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Founded for over 300 years ago

The base of Ovako is built on strong Nordic steel production know-how. The forerunners to Ovako were founded for over 300 years ago: the company has its heritage in the 17th century, when manufacturing began in Hofors, Sweden, followed by Boxholm and Hällefors in the 18th century, and by Smedjebacken in 1856. Read more about Ovako's early history »

During the 20th century the business has been transformed several times, resulting in the privately owned Ovako of today. (Click here to see how the structure has changed.).

Ovako's recent history

June 2018

Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation, a global market leader in steel production with world-leading technology and production capacity, acquired Ovako. 

August 2010

Private equity investor Triton acquired the bar, bright bar, tube and ring businesses of Ovako and formed the new Ovako, excluding the former Wire Division’s operations.

November 2007

Pampus Stahlbeteiligungs acquired sole ownership of Ovako. Pampus Stahlbeteiligungs was owned by Werner Pampus and his family.

November 2006

Ovako was sold to Pampus Industrie Beteiligungen and a Dutch group of investors:  Hombergh Holdings BV shareholders and WP de Pundert Ventures BV.

May 2005

Ovako was established by merging Fundia, Ovako Steel and Imatra Steel. The company was jointly owned by Rautaruukki, SKF and Wärtsilä, combining their long steel businesses.

Ovako's early history


The 1990’s

In 1991 Fundia was bought by Rautaruukki Oy and the Norweigan Norsk Jern Holding A/S. In 1996 Fundia became a wholly owned subsidary of Rautaruukki Oy.

In 1991 SKF became the sole owner of Ovako Steel, while the Imatra operations went on as Imatra Steel.


The 1980’s

In 1981 Smedjebackens Walsverk and the steel production in Boxholms AB were merged into a new company: Smedjebacken-Boxholm Stål AB. In 1988 the company was bought by Welbond (later Fundia). Smedjebacken-Boxholm Stål became Fundia Steel and later Fundia Special Bar AB. 

Fundia Steel took over Hallstahammar AB in order to enable further processing of bars.

In 1986, the group Ovako Steel was founded through a merger between SKF Steel and Ovako.



The 1960-1970’s

Rationalization of the steel business took place world-wide. New steel production technology and automation enabled production of steel of higher quality as well as increased capacity and cost effectiveness.

From the beginning of the 1960’s, the forerunners to Ovako gradually redirected their focus from commercial steel to special steel products. The development required investments in research, product development and quality control.

The works in Smedjebacken, Hofors and Imatra became significant deliverers of steel for the automotive and engineering industries.

In 1969, the Finnish companies Oy Vuoksenniska Ab and Oy Fiskars Ab combined their steel production in a new company, Ovako. Wärtsilä became co-owner of Ovako Oy in 1972.


The early 20th century

High quality bearing steel was produced in Sweden already in the beginning of the 20th century. SKF purchased Hofors Bruk in 1916 and became owner of Hellefors Bruk in 1958.

An iron mill was founded in Imatra, Finland in 1935. Steel production escalated and developed at the Imatra steel works through the industrial war reparation effort. 

Ovako's history

Production at Ovako is the further evolution of metallurgical traditions forged in iron mills founded in the 1600s and 1700s. Over the centuries, these mills grew into major industries and eventually became part of the companies that merged to become today´s Ovako.