The Business

Lancaster Steel Service Company, Inc. (“Lancaster”) ( is the largest independent steel service center in New York and is consistently ranked as one of North America’s Top 100 Metals Service Centers. Lancaster has branch locations in Buffalo and Syracuse, New York, and has provided steel products and metal processing services to western and upstate New York and northern Pennsylvania since 1963. Lancaster distributes a full line of steel products, including flat-rolled sheets and coils, plates, merchant bars, structural shapes, pipe and tubing, and reinforcing steel. Lancaster complements its extensive product line with comprehensive metal processing capabilities and services, such as precision blanking, leveling, slitting, shearing, flame and plasma cutting, saw cutting and rebar fabrication. Lancaster’s customers include OEMs, contract manufacturers, construction contractors and other metals service centers.

The Industry

Lancaster participates in the North American metals service center industry, a highly fragmented industry with more than 1,300 companies (consisting of general-line service centers, specialized service centers and processing centers) operating in excess of 3,500 locations. In 2005, buyers purchased a record $47 billion from North America’s Top 100 Metals Service Centers. Ryerson, Inc. is North America’s leading distributor and processor of metals, with 2005 revenues of $5.8 billion.

The Process

Prestwick Partners initiated this transaction and acted as the exclusive financial advisor to Lancaster and its shareholders. Prestwick Partners designed an M&A process, prepared marketing materials, evaluated acquisition proposals and negotiated the transaction with Ryerson, Inc. of Chicago, Illinois. Our process included both domestic and international strategic acquirers.