Emilio Riva

Managing Director

15+ years in managing steel operations
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Prior to founding Steel Hub, for more than ten years Emilio was on the Executive Board of one of Europe’s major steel producers. In his position, he led the internal and external consulting teams tasked with the Group’s major investment programs for ramping up production and the revamping of several steel production units. He also coordinated technical collaboration projects with Nippon Steel Corporation and POSCO South Korea. Furthermore, Emilio advised the shareholders of Essar Steel on reducing cost and increasing profitability.
In summary, Emilio deeply understands both the internal steel plant’s perspective as well as the external advisor’s approach. Now, he leverages his experience for Steel Hub, which provides technical efficiency consulting services to steel manufacturers around the world. Emilio is dedicated to gathering the most capable talents in the steel industry to achieve breakthrough results for his clients.

Emilio holds an MBA from Bocconi University Milan.

Dr Jörg Leib

Head of Consulting Services

5+ years as a top management consultant in the basic materials industries
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Jörg leads Steel Hub’s consulting services, leveraging his project management and analytical skills to coordinate the Steel Hub technical improvement teams in steel plants around the world. Furthermore, he helps translate the identified and implemented technical efficiency improvements into financial impact indicators for communication to senior project stakeholders in plant management and company boards.

Prior to serving Steel Hub, Jörg worked for five years as a consultant for the world’s leading management consulting firm, McKinsey & Company. As a project manager and growth analyst, he advised clients in the chemical, energy and steel industries in Europe, Asia and the US on challenges in corporate finance and strategy.

Jörg’s project track record includes (selection) developing a growth strategy for two European steel manufacturers to identify the most promising geographies, industries and products for growth; crafting a growth strategy for a European medium-sized industrial goods manufacturer supplying to customers in the mining and oil and gas industries; developing the business unit strategy of a European specialty chemicals company, with a focus on industrial minerals and the emerging markets; conducting synergy valuation and preparing value capture in the US and in Europe as part of a transatlantic merger in the chemical industry, and analyzing (plastics) waste treatment technologies on their potentials to reduce plastics waste flows into the oceans in China and the Philippines.
Jörg holds a PhD in climate economics from Imperial College London and studied economics in Heidelberg, Bonn (Germany) and Jyväskylä (Finland).

Technical experts

(example selection of Steel Hub experts)

Project Manager Automation

30+ years in automation and process control in the steel industry
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Specializing in automation, instrumentation, and process control activities in steel plants, our expert has focused on the organization and management of development teams for complex hardware and software projects, with the objective of creating integrated automation and process control systems in the steel industry. Our expert has been involved in projects linked to Industry 4.0, in particular communication networks, software-defined data centre structures and virtualization systems. His experience includes:
Automation/Instrumentation/Process Control Systems/Cyber Security Strategies/Rolling long products/Continuous casting long products /Cold rolling processes flat products/Hot-dip galvanizing processes/Pickling processes /Static annealing coils/Coke Plant processes/Water treatment plants/Fume and dust abatement systems/Plant of gas cryogenic /Energy Distribution plants/Automation, Instrumentation, Process Control, and computing. /OT Infrastructures/LAN & WIFI infrastructures/industrial LAN & Field BUS/field instrumentation/electro-instrumental installations.
Our expert provides the full breadth and depth of IT skills, including all relevant software and coding systems, necessary to deliver his expertise efficiently and effectively. Amongst others, our expert has worked with ILVA, Riva Group and BM automation.

EAF Operations Expert

40+ years in EAF operations and continuous casting
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Our expert started his career in 1980 as an EAF and Continuous Casting Shift Worker and soon got promoted to positions as Shift Head, Assistant Chief Steel Mill and Head of Production department at various mills. In 2001, he for the first time became steel plant manager, responsible for managing the production of 900 ktpa and 100 staff members. In 2003, he moved to another mill and, in his responsibility as the plant manager, was overseeing the commissioning of the new EAF. In the following years, our expert grew more into a consultant role, advising various steel plants in Europe as an interim plant manager on key technical transitions. In plants in Italy, France and Eastern Europe he has overseen the production of quality steels for CCM and pit casting, plant commissionings and large-scale investments and managed a plant during challenging times of ownership change.

During his 40 years of industry experience, our expert has gained his hands-on expertise from working inside major steel plants on production, maintenance and technical supervision. Furthermore, our expert has considerable experience in managing large teams with 400+ people. This has honed his ability to organize efficient team structures and delegate effectively. At the same time, he sets great value on capability training and empowering and motivating people.

While our expert is well-versed in all technical matters around EAF operations and continuous casting, in his experience very often “soft” and low-cost initiatives that boost operator productivity can have a highly significant impact on plant efficiency.

Galvanizing Senior Expert

35+ years in galvanizing
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Our expert is a galvanizing senior expert and probably belongs to the circle of the most senior galvanizing experts available in the world. He is a process and operations manager for galvanizing and pickling lines in the flat products division.

He started working on hot deep galvanizing already in 1980. Due to his talent, his employer selected him for a high-profile professional education program and sent him to world-leading steel manufacturer Nippon Steel Corporation (Japan), where he was introduced to Nippon Steel’s best practices on production of galvanized sheets for the automotive industry. Five years later, he was sent back to his company headquarter as a galvanizing lead technologist to supervise the construction of the new hot deep galvanizing line in close collaboration with Japanese technicians from Nippon Steel. Our expert spent several periods in a Nippon Steel plant in Japan to acquire various skill on the production and management systems for galvanized steel production for the automotive industry.

In 1994, our expert was appointed as production manager of his company’s hot deep galvanising line and developed new steels for the automotive industry. In 1996, he became production director with responsibility for quality assurance of all automotive products (both hot deep galvanizing and cold rolling).

In June 1998, our expert changed company and commissioned a new hot deep galvanising line. In 2001, he became general manager responsible for the hot deep galvanizing line and the pickling line.

From 2004 to 2008, our expert served Danieli as a consultant project manager, responsible for design and development of its hot deep galvanising line furnace. From 2009 to 2010, he also offered trainings on the hot deep galvanizing line. In 2011, he worked as a consultant serving Turkish plants, where he signed responsible for training and production on their hot deep galvanizing pickling lines. In 2012, he returned to Danieli’s commissioning department, where he contributed to plant commissioning in various locations around the world, including hot deep galvanizing and Galvalume lines in China, EU and Vietnam.

In 2017, our expert served as a quality consultant for a year for a Chinese galvanizing line which needed to produce automotive exposed panels for the European market.

In 2018, he resumed his role as process technologist with Danieli. Since 2015, our expert has also been supporting a South East Asia steel producer as a process technologist in commissioning a galvanizing line. In 2019, he served the client by commissioning of a cold rolling and galvanized complex plant.

Cold Rolling Senior Expert

40+ years in cold rolling
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Our expert is a cold rolling senior specialist. His expertise covers pickling line, tandem mill, reversible mill (one and two stands), batch annealing, temper mill and roll shop.
Our expert started his career in 1978 as a cold rolling mill operator. During the following ~20 years, he expanded his cold rolling mill expertise in various roles as a cold rolling shift leader and Head of Cold Rolling Department. He revamped the tandem mill from discontinuous four stands to pickling coupled rolling mill. In his latest role as the company’s Cold Rolling Production Manager, he was responsible for the pickling coupled rolling mill, acid regeneration, water treatment, the roll shop and warehouse black coil. For the following 15 years, our expert served as a cold rolling technologist. As a production and maintenance manager of the cold rolling area, he took care of the continuous tandem rolling mill, sixth reversible mill, two stands reversible mill, roll shop, batch annealing and the skin pass mill. Furthermore, he introduced a number of quality improvements to the production process, and gave cold rolling training courses.
In between, our expert served Danieli and revamped pickling lines at two of its plants. More recently, he has been serving as a Cold Rolling Technical Consultant. For instance, he served plants in Turkey, Russia, Austria on various projects, reaching from launching a temper mill over increasing the productivity of a reversible mill and batch annealing to revamping a roll coolant. He also is the Production and Maintenance Manager Cold Rolling Area of a plant in Italy, where he is responsible for assembly and commissioning of the continuous tandem mill, batch annealing and the temper mill.

Our expert has published two books on cold rolling and is experienced in staff training activities.

Long Products Continuous Casting Expert

30+ years in EAF operations and continuous casting
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Our expert is an experienced continuous casting consultant. As a proven metallurgist with a track record of 30+ years of industry experience, he has accumulated considerable technical knowledge, especially in continuous casting. He blends his technical expertise with various office-based support services including including preparation of technical and training documents, guarantees, calculations, sales support etc. From 1988 till 2000, our expert has worked in continuous casting departments in steel plants in the UK, Australia and Switzerland. Since 2000, he has been offering his services as a metallurgical consultant to billet and bloom casting machine builders and operators around the world. His advisory portfolio includes:

– Optimization and trouble-shooting of process for quality and operation
– Performing cold, hot and product tests including provisional and final acceptance
– Designing and installing casting parameters
– Practical and theoretical training of operators, supervisors and managers
– Preparation of technical documentation including metallurgical manuals and training manuals
– Providing input to the basic design concept for continuous casting machines based on clients’ steel grades and production requirements
– Specifications relating to processing conditions such as water-cooling requirements, casting speed etc

Energy Management Expert

15+ years in managing energy efficiency programs
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Our expert focuses on implementing systems that generate sustainable energy efficiency in the steel industry. He also has hands-on experience in the implementation of quality improvement and defects reduction systems in steel plants. Our expert has expertise in handling and interpreting sensitive and complex data. He is able to set appropriate energy efficiency targets fed by benchmarks. He helps monitoring of energy usage on a continuous basis to ensure that gains in energy efficiency and cost reductions are sustainable. He also designs new plants. When managing systems to improve operating and maintenance practices, he is working with teams including both fellow employees as well as subcontractors.
Our expert showed an especially impressive steel project track record during his period of employment with ILVA. Spells at Turboden and 4 Champions added knowledge to his understanding of energy efficiency in a wider industrial setting. Our expert’s training also included systems and auditing under the ISO 50001 regime, and propulsion in an aerospace context.

Our expert holds a Master’s degree in aerospace engineering.

EAF Filtration System and Thermal Recovery Technologist

30+ years in EAF dust systems coordination
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– De-dusting systems manager including undertaking installations
– Construction, coordination and testing of primary and secondary fumes for the kiln with steel 250 ton
– Smoke system revamping, new secondary hood, dioxins abatement plant
– New fume filtration system on EAF 1 oven
– Revamping and new primary line with quench tower on EAF 2 oven. Sicily steelworks revamping smoke plant
– Steelworks plant upgrade
– Responsibility for filtration systems
– Technical director of a steel plant in Poland and two plants in France
– De-dusting plants for the non-ferrous metals sector, pharmaceutical industries, sterile chambers, integrated cycle steel plants, zinc treatment plants for pipes, cement plants and glassworks
– Abating acid gases, from galvanic, and micro graphic macro laboratories

Scrap management expert

20+ years in scrap management
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Our expert started his career in 1996 as a crane operator and then worked for five years as a classifier in the scrap park and management of baked charge cards. In 2003, he became head of scrap park of a Macedonian steel manufacturer located in Skopje, responsible for managing the incoming material and storage in the parks. In 2009, he returned to Italy, where he became park manager scrap for an Italian steel manufacturer, responsible for scrap storage, classification and preparation of furnace charges.

In 2016, our expert returned to Eastern Europe and swapped sides: In Ukraine, he served a a scrap collecting & scrap processing facility as its deputy operating director and was responsible for +8 collection centres located throughout Ukraine, with the tasks of reorganizing the production process and personnel, optimising the costs of processing and delivery directly to the steelworks.

In-between positions, our expert also served as a consultant, for instance in 2018, when a multinational steel producer sent him to Turkey to reorganize scrap yard and charges management following the acquisition of the steel plant.

Our expert is hands-on and pragmatic in finding practical and cost-effective solutions to improving scrap management, sourcing and treatment procedures. Given his work experience in various countries in Eastern Europe both on the steel manufacturer as well as scrap provider sides, he is very familiar with local culture and management.

Cost Reduction Specialist

25+ years in cost reduction
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Our expert was a Managing Consultant at Hatch Associates. Much of our expert’s focus was on technical improvement and feasibility assessment of new technology, in the context of plant efficiency improvement, cost reduction and profitability.
Our expert was among the pioneers of steel cost research, and designed and built CRU’s first interactive steel cost model that allowed for cost and technical comparisons between conventional and cutting-edge iron and steel plant technologies. He went on to lead a number of global programmes in plant technical research for populating the cost models.

Our expert developed his earlier career as a steel markets analyst, researching a wide range of market sectors for publication, from steelmaking over raw materials to steel product and end user markets.


Metallurgy analysis – laboratory and on-site
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– Continuous casting powder
– Traditional and innovative sintering processes
– Frontier knowledge on metal foams and related processes
– Heat treatments of special steels
– Knowledge of all traditional and innovative techniques of control and characterization of metallic materials
– Chemical analyses
– Metallographic optical and electronic analysis including TEM techniques, Rx diffraction, Rx fluorescence, and mechanical tests
– Physical measurements such as density, thermal analysis, dilatometry
– Knowledge of process steel metallurgy in particular Secondary Metallurgy, Continuous Casting, and rolling mills
– Basic metallurgical problems such as: residual elements, fragility, and control of recrystallization

Rolling mill expert

Rolling mill operations (long products) and quality management
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During his rolling mill career that ultimately led him to the position of head of rolling mill at a plant in Western Europe, our expert has accumulated significant expertise in rolling mill service management, finished products warehouse management and shipping service. He has been responsible for >600 ktpa of production and shipping and has supervised >200 people.

Our expert has held leadership roles in both finance and production, for measuring and achieving budgeted production and logistics KPIs; he was also leading production services, finished product quality, cylinder turning and cage preparation workshops. Furthermore, he is an expert in rolling mill calibration.

By introducing lean management procedures, on one instance our expert managed to reduce downtime and waste. Under his command, the number of production stoppage incidents dropped by 21%, productivity of the two lines increased by 4%, and waste was reduced by 18%, leading to a profit impact of ~250.000 € / year. As another example, he coordinated a 5S project in the rolling mill area with the aim of improving order, cleaning and the risk of accidents; this effort brough a radical change in the mentality of department staff.

Our expert holds a Materials Engineering degree.

Artificial Intelligence Capability Leader

20+ years in artificial intelligence / machine learning works applied to the steel industry
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Our expert is currently responsible for a multi-disciplinary centre that is deeply involved in research activities and cooperation with the process and manufacturing industries. He is both the Technical Research Manager and a senior researcher at the associated research institute.
Our expert has more than 20 years of steel sector research experience. He has been involved in 50 projects funded by the EU, in four of which he served as the project coordinator, as well as in manifold projects funded by steel companies. He has co-authored more than 300 papers on steel artificial intelligence applications published in international journals and conferences bulletins.

Our expert’s expertise covers simulation, modelling, control and optimization technologies for industrial applications as well as data pre-processing and data analytics and mining through traditional and artificial intelligence-based techniques. Our expert holds a Masters Degree in Engineering and a PhD in Robotics.

Artificial Intelligence Expert

15+ years in artificial intelligence / machine learning applications in the steel industry
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Our expert is a research fellow and is deeply involved in research activities and cooperation with the process and manufacturing industries. He has 16 years experience of steel and manufacturing sector research. He has experience in the field of application of artificial intelligence techniques for industrial data processing, data mining and intelligent systems for industrial automation. His expertise includes mathematical modelling of complex systems, artificial neural networks and optimization methods. Our expert supported about 30 projects funded by the EU as well as several projects directly funded by steel companies. He co-authored more than 100 papers on steel artificial intelligence applications published in international Journals and conference bulletins.

Our expert holds a Masters Degree in Computer Science and a PhD in Industrial and Information Engineering.

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