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HOME > Value One > Introduction of Group Companies >New Sanko Seisen Limited
Introduction of Group Companies
From Value One, Autumn 2008 No. 22
Established through a joint venture that included Nippon Steel Corporation and Metal One Corporation, New Sanko Seisen specializes in manufacturing steel wire for cold heading (CH steel wire). It is responding to flourishing automotive demand at a highly efficient manufacturing plant adjacent to Nippon Steel's Kimitsu Works.
Contributing to Nippon Steel's Wire Rod Business Strategy

Established through a 2003 joint venture among Sanko Seisen, Nippon Steel, and Metal One, New Sanko Seisen specializes in manufacturing steel wire for cold heading (CH steel wire). With the objective of restructuring its then slumping operations, Sanko Seisen relocated part of its wire drawing facilities to a new plant built on a site adjacent to Nippon Steel's Kimitsu Works in an effort to integrate operations with Metal One and Nippon Steel. Full operations commenced in 2004. An integrated production line that renders wire rods into CH steel wire was built, and the plant was made the Nippon Steel group's CH steel wire production center in the Kanto region. The merits of being able to receive supplies of wire rods directly from the Kimitsu Works include less damage during shipping and flexibility in responding to delivery deadlines.

Moreover, Matsubishi Metal Industry Co., Ltd.-a processor of specialty steel bars and wire that is headquartered in Hamura, Tokyo, and part of the Nippon Steel Group-acquired 20% of New Sanko Seisen's shares in 2005. Katsunori Hase, Matsubishi's president, simultaneously serves as New Sanko Seisen's president. Synergies that make the most of the companies respective areas of expertise are anticipated, with Matsubishi excelling at thick CH steel wire and New Sanko Seisen specializing in narrow varieties, substantially contributing to Nippon Steel's wire rod business strategies.

CH steel wire is premium-quality wire used as the base material for bolts, nuts, and other fasteners in automotive parts. Sustained by flourishing car production, the company's current production volume, including products manufactured for Matsubishi Metal Industry as an original equipment manufacturer (OEM), has reached approximately 5,000 tonnes per month. Its main equipment includes an automatic acid washer, two short time cycle (STC) annealing furnaces, and 30 wire drawing machines. The STC furnaces are used in the heat treatment process. The second of the two furnaces was installed in August and is owned by Matsubishi. It was added so that New Sanko Seisen could act as an OEM for Matsubishi. Sales are mainly handled by Metal One and Metal One Steel Products Corporation.

President Hase says, "There were many travails during the first two years, but with technical guidance from Matsubishi, quality and productivity are both now guaranteed. Matsubishi and New Sanko Seisen will continue to strengthen their supplementary relationship so that New Sanko Seisen can respond to expanded demand, primarily for cars."

Because Japanese car manufacturers have increased their shares worldwide due to concerns over environmental issues and soaring gasoline prices, Japanese CH steel wire, which can be used in manufacturing compact, precisely designed, and extremely strong fasteners, has drawn renewed attention, and demand is expected to grow even more in the future.

President Hase notes, "We have hopes for Metal One's data gathering capabilities and network, naturally, but also for the substantial role that it, as a trading company, serves in accurately assessing market needs so that we may adapt our manufacturing site accordingly." With New Sanko Seisen at the center, there is yet more momentum in building the Nippon Steel-Metal One wire rod value chain.

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