WHEELING, W.Va. (AP) -- Steelmaker and distributor Esmark Inc. says it's giving the United Steelworkers until Thursday to organize a buyout bid for the company.
Esmark described the extension as a goodwill gesture to the labor union, which has balked at a proposal to sell the Wheeling company to India's Essar Steel Holdings.
Union officials declined immediate comment Tuesday.
Esmark says it granted the extension after a National Labor Relations board arbitrator declined to extend the union's right to bid on the company beyond 52 days. The union and Esmark had filed separate grievances over the Essar sale.
Esmark says the decision clears the way for it to act on competing buyout offers.
Russia's OAO Severstal also is vying to acquire Esmark.