I’ve traveled the New Jersey Turnpike more times than I care to remember, and the funniest landmark I’ve seen was a billboard at the entrance to an urban industrial landscape: Trenton Makes It; The World Takes It.
The way the global demand for steel has heated up, Cleveland might be able to claim the same mantra. I refer, of course, to the iron ore and coking coal sensation Cleveland-Cliffs
This type of growth is uncommon for the 160-year-old company, so what’s behind its newfound success? Exhibiting the same knack for market timing that made Agnico-Eagle
Under the direction of CEO Joseph Carraba, who spent 22 years with Rio Tinto
However, because of its concentration around the Great Lakes, North American iron ore is not well-suited to feed global demand. With that in mind, Cleveland has branched out into Australia and Brazil, adding significant size and geographic diversification in the process.
Supply shortfalls for coking coal are even more acute than they are for iron ore at present. Cleveland-Cliffs made two key acquisitions in the U.S. last summer, and began production at the Sonoma Mine in Australia last quarter. Cleveland now has 9% of the U.S. metallurgical coal market share, compared with 21% for big dog Alpha Natural Resources
Unlike its steelmaking customers, Cleveland-Cliffs is plain loving it as prices balloon for iron ore and coking coal. With supply shortfalls expected to last several years, Cleveland-Cliffs could be in the right place at the right time.
Further core Foolishness: