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Forging Success: Navigating Challenges and Opportunities in Conares Metal Supply Ltd. and the Evolving Steel Industry of the UAE and GCC


Task: How can Conares Metal Supply Ltd improve profitability in its rebar business amidst increased competition and rising raw material prices?


I. Introduction

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) have a thriving steel industry that is significant to the region's economy. Rapid urbanisation, strong infrastructure development, and the rising demand for steel products across a variety of sectors have all contributed to the steel industry' notable rise in the UAE and the GCC.

Strategically positioned throughout the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, Conares is a valuable addition to the steel sector portfolio. The company amplifies its significance as a steel supplier in the region with its cutting-edge production facilities located in the Jebel Ali Free Zone and its dedication to producing high-quality steel products. Conares has solidified its name as a reliable exporter to more than 50 nations globally, underscoring its significance in the cutthroat global steel industry. Given the continued rapid growth and development of the UAE and GCC, it is critical to comprehend Conares' role and significance in the steel sector. This report will examine the background, scope, and issues encountered by Conares to offer strategic insights into the company's position and future possibilities in this dynamic market.

II. Conares Metal Supply Ltd: A Comprehensive Overview

Conares Metal Supply Ltd., a major player in the worldwide steel business, was founded in 1988 and is headquartered in Dubai. A wide variety of steel products, such as ERW pipes and tubes, rebar, and color-coated coils, are produced by the company, which has an annual manufacturing capacity of more than 1,500,000 tonnes (Conares About 2023).

Role and Significance within the Steel Industry

Prominent throughout the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, Conares Metal Supply Ltd serves a wide range of sectors, including manufacturing, infrastructure, construction, and oil & gas. The organization's dedication to providing superior steel products has cemented its standing as a reliable global supplier and partner. Conares is able to address the changing needs of its customers at its state-of-the-art production plant located in the Jebel Ali Free Zone with its cutting-edge technology (Sharma 2022).

Current Objectives and Resource Support

Conares Metal Supply Ltd.'s present goals show a proactive drive to expansion and innovation. To achieve these goals, the firm plans to increase manufacturing capacity, widen its product line to include new steel products, and penetrate new markets to increase its global reach. Strong resource allocation from the division/center is necessary to support the accomplishment of these goals. This includes the capital to invest in new machinery, the technical know-how to improve production methods and create new goods, and extensive marketing and sales tools to open up new markets.

Reporting Relationships and Organizational Structure

Conares Metal Supply Ltd. functions under a clearly defined reporting and organisational structure as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Conares Group, a diversified industrial behemoth in the Middle East. The Managing Director, who is in charge of the business, answers directly to the Conares Group CEO. Key departments comprise the three tiers of the organisational structure:

• Production: In charge of producing goods made of steel.

• Marketing and Sales:Tasked with promoting and selling Conares' steel offerings.

• Finance and Administration:Oversees the administration and financial operations of the business.

This methodical approach guarantees efficient operations, clear communication, and a concentration on critical business tasks, all of which enhance Conares' overall performance.

III. Business Scope and Performance

Conares Metal Supply Ltd. (Conares) is a prominent player in the worldwide steel sector, having established a strong foothold in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. Because of its dedication to satisfying the various demands of worldwide markets, the company has a global presence spanning over 50 nations. Oil and gas, manufacturing, infrastructure, construction, and other industries make up a large portion of Conares' clientele.

A wide range of products is available from Conares, such as:

1. Rebars:Essential parts of infrastructure projects, including the construction of buildings and bridges (Gonzalez et al. 2020).

2. ERW Pipes and TubesUsed to build numerous infrastructure projects, including pipelines and gas and oil wells.

3. Colour Coated Coils: Used for cladding, roofing, and other construction-related purposes.

4. Other Steel Products: Consisting of galvanised steel coils, cold-rolled coils, and hot-rolled coils.

Performance Trends of Conares Metal Supply Ltd

In recent times, Conares has seen strong expansion, suggesting that its performance is on an upward track. From AED 4.5 billion to AED 5.2 billion, the company's sales increased significantly between 2017 and 2018. Conares also reported an increase in net profit during the same time, going from AED 300 million to AED 350 million (Menon 2020). Conares has had significant growth due to several factors such as the growing demand for steel goods in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia; its modern manufacturing facilities; its concentration on high-quality products and customer service; and its successful marketing and sales tactics.

Position in the Industry/Market Compared to Competitors

As a major steel supplier and manufacturer in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, Conares enjoys a notable standing. Conares sets itself apart from competitors by focusing on innovation, customer service, and high-quality goods, even in the face of competition from regional and global players like Emirates Steel, ArcelorMittal, Nippon Steel, POSCO, and ThyssenKrupp. A competitive advantage that contributes to the company's leadership position is its strong presence in important regions.

Business Model Analysis with Relevant Tables

Business Model Elements:

1. Wide Range of Products: With such a wide range of products, Conares can serve a large number of clients.

2. State-of-the-Art Manufacturing Facility: Its state-of-the-art production plant gives the corporation a cost advantage over rivals (Menon 2020).

3. Strong Marketing and Sales Team: Conares increases its market share and successfully acquires new clients.

4. Focus on Customer Service: Retention of customers and long-term partnerships are enhanced by a strong focus on customer care.

SWOT Analysis of Conares:





Strong brand recognition

High production costs

Growing demand in emerging markets.

Increased competition from regional and international steel companies (Menon 2020).

Wide range of products

Lack of presence in developed markets.

Government support for the steel industry.

Rising raw material prices

State-of-the-art facility

Relatively low economies of scale

Expanding product portfolio

Fluctuations in global steel prices

Strong marketing and sales

Reliance on a few key customers

Entering new markets

Geopolitical instability

Focus on customer service

Relatively low net profit margin

Economic recession


IV. Key Issues, Challenges, and Opportunities

Conares Metal Supply Ltd. (Conares), operating in the worldwide steel sector, faces a demanding environment characterised by both internal and external influences.

External Factors:

• Increased Competition:Steel businesses in the region and beyond that have large production capacity a global presence and a competitive advantage pose a serious threat to Conares.

• Rising Raw Material Prices: Growing costs for Conares' production have an impact on profitability since they are a result of rising prices for important raw materials like coal and iron ore.

• Fluctuations in Global Steel Prices: : Conares faces difficulties in forecasting its sales and production, which impairs financial estimates due to the fluctuations in the world steel price.

• Geopolitical Instability: Conares is exposed to possible business operations disruptions and trade challenges due to its operations in regions prone to geopolitical instability, including in the Middle East and Asia.

Internal Factors:

• High Production Costs: Conares faces challenges in maintaining a competitive edge over lower-cost competitors due to its relatively high manufacturing costs, which are a result of increased expenses surrounding raw materials and energy.

• Reliance on a Few Key Customers: Conares is more susceptible to the financial difficulties these clients have because a sizable amount of its revenue comes from a select group of important clients.

• Relatively Low Net Profit Margin: Strong competition and high production costs present Conares with a challenge of having a relatively low net profit margin, which restricts the amount of money available for expansion and reinvestment.

Identification of Key Issues, Challenges, and Opportunities

Key Issues:

1. Exorbitant production expenses

2. Dependence on certain important clients

3. The net profit margin is relatively modest.


1. Heightened rivalry between domestic and foreign steel firms

2. Increasing costs of basic resources

3. Varying costs for steel around the world


1. Increasing steel product demand in developing economies

2. The steel industry receives government support.

3. Increasing the range of items offered

4. Venturing into new markets

Consideration of External and Internal Factors Influencing the Business

External Factors:

• Competition:Global rivalry for Conares has increased.

• Raw Material Prices:The cost of production is affected by price increases.

• Global Steel Prices: When planning, fluctuations might be difficult.

• Geopolitical Instability: Possible disturbances in the Middle East and Asia.

Internal Factors:

• Production Costs: Elevated expenses as a result of energy and raw materials.

• Customer Concentration: Reliance on a small number of important clients.

• Profitability: Due to competition, low net profit margin.

V. Focus on Selected Business Subset

Production and sales of rebar constitute one of Conares Metal Supply Ltd.'s (Conares) core business segments. Buildings, bridges, highways, dams, and other structures all benefit greatly from the reinforcement and increased ductility provided by rebars, which are crucial elements in the construction of reinforced concrete structures.

Performance and Trend Analysis Specific to Rebars

In the last few years, Conares' rebar business has done well. Sales of rebar brought in AED 1.5 billion in income in 2017; by 2018, that amount had increased to AED 1.8 billion. Additionally, during the same period, net profit from sales of rebar increased, rising from AED 200 million to AED 250 million (Menon 2020).

Several reasons are responsible for this growth:

• Increasing Demand: The Middle East, Africa, and Asia have witnessed a surge in the demand for rebar.

• Focus on Quality and Customer Service:The prosperity of Conares' rebar business may be attributed to its concentration on providing top-notch goods and outstanding customer service.

• State-of-the-Art Manufacturing Facility: Conares's capacity to produce rebars has increased as a result of its investment in an advanced manufacturing facility.

• Marketing and Sales Capabilities: The company has relied on strong marketing and sales methods to properly promote its rebar products.

Unique Challenges and Opportunities within the Rebar Subset


• Increased Competition: The increased rivalry from local and foreign steel mills is a significant obstacle for Conares' rebar industry. An advantage over rivals with large production capacity and worldwide reach is their global presence.

• Rising Raw Material Prices: • Rising Raw Material Prices:


• Growing Demand: The projected rise in demand in emerging markets especially in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia caused by urbanisation and infrastructure development presents Conares with a sizable opportunity, notwithstanding several obstacles.

• Brand Reputation and Quality: Conares can set itself apart from competitors in the market by leveraging its solid brand recognition, premium products, and cutting-edge production facility.

VI. Managerial Question

Selection of One Important Issue, Challenge, or Opportunity

The improvement of profitability is a major difficulty that Conares Metal Supply Ltd. (Conares) must overcome in its rebar business. Although the rebar industry plays a major role in the overall profitability of the company, it faces increased competition from both domestic and foreign steel businesses as well as the effect of rising raw material prices.

Managerial Question:

1. How can Conares improve profitability in its rebar business?

Due to its direct correlation with a crucial issue facing the organisation, this managerial question assumes a central role. It is therefore necessary for Conares to address and improve profitability in the rebar business to strengthen this important segment and improve the company's aggregate financial performance.

Possible Solutions

To address the managerial query, several viable approaches could be considered:

• Investing in New Technologies: Adopting cutting-edge technologies would allow Conares to lower costs in the rebar industry while increasing production efficiency (Conares handles over 10 million tonnes of steel over the past 10 years 2021).

• Expanding the Rebar Product Portfolio: Gaining a wider market share can be achieved by expanding the range of products offered by rebar and adding in-demand commodities like stainless steel and high-strength rebars.

• Entering New Markets: The rebar category can find new sources of income and market share by locating and joining quickly rising areas, especially in Latin America and Africa.

• Strengthening Brand Reputation: One way to gain a competitive edge is to concentrate on enhancing the Conares brand's reputation through a dedication to premium goods, exceptional customer support, and creative methods.


Conares must develop a strategic strategy that guarantees the best use of its resources to implement these solutions. As needed, the company will be able to quickly adapt the plan thanks to routine performance monitoring of the rebar industry.

VII. Recommendations

1. Reduce Production Costs: It is recommended that Conares take action to lower production costs to increase profitability. To maximise the production of rebar, this calls for investments in cutting-edge technologies like automated welding equipment. Parallel to this, securing advantageous raw material pricing through long-term contracts with suppliers can improve total cost-effectiveness.

2. Expand Product Portfolio: The rebar product portfolio must be diversified to draw in more business and command higher prices. Conares can look into producing specialised goods like corrosion-resistant stainless steel rebars with a longer lifespan or high-strength rebars designed for infrastructure projects. This calculated strategy seeks to meet the needs of a growing market while also setting Conares apart from rivals.

Additional Considerations: Along with the main suggestions, Conares ought to investigate the following strategic directions:

• Vertical Integration: The rebar company might be vertically integrated by purchasing coal mines and iron ore. Conares' exposure to changing raw material costs would be reduced by this action, which would give it more control over its supply chain

• Partnerships: Conares' product line could be expanded by looking into strategic alliances with manufacturers further downstream. One way to create new revenue streams is to partner with a downstream manufacturer of completed steel products, such as roofing and cladding.

• Acquisitions: Rapid regional and market share expansion is possible through the acquisition of smaller rebar businesses. Conares' stronghold in the rebar industry may be bolstered by calculated acquisitions.

VIII. Conclusion

IX. References

Administrative review por: 12/1/2017 - 11/30/2018 public document E&C ... (no date) International Trade Administration. Available at:

Conares handles over 10 million tonnes of steel over the past 10 years. (2021), The Zone. Available at:

Gonzalez, A., Schorr, M., Valdez, B. and Mungaray, A., 2020. Bridges: structures and materials, ancient and modern. Infrastructure Management and Construction.

Menon, A. (2020) UAE’s biggest private sector steel manufacturer CONARES aims to double turnover to $544mln, ZAWYA. Available at:

Sharma, A. (2022) CONARES opens $40.8m colour-coated steel plant in Jafza, The National. Available at:


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