Tata appoints UK chief executive amid hunt for steel plants buyer


Tata has appointed a chief executive for its UK steel business as efforts continue to find a buyer for its loss-making plants.

Bimlendra Jha, an executive member of Tata Steel Europe, takes up the new post at a critical time for the crisis-hit industry.

He is executive chairman of Tata's Long Products business, including the huge plant in Scunthorpe, which was sold last week to Greybull Capital.

Tata revealed it had contacted 190 potential financial and industrial investors worldwide since launching its sale process a week ago.

Mr Koushik Chatterjee, group executive director of Tata Steel, said: "Today's announcement by Tata Steel Europe will ensure the full focus on the vital tasks that lie ahead of Tata Steel UK.

"Bimlendra's successful experience of the process of divestment of Long Products Europe will be invaluable as Tata Steel Europe explores strategic alternatives for its operations in the UK.

"He will be supported by a team with immense operating experience of the UK business.

"To deliver greater clarity for all key stakeholders such as employees, customers and suppliers, it is important for the new team to seek all credible options in a time-bound manner."

Tata also announced the appointment of Standard Chartered Bank as an additional adviser to its sale process.

Meanwhile, Business Secretary Sajid Javid joined ministers from other countries at a meeting in Brussels to discuss the global glut of steel that has pushed British production to the brink of collapse.