Sparrows Point sale closes

RG Steel LLC, an affiliate of The Renco Group Inc., said Thursday it had closed its $1.2 billion deal to buy three steel plants, including the former Bethlehem steel plant at Sparrows Point, from OAO Severstal.

In addition to Sparrows Point, RG Steel purchased integrated steel plants at Warren, Ohio, and Wheeling, W. Va.

The Russian steel giant had paid $2.2 billion for the plants in 2008. Of the total amount, Severstal paid $810 million for Sparrows Point.

John Goodwin, president and CEO of RG Steel, said the plan is to get the blast furnace at Sparrows Point, which has been idled for months, up and running at full speed as soon as possible.

“Employees are being recalled to that facility as we plan for a safe and orderly resumption of operations,” Godwin said in a prepared statement. “We anticipate that the blast furnace at Sparrows Point will become operational in May.”

Privately held Renco was founded in 1975 by Ira L. Rennert. Renco’s companies have $5 billion in revenue and 15,000 employees. One of Renco’s subsidiaries is AM General — a former subsidiary of American Motors that created the Humvee military vehicle.