Zekelman Industries is set to build the world’s largest continuous ERW tube mill in Blytheville, close to its Atlas Tube mill. The new mill is projected to startup in September 2021.
This new facility is a $150 million investment and is the “largest private investment in the U.S. steel industry in the last decade,” according to Zekelman officials.
The largest independent steel pipe and tube manufacturer in North America, Zekelman Industries currently employs 75 individuals in Blytheville and plans to hire an additional 75 employees, bringing its total to roughly 150.
ERW, or electric resistance welded, tube is used for a variety of applications, from structural support to gas pipelines. The new facility produce “hollow structural sections (HSS) in square, rectangular and round shapes and in sizes ranging from 8″ square x 0.750″ wall to 22″ square x 1″ wall.” This will be the first time that a full range of these products will be able to be produce in the U.S.
Company executives and state officials were on hand to announce the news today (Tuesday, July 30) in Blytheville.
“We’re very excited to continue investing in a community we’ve proudly called home,” Barry Zekelman, executive chairman and CEO of Zekelman Industries said. “Having two mills within close proximity of each other will only increase our organization’s efficiency. We look forward to starting construction of this groundbreaking facility.”
“It is a great testament to our state when companies like Atlas Tube expand their operations here rather than going elsewhere,” Secretary of Commerce Mike Preston said. “We have put a lot of effort into growing the steel industry in the state, and this is the latest company to realize that Arkansas has the tools in place to help businesses succeed.”
Zekelman operates 17 North American manufacturing facilities. The new facility will be Atlas Tube’s sixth North American mill and its fifth in the United States.
“We greatly appreciate the support we’ve received from the Arkansas Economic Development Commission over the years,” said Tom Muth, president of Atlas Tube. “The AEDC has worked closely with us to ensure immense success for the Blytheville community, and we’re proud to be a part of it.”
“Arkansas has some of the most talented and dedicated steel workers in the country,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said. “Our quality workforce and low business costs make Arkansas stand out among other states as an attractive option for companies looking to expand.”