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The steel trader is still trying to refinance $1.25 billion in syndicated loans that matured in June this year, and uncertainty surrounds the future of the company’s Indian iron ore assets.

In addition, group chairman Ralph Oppenheimer, 72, retired in September, after 31 years at the helm.

And with further job cuts, divestments and a hard-nosed refocusing of the business on the cards, Stemcor’s new ceo Julian Verden certainly faces a considerable challenge in the coming months.

Stemcor declined to comment.