The UK-based Liberty House, owned by Indian-origin businessman Sanjeev Gupta, has opted out of the race for distressed assets, ABG Shipyard and Amtek Auto. It had earlier evinced interest in buying the sick assets to gain an entry into the fast-growing Indian market. But its 700 million dollar acquisition of Australian mining and materials company Arrium and the $1 billion revamp commitments there has deterred the group from pursuing acquisitions in India.
"Earlier we expressed interest in buying assets. But we have withdrawn from that position after the financial commitment in Australia," said an official in Liberty House. At the same time, the official said that creating a foothold in India would always be a priority for the company.
Liberty House bought the assets of Amtek Aluminium Castings (Witham) and King Automotive Systems (Amtek UK) for an undisclosed sum from administrators PwC in July. Around the same time, it acquired two pipe mills of Tata Steel UK in Hartlepool. Earlier, it bought the specialty steel business of Tata Steel UK for 100 million pound.
Born in a business family in Punjab, the 45-year-old Gupta founded Liberty House Group at age of 20 while studying for his masters in economics and management. Today, Liberty headquartered in Mayfair, London has global hubs in Dubai, Singapore and Hong Kong. The company focuses on ferrous and non-ferrous metal trading, metals recycling, steel and aluminium production, and engineering products and services. The company, together with the SIMEC Group, part of the GFG Alliance, purchased the Lochaber aluminium smelter plant from Rio Tinto Group in November 2016. It employs over 4,500 people.