Both Saarhütten (Saar iron and steelworkplants) in Völklingen and Dillingen have found niches over the past few years, in which they are “top” of the hard to come by global market. Steel from Saarland has become an internationally-recognized premium product. It helps the incorporation of the Dillinger Hüttenwerke as well as Saarstahl AG to implement their successful strategy worldwide, close to the markets and close to clients. As flat steel manufacturer focusing on heavy plates, Dillinger Hütte always maintained a special place in the steel industry. Whether for machinery or boiler construction, steel construction, the building machinery sector or for offshore industry and pipeline construction, the high-tech plates of Dillinger Hütte travel around the world today to become part of many large projects. From the Shanghai World Financial Center (China) to the Golden Ears Bridge in Vancouver (Canada), from the Viaduc de Millau in France to the Heron Tower in London to the wind turbine offshore structures such as Alpha Ventus off the East Frisian island of Borkum.
Yet, above all, it takes part in the general energy boom through its quality supply to the 50-per-cent associated company Europipe (world-leading manufacturers of large-diameter pipes for the transportation of oil and gas), especially when this has to do with demanding conduit pipes, for example in deep seas or arctic regions.
There is practically no international pipeline project world wide for which Dillinger Blech does not go into action. Saarstahl AG, with headquarters in Völklingen and locations in Neunkirchen and Saarbrücken-Burbach, has transformed itself over the past few years as long steel manufacturer on the international market of industrial mass producers a to specialist. 60 per cent of Saarstahl’s rolled metal products go to the automotive sector, among other things as tyre cord, screws and bolts. Steel from Völklingen goes to high-tech products of the automobile industry and its suppliers (like common-rail systems from Bosch Homburg), just as to international aerospace (Ariane). A particular highlight within the Saarstahl concern, the Saarschmiede counts as a premium supplier of open-die forged pieces for the energy sector.
Furthermore, the open-die forging found in construction (Forge Saar) will double the Völklinger Schmiede capacity with a 12,000-tonne compactor and two manipulators and will reinforce the today already outstanding market position internationally. The new forge is to begin operation in mid-2010 with an investment volume of 450 million euros and 500 new work places. The business conceptions of both Saarhütten have, in the meantime, become fairly similar. Both Saarstahl and Dillinger Hütte have established themselves as premium manufacturers, away from mass steel and towards high-quality special steel with increasingly demanding areas of application. Intensive research and development work flows into considerable future investments, in order to develop products for the markets of tomorrow with their clients. Both companies together target an investment volume of over 800 million euros between 2007 and 2011. Among these are important joint projects such as the refurbishment of the Zentralkokerei Saar GmbH (ZKS) (renewal of the third coke battery), the construction of the blast-furnace-gas power plant as well as the construction of a third Kohlenmühle for the expansion of the ROGESA coal grinding plant.
Here, particular value is laid on the protection of the environment; a minimum of one third of all investments dedicates itself to this theme.
Due to their different products, Dillinger Hütte and Saarstahl represent themselves separately on the markets, but look to develop as many similarities as possible in order to enhance synergies. This counts for the commonly-owned subsidiaries, Zentralkokerei Saar GmbH (ZKS) as well as also ROGESA Roheisengesellschaft Saar mbH, both with headquarters in Dillingen. The growing co-operation between Dillinger Hütte and Saarstahl also expresses itself in the increasing interlock on a managerial level. Relations Director, Dr. Karlheinz Blessing, and Finance Manager, Fred Metzken, are equally seated in the Dillinger Board of Representatives under the direction of Dr. Paul Belche, as well as in the Völklinger Board under the direction of Dr. Klaus Harste. A special focus of both companies is the training of young people. Saarstahl and Dillinger Hütter hope to secure a stem of qualified skilled workers for the future.
Both are among the by far largest training companies on the Saar. As Saarland is a region with a rooted industrial tradition, the Saar steel industry has, as ever, succeeded to win over many young people. The demand for training positions at Dillinger Hütte and the Saarstahl AG is, as ever, very high.
The steel industry of the Saarland strategically decided on a path independent from major international concerns. Through the sale of more than 20 per cent of the shares of DHS – Dillinger Hütte Saarstahl AG, Dillingen – on part of the largest steel concern in the world, ArcelorMittal, to Saarland shareholders, the Luxembourgers lost the former nominal majority of shares to Dillingen and now only hold 30.08 per cent. All other shares of the Saarstahl AG and AG of the Dillinger Hüttenwerke are in hand of the Saarland.
Dr. Ing. Klaus Harste studied and attained his doctorate in Clausthal. Then occupied in science at Clausthal University of Technology, he changed to the AG of the Dillinger Hüttenwerke in 1989 and to Saarstahl in 2001. He has been chairman of the board at Saarstahl AG since 2009