Group strategy

ArcelorMittal’s success is built on our core values of sustainability, quality and leadership, and the entrepreneurial boldness that has empowered our emergence as the first truly global steel and mining company.

Acknowledging that a combination of structural issues and macroeconomic conditions will continue to challenge returns in our sector, we have adapted our footprint to the new demand realities, intensified our efforts to control costs and repositioned our operations to outperform our competitors.

Against this backdrop, our strategy is to leverage four distinctive attributes that will enable us to capture leading positions in the most attractive areas of the steel industry value chain, from mining at one end to distribution and first-stage processing at the other:

  • Global scale and scope
  • Unmatched technical capabilities
  • Diverse portfolio of steel and related businesses, particularly mining
  • Financial capability
Action 2020

Three themes

Steel

We look to expand our leadership role in attractive markets and segments by leveraging our technical capabilities and our global scale and scope. These are critical differentiators for sophisticated customers that value the distinctive technical and service capabilities we offer. Such customers are typically found in the automotive, energy, infrastructure and a number of smaller markets where ArcelorMittal is a market leader. In addition, we are present in, and will further develop, attractive steel businesses that benefit from favourable market structures or geographies. In developing attractive steel businesses, our goal is to be the supplier of choice by anticipating customers’ requirements and exceeding their expectations. We will invest to develop and grow these businesses and enhance our ability to serve our customers. Given the current environment, that investment will be highly disciplined. Commodity steel markets will inevitably remain an important part of ArcelorMittal’s steel portfolio. Here, a lean cost structure should limit the downside in weak markets while allowing us to capture the upside in strong markets.

Mining

ArcelorMittal is working to continue to create value from our world-class mining business. Mining forms part of the steel value chain but typically enjoys a number of structural advantages, such as a steeper cost curve. Our strategy is to create value from our most significant assets, through selective expansion/debottlenecking, by controlling cost and capital expenditure, and by supplying products that are highly valued by steel producers. ArcelorMittal's financial capability allowed us to continue to invest in key mining assets (notably ArcelorMittal Mines Canada), while the diversity of our steel and mining portfolio enables the mining business to optimise the value of its products in the steelmaking process. Our mining business aspires to be the supplier of choice for a balanced mix of both internal and external customers, while at the same time providing a natural hedge against market volatility for our steel operations.

All operations

ArcelorMittal strives to achieve best-in-class competitiveness. Operational excellence, including health and safety, the number one priority, is at the core of our strategy in both steel and mining. We steadily optimise our asset base to ensure we are achieving high operating rates at our best assets. Our technical capabilities and the diversity of our portfolio of businesses underpin a strong commitment to institutional learning and continuous improvement through measures such as benchmarking and best-practice sharing. Innovation in products and processes also plays an important role while supporting overall competitiveness.

Five key strategic enablers

Critical to implementing this strategy are five key enablers:

1

A clear licence to operate

Many of ArcelorMittal's businesses are located in regions that are in the early stages of economic development. Practically all are resource-intensive. We recognise that we have an obligation to act responsibly towards all stakeholders. ArcelorMittal's commitment to sustainability is outlined in the sustainability section. Sustainability is a core value that underlies our efforts to be both the world’s safest steel and mining company and a responsible environmental steward.

2

A strong balance sheet

In recent years we have made significant progress in reducing debt. Post its most recent actions, the Company now has a solid balance sheet and a platform to deliver on its strategic plans. In the currently foreseen environment the Company’s priority for free cash deployment will be further strengthening the balance sheet until such time that the ratio of net debt to Ebitda declines to less than 2x, at which point the Board will consider restarting dividends to shareholders.

3

A decentralised organisational structure

ArcelorMittal's scale and scope are defining characteristics that give us a competitive advantage. They also introduce complexity and the risks of inefficiency, bureaucracy and diffuse accountability. To manage these risks, we favour a structure in which the responsibility for profit and loss is focused on business units aligned with markets.

4

Active portfolio management

Throughout our history, we have sought to grow and strengthen the business through acquisition. That remains the case. The acquisition of existing assets and businesses is typically seen as a more attractive growth path than greenfield investment. But we are also willing to dispose of businesses that cannot meet our performance standards or that have more value to others.

5

The best talent

ArcelorMittal’s success will depend on the quality of our people, and our ability to engage, motivate and reward them. As explained in outcomes 1 and 9, we are committed to investing in our people and ensuring a strong leadership pipeline. We will continue to improve our processes to attract, develop and retain the best talent.

Action 2020

On February 5, 2016, we announced our Action 2020 plan, which represents a strategic roadmap for each of our main business segments. The Action 2020 plan is over and above our ongoing management gains plan (which targets cost savings relating to reliability, fuel rate, yield and productivity) and seeks to deliver real structural improvements unique to our business. The plan targets an improvement in our operating results of $3 billion by 2020, based on current steel spreads and raw materials prices. We expect to generate improvements through a combination of cost optimisation, volume gains and product mix enhancement.

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Our 10 sustainable development outcomes

As the world’s leading steel and mining company, we have a major contribution to make towards a more sustainable future. Our 10 sustainable development outcomes are a compelling, practical and demanding way to do this, from the way we make steel and use resources, to how we develop new products, and support our people and our communities.

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