In order to achieve the vision and further strengthen our position as an innovative, profitable, and growth-oriented steel company, SSAB applies a long-term strategy involving clear targets.
SSAB’s overall strategy is to be a leading global supplier of high strength and quenched steels, while at the same time maintaining and strengthening the positions in the domestic markets, the Nordic region and North America.
The strategic investment program which is currently being implemented will contribute to the Company’s continued growth within niche products in the coming years.
Global leadership within high strength steels
SSAB has developed specialist expertise within high strength and quenched steels, which provides productivity and environmental benefits for end customers. These steels have demonstrated a higher rate of growth and better profitability than ordinary steels. Increased societal demand for savings in energy and resources, as well as cost-efficiency, are strong motivating forces behind demand for SSAB’s niche products.
In order to continue to grow and strengthen the positions, SSAB is continuously endeavoring to develop and broaden the market for high strength steels by working close to the customers and by offering cutting-edge expertise within applications development. Strong brands are a further way for SSAB to strengthen its position. The Group’s strategic targets is that niche products shall account for 50 percent of the Group’s total volumes by 2015.
Cutting edge expenrtise within applications development
SSAB possesses strong expertise in high strength steels. Our know-how covers design and construction, as well as processing, in order to exploit the qualities of the steel to the best advantage.
SSAB devotes significant resources to research and development for new applications, and consequently the Company is an attractive partner for customers for product and applications development. This close cooperation creates conditions for long term relationships and increased sales of SSAB’s niche products. Accordingly, SSAB is focusing strategically on continued skills development.
Proximity to the customer
By operating and acting in proximity to the customer, conditions are created for rapidly identifying the customers’ future needs and developing new applications for high strength steels. Through the reorganization of the operations into geographic business areas, which was carried out in 2010, SSAB has strengthened and further clarified its offering to customers. The Group’s various units co-operate so that customers are offered a complete range of solutions and products in the various markets. The Company’s sales are dictated by the customers’ needs, irrespective of where the products are manufactured. Proximity to the customer is important in all markets. There continues to be a great need for infrastructure development, first and foremost in China, while at the same time demands for environmental performance and sustainability considerations are increasing. One of SSAB’s strategic targets is to strengthen its presence in Asia, particularly in China, by increasing sales of high strength steels in Asia to 20 percent of total niche product volumes by 2015.
Understanding the end customer’s needs plays an important part in the work of accelerating growth within high strength steels. For this reason, SSAB has created meeting places for customers and end users at which SSAB’s products and expertise are on display.
The international network, Hardox Wearparts, is an example of this. The end customers can identify companies which are members of the network and which manufacture high quality wear parts made of Hardox steel products.
SSAB’s annual events, Experience High Strength Steel Day and the Swedish Steel Prize, which attract visitors from throughout the world, represent other examples. During the course of two days, existing and potential customers are able to visit the Company’s plants and research centers and take part in seminars. Through the Swedish Steel Prize, SSAB has increased interest in, and drawn attention to, the new possibilities afforded by high strength steels.
SSAB’s products possess excellent qualities for high strength, abrasion resistance, and formability. These factors have contributed to a strong position in the market. By creating its own product brands, SSAB has achieved a high degree of recognition. The profiled product brands include Hardox, Domex, Weldox, Docol, Armox, Prelaq and Toolox.
“Hardox in my body” is an example of the brand programs. By the customers’ marking their products with the “Hardox in my body” emblem, the customer obtains a stamp of quality, while at the same time SSAB’s brand is further strengthened.
Strong position in domestic markets
Within ordinary steels, having production close to the customers provides significant cost benefits. Thus, SSAB is constantly working on securing and developing its strong positions in its domestic markets, the Nordic region and North America. This provides SSAB with a stable platform for long term customer relations within both niche products and ordinary steels, and in the long term creates a basis for a transition from ordinary steels to niche products.
SSAB is the leading supplier of strip products in the Nordic region. SSAB’s subsidiary, Tibnor, is a leading full-range distributor with a significant market share in the Nordic countries.
SSAB is the leading supplier of plate in North America, with sales directly to end customers and via distributors.