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A U.S. Corporation, Once One of the Largest in the World, Has Been Sold to a Japanese Company: 'Best Days Are Ahead, Together' U.S. Steel has been bought by Japan's largest steelmaker, Nippon Steel.

By Sam Silverman

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Justin Merriman/Bloomberg via Getty Images
The United States Steel Corp. Edgar Thomson Works steel mill in Braddock, Pennsylvania, US, on Monday, Aug. 14, 2023.

U.S. Steel, which was once the largest corporation in the world and one of the first major American conglomerates, has been bought by Japanese steel maker, Nippon Steel.

The sale, worth $14.1 billion, comes after years of decline for the 122-year-old company, per CNN.

"We are confident that … this combination is truly best for all," U.S. Steel CEO David Burritt told investors in a conference call on Monday, according to the outlet. "Today's announcement also benefits the United States — ensuring a competitive, domestic steel industry, while strengthening our presence globally," he said, adding, "US Steel's best days are ahead, together."

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Despite selling to an overseas company, U.S. Steel will hold on to its name and keep its headquarters in Pittsburgh.

U.S. Steel was first owned by Andrew Carnegie before it was bought by J.P. Morgan and Charles Schwab in 1901. It was the world's first company to be valued at over $1 billion.

The company was a resource for the U.S. and provided steel for buildings, infrastructure, automobiles, appliances, and more during and after World War II when European steelmakers struggled to recover after the war.

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The company peaked during war times, with 340,000 employees in 1943, CNN reported in August. U.S. Steel made 35.8 million tons of steel in 1953, but in 2022 the company only shipped 11.2 million tons of steel and only has 15,000 U.S. employees.

U.S. Steel was surpassed by Nucor Steel years ago as the country's largest steelmaker.

U.S. Steel has also faced pressures to keep up with the changing industry landscape as people move to use more electric energy as traditional steelmaking is known to produce intense carbon emissions. U.S. Steel didn't open its first electric arc furnace until 2020.

Following the news of the sale, U.S. Steel jumped 28% in premarket trading.

Sam Silverman

Content Strategy Editor

Sam Silverman is a content strategy editor at Entrepreneur Media. She specializes in search engine optimization (SEO), and her work can be found in The US Sun, Nicki Swift, In Touch Weekly, Life & Style and Health. She writes for our news team with a focus on investigating scandals. Her coverage and expertise span from business news, entrepreneurship, technology, and true crime, to the latest in entertainment and TV news. Sam is a graduate of Lehigh University and currently resides in NYC. 

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