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Norfolk Iron Completes O'Neal Flat Rolled Acquisition

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Norfolk Iron & Metal has completed the acquisition of O’Neal Flat Rolled Metals. FRM was a wholly owned subsidiary of O’Neal Industries, Birmingham, Ala.

The acquisition represents the largest for Norfolk Iron & Metals, the Nebraska-based steel service center company that was the 24th-largest in North America in the most recent Metal Center News’ Top 50.

“We’ve been looking to grow for several years. And we found the OFR opportunity. We liked it because it was a great fit for us as far as product and geography and culture,” said Dick Robinson, president of Norfolk Iron.

O’Neal Flat Rolled Metals focuses on processing and distributing nonferrous and carbon flat-rolled products from eight facilities occupying 650,000 square feet, principally in the western United States. OFR will return to its former name, Metalwest, and will operate as a subsidiary of NIM.

The acquisition will enhance Norfolk Iron’s geographic footprint by adding eight new locations, while also expanding its product lines and capabilities for processing flat rolled carbon, stainless and aluminum products.

“We have virtually no product overlap. Our product is heavier carbon. Theirs is more lighter gauge and cold-rolled. NIM does not have market penetration in aluminum and stainless. They’re very successful in a aluminum and stainless. And it takes is into Texas and New Jersey. It really just broadens our geography, Robinson said.

Robinson said the transaction moved along rather rapidly, with conversations with ONI beginning in July 1. Norfolk will now undergo the process of integrating such a large operation into its existing company structure.

“We spent a lot of times the last couple of months on the integration question. Luckily, and one of the main reasons we really liked them, is they have a great management in place. They’ve done a great job of running the division,” Robinson said.

All members of OFR’s management team are continuing in their current roles, with Jeff Simons continuing as president and CEO.

“We could not be more excited about joining the Norfolk Iron team,” said Simons. “Our businesses create a family of companies with a broad geographic footprint and deep product offering, ready to meet the growing demands of our customer base.”

“We thank Jeff Simons and the entire OFR team for their years of outstanding service and dedication to our company. We couldn’t be more pleased to have the OFR team become a part of Norfolk Iron & Metal, and we wish them every success,” said Holman Head, president and COO of O’Neal Industries.  

Headwall Partners LLC and XMS Capital Partners, LLC are serving as financial advisors, and Maynard Cooper & Gale is providing legal services to O’Neal Industries. Abrahams Kaslow & Cassman LLP is acting as legal counsel to Norfolk Iron. Financing has been provided by First National Bank of Omaha.

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