WARREN - An auction scheduled for Tuesday of bankrupt steelmaker RG Steel was postponed for ''a week or so,'' but federal court filings showed no signs of a buyer late Tuesday.
United Steelworkers 1375 president Darryl Parker released a short message on the local's website saying simply that the auction date for RG Steel LLC -Warren and RG Steel LLC-Sparrows, scheduled for Tuesday, had been postponed for about a week. Parker did not return a call and email message left seeking further information.
U.S. Bankruptcy court in Delaware had issued last week's deadline for an initial bidder to emerge. If none did, an auction was set to take place for the mills in Warren, Wheeling, W.Va., and Sparrow's Point, Md., beginning Tuesday.
Federal bankruptcy court postings list no bidder in the case and also do not list any request for a delay.
The Baltimore Sun reported that USW Local 9477 members in Baltimore were told the Sparrows Point auction has been delayed as RG Steel seeks an additional week to find a lead, or "stalking horse," bidder for the property.
Jerry Conners, president of the union's Local 1223 in Yorkville, Ohio, told that newspaper RG Steel auctions planned for Warren and the Sparrows Point facilities were both delayed to allow a primary bidder to come on board; however, the Wheeling assets were to be auctioned Tuesday as scheduled, the Baltimore newspaper reported.
RG, which owns the 1,235-worker RG Steel Warren mill, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy May 31 in Wilmington, Del., citing weak business conditions.
Creditors originally set a July 27 deadline to sell assets, including the company's largest mill at Sparrows Point, Md. They later agreed to extend the sale deadline by about two weeks in an effort to get the most money.
Under the revised plan, the bankruptcy financing agreement that's supplying cash to the company will end on Aug. 10 instead of July 27.
If RG Steel secures a lead or "stalking horse" bid, its bankruptcy financing would automatically be extended to Aug. 24, allowing 10 more days than the previous extension date. Aug. 24 is considered the absolute "drop dead" date to close a sale.