.
The tender, which was overseen by Morgan Stanley, accounted for 7.20 per cent of the issued share capital on 17 April when the offer closed. The proceeds of the tender offer are expected to be returned to shareholders on Thursday.
Shares in Evraz closed up 0.47 per cent yesterday.