The Achievements of Ahmed Ezz, Businessman
Building on his family’s successful steel trading business, Ahmed Ezz – businessman and entrepreneur – established Ezz Steel (EGX: ESRS) in Egypt in 1994. Under his stewardship, the company has become a pioneer for high-grade steel, a diversified product portfolio, and technological innovations in the steelmaking industry in Egypt and the Arab World. Today, Ezz Steel is the Middle East and North Africa’s leading private-sector fully integrated steel producer, and a major player in the international steel market. It produces 5 million tons of finished steel per year and is set to export 1.0 million tons in 2021 (making it Egypt’s premier exporter).
Mr Ezz has been a pioneer for modern steelmaking technologies in the region, being one of the first adopters of EAF (Electric Arc Furnace) and DRI (Direct Reduced Iron) plants. Both contribute to a steelmaking process that is more efficient, flexible, and environmentally friendly compared with traditional blast furnace plants.
In 2008, Mr Ezz made history, becoming the first Arab Iron & Steel Union chairman to come from the private sector.
Mr Ezz’s considerable achievements were recognized when he was awarded the Willy Corf/ Ken Iverson Steel Vision Award in 2010. Presented in New York, the award recognises the industry leader who has contributed most to the development of a local steel industry, turning it into a major global player. Past recipients of the Willy Corf/ Ken Iverson Steel Vision Award include Mr Lakshmi Mittal, chairman of ArcelorMittal, the largest steel producer in the world.
Also in 2010, Ezz Steel featured in World Steel Dynamics Inc.’s list of World Class Steel Makers for the first time. World Steel Dynamics Inc. is a leading steel research and consulting firm, featuring steelmakers on its list that meet specific, challenging performance criteria. Other steelmakers included on the list were the multinational ArcelorMittal, AK Steel of the US, Posco of South Korea, JFE of Japan, and Gerdau of Brazil.
In 2017, Ahmed Ezz was named as ‘Man of the Year’ by the Arab Iron & Steel Union, a prestigious accolade recognising his lifetime achievements and contribution to the Arab steel industry. The award was made based on strong recommendations from steel producers in the region, who citied Mr Ezz as a paradigm for leadership excellence with a deep understanding of the industry.
In 2018 Mr Ezz was further named runner up in the S&P Global Platts Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognizes individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the metals sector throughout the duration of their career.