Fate of Metal Magnate’s Empire Looms Over U.S. Blue-Collar Towns

While the drama of Greensill’s collapse is unfolding in financial centers like London and Zurich, and has sparked a scandal at the top of British politics, blue-collar towns could face the worst consequences if GFG fails to refinance, the Wall Street Journal reported. GFG employs about 35,000 people, mainly in economically deprived parts of Europe, Australia and the U.S., with some sites at risk of closure if Sanjeev Gupta doesn’t secure new finance and governments don’t step in. Gupta was dubbed the savior of steel in Britain after buying up unloved metals businesses in run-down areas. He followed a similar playbook in the U.S., acquiring Georgetown steelworks in 2017 and six other assets for what he said would be a significant American steel business. That business never fully materialized. Two plants Mr. Gupta bought—including Georgetown—stand idle, and even before Greensill’s troubles, his company, Liberty Steel, was accused by some suppliers of having unpaid bills. Read more. (Subscription required.)