Arkansas Economic Development Commission

Newsroom

Big River Steel Re-Pays Loan from State of Arkansas 17 Years Early

OSCEOLA, Arkansas (September 28, 2017) – Big River Steel proudly presented Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson with full re-payment of its $50 million loan – 17 years ahead of schedule – that was part of the state’s economic development efforts. That funding package helped attract Big River in 2014 to build the company’s $1.2 billion scrap metal recycling and flat-rolled steel production facility on a 1,100-acre site adjacent to the Mississippi River in northeast Arkansas.

Big River Steel was the state's first-ever Amendment 82 project and is the single largest private investment in the history of the state of Arkansas. To support Big River’s presence, the company invested $10 million with Arkansas Northeastern College for training programs to prepare applicants for the mill’s 425 positions with average compensation of $75,000. Since announcing their location three years ago, the mill has also helped attract to Arkansas an additional $300 million in investments and another 100 jobs from suppliers and support services of Big River.  

“The early repayment of this $50 million loan is a strong indication of the financial strength of Big River Steel and reaffirms my confidence in the state's investment through Amendment 82,” said Governor Asa Hutchinson. “Not only has Big River paid off the loan early, but the company has strengthened our economy with hundreds of millions of dollars in investment.”  

Big River announced in August that it had closed on $1.225 billion of financing which was used to refinance a substantial majority of its outstanding indebtedness, including the early repayment to the state. When asked to comment about the early repayment, Dave Stickler, chief executive officer, stated, "Big River Steel is extremely proud to be able to repay our state of Arkansas $50-million economic incentive loan 17 years early. Arkansas is a great place to own and operate a business and I look forward to exploring future growth opportunities with Governor Hutchinson."

Big River Steel has built the world’s first Flex Mill™, a steel mini mill focused on the production of a wide product spectrum, including advanced automotive steels and electrical steels. Big River melted its first scrap metal and produced its first steel in December 2016. Over the past ten months, the company has provided steel products to over 120 customers in the automotive, energy, construction and agricultural industries.