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INLAND STEEL INDUSTRIES HOLDS COMMISSIONING CEREMONIES

 INLAND STEEL INDUSTRIES HOLDS COMMISSIONING CEREMONIES
 NEW CARLISLE, Ind., May 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Inland Steel Industries,


Inc., (NYSE: IAD) and Nippon Steel Corp. today held commissioning ceremonies for I/N Kote, their $550 million state-of-the-art galvanizing facility, which supplies corrosion-resistant sheet steel products to the automotive and other industries.
 Frank W. Luerssen, Inland's chairman and chief executive officer, said the event marked "an important milepost in Inland's steel strategy, which is to achieve global eminence as a supplier of sheet steels for the consumer durables industries."
 I/N Kote is adjacent to Inland's and Nippon Steel's first joint venture, the $525 million I/N Tek, the world's most advanced continuous cold mill. Together, the two facilities represent an investment of $1.1 billion and are the largest American-Japanese joint ventures in the country.
 "Two years ago, at the dedication of I/N Tek, I said that it represented 'a new dimension in international cooperation,' which we hoped would stand as a model for the future -- and it has," Luerssen said.
 Underlying Inland's steel strategy, Luerssen said, is the belief that "superior technology is essential to achieving meaningful product differentiation and acceptable financial performance in manufacturing. These two joint ventures have been built in fulfillment of that strategy." He added that "Nippon Steel has been a significant partner in the development of much of that technology," not only at I/N Tek and I/N Kote, but in improvements made in steelmaking processes at Inland's Indiana Harbor Works in East Chicago, Ind.
 Hiroshi Saito, representative director and president of Nippon Steel, said Inland and NSC "worked hard to achieve an early completion and smooth start-up of I/N Kote. We ran into difficult problems more than once, but were able to overcome them thanks to excellent teamwork. The result is this world-class galvanizing plant, which is the pride of both of our companies.
 "I earnestly hope," said Saito, "that, with the products from these two joint venture plants of ours being fully accepted by the American market, we can set a fine example for U.S.-Japan industrial partnerships, and contribute importantly to the future development of the steel industries of both countries and also to the further strengthening of the alliance and friendship between the United States and Japan."
 Clayton Yeutter, counselor to the President for domestic policy, and Frank O'Bannon, lieutenant governor of Indiana, were the major speakers at the commissioning.
 Some 200 people attended a luncheon and welcoming ceremony at the Joyce Athletic and Convocation Center of the University of Notre Dame in South Bend. In the afternoon, they toured the I/N Tek and I/N Kote mills near New Carlisle, and took part in the commissioning ceremonies, which were concluded with a performance by ONDEKOZA, the famous Japanese drummers.
 Subsidiaries of Inland and Nippon Steel each own a 50 percent interest in I/N Kote. Inland has a 60 percent stake and Nippon Steel a 40 percent share of I/N Tek.
 The I/N Kote facility has two galvanizing lines: a continuous hot- dip line with a capacity of 500,000 tons a year and an electrolytic line with an annual capacity of 400,000 tons. Both lines began commercial production late last year. They are expected to reach their design capacity by early 1993.
 I/N Tek and Inland Steel Co.'s No. 3 Cold Strip Mill at the Indiana Harbor Works provide all the cold-rolled steel coils for I/N Kote. The hot-rolled coils processed by I/N Tek are supplied by the 80-inch Hot Strip Mill at the Harbor Works, which is about 55 miles west of New Carlisle.
 Both of the new galvanizing lines at I/N Kote are equipped to process pure zinc and zinc-alloy coated products. The use of galvanized steel provides increased corrosion protection for automobiles, trucks, washers, dryers, refrigerators, and other consumer durables.
 Electrogalvanizing, an electroplating process, offers great flexibility in the types of coatings that can be produced. Hot-dip galvanizing provides greater flexibility with thicker coatings. Coating type and thickness influence the corrosion protection and other properties of the product.
 I/N Kote's electrolytic galvanizing technology was supplied by Arus Andritz-Ruthner, Inc., of Austria. The hot-dip line was designed by Nippon Steel. Financing for the project was provided by the Industrial Bank of Japan.
 "As international joint ventures in an increasingly confrontational global economy, I/N Tek and I/N Kote represent a remarkable accomplishment and, for us, a tremendous and promising opportunity," said Robert J. Darnall, Inland's president and chief operating officer.
 "These facilities represent a commitment to the future of the American steel industry and to the success of our customers in the automotive and appliance industries. They embody our belief in technological superiority, uncompromising product quality, global cooperation, and teamwork that achieves constantly improving productivity."
 Yet, impressive as is the new technology, Darnall said, "it will be of little value unless it brings improved quality to our customers and financial stability to Inland and our employees. Our goal is to improve profitability and dampen the impact of downturns in the business cycle, which have been so devastating to the steel industry."
 I/N Tek and I/N Kote are jointly managed and operated by Americans and Japanese. The work force consists of 530 people, half of whom have been drawn from the South Bend and New Carlisle area. The remainder were transfers from the parent companies, including 150 trained operating and maintenance workers from the Indiana Harbor Works.
 Darnall said teamwork is at the heart of the work culture at I/N Tek and I/N Kote. Many responsibilities traditionally performed by management are handled by unionized work teams operating without foremen. Members are challenged to maximize their contribution to the organization to achieve its mission -- to become the premier supplier of cold-rolled and coated sheet products and services in the world.
 The two facilities contain 1.1 million square feet of space and are more than half a mile in length. At any one time, nearly five miles of steel coil may be in process on I/N Tek's and I/N Kote's three highly automated lines.
 Tying the operations together is the most sophisticated computer architecture in the steel industry. More than 40 on-line computers control the process from order receipt to manufacturing and preventative maintenance on the shop floor to the wrapping and storage of coils and finally to shipping and billing.
 "There are no manual, paper-based systems here," said Darnall. "Not only has everything been computerized, but it has been integrated, which is a singular achievement."
 I/N Kote's sister facility, I/N Tek, combines five separate operations into a single continuous process. It completes in less than an hour work that would require 12 days in a conventional mill.
 John L. Selky, president of I/N Tek and I/N Kote and host of the commissioning luncheon and tour, said I/N Tek is now operating at its design capability of 1 million tons a year.
 "Our two-year-old facility," Selky said, "is turning out cold- rolled sheet steels that are unmatched in gauge control and uniformity for our major customers -- the automotive, appliance, and office furniture markets."
 Nippon Steel Corp., headquartered in Tokyo, is a diversified company and the world's largest manufacturer of steel.
 Inland Steel Industries, Inc., headquartered in Chicago, is the parent company of Inland Steel Co., the nation's fifth largest steel producer, and Inland Materials Distribution Group, Inc., the largest steel service center network in the U.S.
 -0- 5/12/92
 /CONTACT: Robert Lefley of Inland Steel Industries, 312-899-3170/
 (IAD) CO: Inland Steel Industries, Inc. ST: Indiana IN: MNG SU:


LR -- NY118 -- 9404 05/12/92 18:29 EDT
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Date:May 12, 1992
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