HYDRO BECOMES WORLD LEADER WITHIN ALUMINIUM BUILDING SYSTEMS

Hydro Aluminium has reached a final agreement to acquire Technal group, a major European player within aluminium building systems, head quartered in Toulouse, France. This finalizes the deal announced on October 30th 2001.

In 2001 the Technal group had a turnover of EURO 275 million, approximately 10 per cent up from 2000. Hydro paid approximately EURO 73 million for the equity of the Technal group and assumed at the same time the EURO 38,3 million debt of Technal.

The Technal group designs, manufactures and markets a broad range of building systems which are used in the fabrication of a variety of products such as doors, windows, facades and conservatories. The Technal group has presence throughout Western Europe including France, Spain, Portugal and the UK as well as export and licensees in a number of countries.

With this acquisition Hydro Building Systems will be the world leader in building systems based on aluminium extrusions, with over 3200 employees and operations in more than 20 countries.

Hydro Building Systems is part of Hydro Aluminium Extrusion, one of the seven business sectors of Hydro Aluminium.

Norsk Hydro ASA, the Norwegian Oil and Energy, Light Metals and Agri group, earlier in January announced an agreement to buy all shares of VAW aluminium AG, the German aluminium company. The acquisition will make Hydro Aluminium one of the world’s top-tier light metal companies, with a leading position in Europe. Total sales in Hydro Aluminium activities after the acquisition will be approximately 10 billion Euro, (NOK 80 billion), and the merged company will employ more than 30,000 persons.

"With the acquisition of the Technal group we will not only be by far the biggest player within aluminium building systems in France and a leading one in the rest of Europe, but also have a strong position for further growth, especially outside Europe," says Jan Fredrik Meling, Executive Vice President of Hydro Aluminium Extrusion and head of Hydro Building Systems, "the Technal brand with its excellent reputation ideally complements our WICONA and DOMAL brand range as well as our geographical spread. It is our intention to stick to our decentralised business concept and run the Technal brand in parallel to our existing Wicona and Domal ones."

Patrick A. Tanguy, Chief Executive Officer of the Technal group, stated," We are pleased to become a part of Hydro Building Systems. We believe that combining the strengths of both companies will accelerate the development of global presence of Hydro Building Systems."

For further information:
www.hydro.com
www.aluminium-extrusion.hydro.com.
www.technal.fr (for Technal Group)

Contact person at Hydro Aluminium Extrusion headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland:
Vagn Grønbjerg, Director Market Communications
Tel.: +41-21-621 8335
Fax: +41-21-621 8343
E-mail: vagn.groenbjerg@hydro.com