15/04/04

Würth Group Strengthens Business Units by Taking Over Companies

Nuremberg LICHT Zentrale Thurner GmbH, Austrian fittings-producer Grass in Hoechst and supplier of DIY stores DIY World GmbH from Wuppertal now integrated into the Würth Group - sales volume of a total of 360 million euro - strategic integration into the business units electrical wholesale, trade with DIY stores and production of furniture fittings

Künzelsau. The Würth Group - the worldwide biggest trading company in the field of fasteners and assembly technology based in Künzelsau (Baden-Württemberg) - has strengthened its business units electrical wholesale, trade with DIY stores as well as the production and trade of furniture fittings by taking over three companies with a total of 1,370 employees and a sales volume totaling 360 million euro.

Taking over the Austrian fittings producer Grass in Hoecht/Vorarlberg the Würth Group has enhanced its production activities in the field of furniture fittings, which is already represented in the market by the MEPLA ALFIT Group. Würth has taken over all the operative companies of the Grass Group retrospectively as of 1st March 2004. In the year 2003/2004, Grass generated a sales volume of some 125 million euro with a total of 900 employees. The company is a specialist in the production of furniture fittings and drawer slides for kitchen furniture. Due to the difficult economic situation and a high demand for capital to make necessary investments the Grass Group was forced to offer its company for sale.

The electrical wholesaler LICHT Zentrale Thurner GmbH based in Nuremberg has been assimilated into the electrical wholesale unit of the Würth subsidiary group FEGA/Schmitt. The electrical wholesale unit generated total sales of 523 million euro in 2003.

LICHT Zentrale Thurner GmbH is a specialist in the area of lighting and lamps (outdoor lights, spotlights, projectors, illumination for the work place and designer lighting). With a work force of 100 employees, they generated sales of approximately 60 million euro in 2003. The take-over of LICHT Zentrale, which previously occupied a leading market position in the German lighting sector, will doubtlessly increase the market share of our electrical wholesale unit in the long term.

By taking over the Wuppertal-based DIY World GmbH, we will extend our supply to DIY stores significantly. This company supplies tools, electrical machines, hardware, furniture fittings and gardening tools to all renowned European DIY chains. With a workforce of 370 employees it achieved sales of 175 million euro in 2003.

All three companies purchased will continue to operate as legally independent entities within the Würth Group. The Würth Group owns 294 companies in 80 countries worldwide and attained sales of 5.45 billion euro in the financial year ending 2003.