Brazilian steel-maker Companhia Siderurgica Nacional, which made a failed bid for Corus in 2002, is now offering £5.3bn - 20p a share more than Tata's bid (475p compared with 455p).
Maitland founder Angus Maitland is heading the CSN team, reporting to its board.
Last month, Tata (using Financial Dynamics) and Corus (using Brunswick) looked set to complete a merger that would see the Indian company edge closer to challenging Mittal Steel's industry dominance (PRWeek, 27 Oct).
Combined, the company was to become the world's fifth-largest steel maker, but any deal involving Corus looks set to draw comparisons with Mittal Steel's acquisition of Arcelor - for which Maitland won PRWeek's 2006 City Campaign of the Year.
PROs close to the deal have said that Tata is likely to make the most of its ‘first-mover' advantage, while others suggest CSN could simply be employing a late-bid tactic to up the amount that its rival Tata has to pay.
The CSN bid will again alert Russian firm Severstal, which used Citigate Dewe Rogerson for its IPO this month and is remaining tight-lipped about any potential bid.