HBI Facility Launch to Benefit Steel in Great Lakes Region

A Cleveland-based iron ore mining company recently broke ground on its first hot-briquetted iron (HBI) production facility in the Toledo area.

Lourenco Goncalves, chairman, president, and CEO of Cleveland-Cliffs

Cleveland-Cliffs hosted company officials and state and local representatives to launch construction on the plant, which is expected to produce 1.6 million metric tons per year of customized, high-quality HBI. This will make Cleveland-Cliffs the sole producer of high-quality customized feedstock for the domestic electric arc furnace (EAF) steelmakers located in the Great Lakes region.

“Today we are launching a new era for the iron and steel industry in the United States,” said Lourenco Goncalves, chairman, president, and CEO of Cleveland-Cliffs of the $700 million investment. “As Cleveland-Cliffs begins the construction of the first hot-briquetted iron (HBI) production plant in the Great Lakes region, we are taking the initial steps to enable EAF steelmakers to produce the specs associated with high margin steels for sophisticated end markets, such as automotive and others.”

“For several decades, Cleveland-Cliffs has been supplying the American steelmakers in the Great Lakes with customized pellets to feed their blast furnaces,” Goncalves added. “With the growth in participation of EAFs, it was just a matter of time for Cliffs to become a supplier of these important steelmakers. Our HBI will be for the EAFs the same great feedstock our taconite pellets are, and will continue to be, for our blast furnace clients.”

“This facility is an important step for economic development in heavy industry right here in the heart of America,” said Ohio congresswoman Marcy Kaptur.

Founded in 1847, Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. is the largest and oldest independent iron ore mining company in the United States, supplying iron ore pellets to the North American steel industry from mines and pellet plants located in Michigan and Minnesota. Additionally, Cleveland-Cliffs operates an iron ore mining complex in Western Australia.


Pictured L-R: Clifford Smith, Executive Vice President, Business Development, Cleveland-Cliffs Inc.; Dean Monske, President and CEO, Regional Growth Partnership; Paul Toth, President and CEO, Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority; Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, U.S. House of Representatives (OH-09); Lourenco Goncalves, Chairman, President & CEO, Cleveland-Cliffs Inc.; Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz – City of Toledo; Peter Ujvagi, Toledo City Councilman; and Alex Johnson, CEO & President, Midwest Terminals. (Photo: Business Wire)