MATHESON has entered into an agreement with Nucor Corporation to supply tonnage oxygen, nitrogen and argon to the company’s mini-mill steel facility in Norfolk, Nebraska.

The deal will see MATHESON construct a new air separation unit (ASU) at the site in Norfolk, augmenting existing packaged gas and bulk operations in the states of Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, South Dakota, North Dakota and Kansas.

“This ASU reflects the drive by MATHESON to further develop and reinforce our existing industrial gas network in the northern plains of the US,” stated Scott Kallman, President and CEO of MATHESON.

“With the start-up of the Norfolk ASU, MATHESON will continue implementation of our vertical integration strategy that began with the acquisition of Nebraska-based Linweld in 2006, which established safe and reliable cylinder gas and welding supply products distribution in the region.”

The ASU complex in Norfolk is scheduled for completion in December 2018, and will be constructed, owned and operated by MATHESON.

This will supplement the company’s third-largest share of the market in the US Plains region, where it generated sales of over $250m in 2016 according to gasworld Business Intelligence. James Barr, Senior Business Analyst at gasworld, observed, “This is MATHESON’s second new capacity announcement since it vastly increased its production capabilities through the purchase of the divested Air Liquide and Airgas assets. The company announced an agreement in late-2016 to build, own and operate an ASU to support Lotte Chemical Louisiana LLC in Lake Charles.”

MATHESON Senior Vice-President, Nigel McMullen, added, “MATHESON’s investment in building this new ASU demonstrates our commitment to a long term relationship not only with Nucor but also with our current customer base in the region.”