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No more Essar Steel; it's now Mesabi Metallics

A federal bankruptcy judge in Delaware has approved a new name for the company formerly known as Essar Steel Minnesota. Mesabi Metallics was officially approved earlier this week as the new name of the still-bankrupt entity that controls a half-b...

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A road at the Essar Steel site leads to the pellet plant pictured in October 2015. (file photo / News Tribune)
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A federal bankruptcy judge in Delaware has approved a new name for the company formerly known as Essar Steel Minnesota.

Mesabi Metallics was officially approved earlier this week as the new name of the still-bankrupt entity that controls a half-built but shuttered taconite mine and processing center in Nashwauk.

Mesabi Metallics is now controlled by a California investment firm, SPL Advisors, that is trying to broker a deal to pay off some of Essar's $1 billion debt, work out a payment plan for contractors owed money, and find about $800 million to finish the project now estimated at nearly $2.6 billion to complete.

SPL has until an April court hearing to package a deal acceptable to all parties. If approved, the company hopes to begin producing taconite, with 350 employees, by 2019.

There were no objections to the change filed in court. Judge Brendan Shannon noted that the company still must file its name change with the Minnesota Secretary of State's office.

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Essar Steel Minnesota was an offshoot of the India-based Essar Group, which is now being sued by creditors for failing to live up to promises on the Minnesota project.

Related Topics: GRAND RAPIDSMINING
John Myers reports on the outdoors, natural resources and the environment for the Duluth News Tribune. You can reach him at jmyers@duluthnews.com.
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