Magnetation Inc. will partner with Ohio-based steelmaker AK Steel to expand operations on the Iron Range, including the possibility of a new taconite production plant.
In a $297 million deal, Magnetation, based in Nashwauk, will own 50.1 percent of a new company called Magnetation LLC. It plans to produce taconite pellets at a new plant between Coleraine and Grand Rapids in Itasca County.
Magnetation vice president Matt Lehtinen says it could mean 200 jobs by the end of 2012.
AK Steel officials say the new plant would satisfy about 50 percent of its iron ore pellet requirements, and at a cost well below the current market price.
The Duluth News Tribune ( http://bit.ly/qSfayG) says AK Steel will invest $100 million in the operations this year and nearly $50 million next year.