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Heidelberg Expands its Position in the Finishing Market

Press release from the issuing company

Takeover of Swedish company IDAB WAMAC International AB broadens portfolio of mailroom products for the newspaper printing industry October 15, 2002 -- With effect from September 1st 2002 Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) will take over the Swedish engineering company IDAB WAMAC International AB (IDAB WAMAC). This company specializes in mailroom products for the newspaper printing industry. The takeover will allow Heidelberg to expand its portfolio of finishing products in this market segment and to offer comprehensive mailroom solutions. This includes everything from conveying, buffering, storing and inserting newspaper supplements to addressing, stacking, packaging, sorting and loading the finished products. The systems are designed and manufactured in Eksjö, Sweden. There is an office in Stockholm for sales and marketing and for software development. IDAB WAMAC employs 120 staff and the company's total annual sales in 2001 came to Euro 35 million. The parties have agreed not to publicize the takeover conditions. The global market for mailroom products is estimated at around Euro 500 million. The acquisition of IDAB WAMAC gives Heidelberg a market share of 12%, which corresponds to around Euro 60 million. Up till now, Heidelberg has addressed mainly the North American market. IDAB WAMAC is particularly strong in Asia and Europe. "The takeover over of IDAB WAMAC puts us in a position to offer competitive and innovative mailroom solutions worldwide. It is a logical continuation of our corporate strategy to become a market leader in the finishing sector", explains Bernhard Schreier, Chairman of Heidelberg's Management Board. "Together we make a strong team. IDAB WAMAC is a leading provider of complete mailroom systems and Heidelberg, with its global customer service network, can take care of service aspects and spare parts", Mr. Schreier adds. Heidelberg will continue to serve the American market from its Durham site. The site has around 80 staff working on mailroom products. Heidelberg plans to target the European and Asian markets from Eksjö, Sweden. The joined portfolio covers every need of the modern mailroom. Buffer and storage systems are provided in different versions from IDAB WAMAC as well as conveyors, stacker, packaging and loading dock equipment. Heidelberg has a large installed base of inserters in the U.S. market and introduced a year ago the Magnapak, an inserter for up to 80 hoppers, fully servo driven with optional dual out and polywrapping capabilities. IDAB WAMAC offers the PST6000 with up to 8 pockets, addressing the European and Asian marketplace. A special strength of IDAB WAMAC is the WNC5 mailroom control system with open architecture and interfacing capabilities. Complete solutions for the newspaper market Since Drupa 2000, Heidelberg has been offering the Mainstream 80, a high performance newspaper press that can be complemented by IDAB WAMAC’s fast mailroom system. The value of newspapers must be increased both for advertisers and readers with the help of cross media solutions in order to keep electronic and digital competition at distance. No doubt, Newspaper has a number of unique selling propositions like portability, instant usage, low price per copy. Making use of them requires highly efficient logistic, streamlined and integrated processes and a robust and reliable production environment. Much of the final product is defined, produced and customized in the Mailroom. It is an important key to securing additional revenue for the publisher." explains Dr. Jürgen Rautert, Head of the Postpress Division at Heidelberg "The acquisition of IDAB WAMAC puts us in a position to play a leading role supporting future newspaper developments", he adds. The postpress (finishing) sector is one of the growth areas set out in Heidelberg's three-pronged strategy. Heidelberg employs around 1,700 staff in this market segment and sales last year amounted to Euro 378 million worldwide. The company's aim is to increase this figure significantly over the next few years. The IDAB WAMAC takeover will complement and expand Heidelberg's existing portfolio. This should serve as the basis for further acquisitions and co-operations in the future. The finishing solutions market that Heidelberg is targeting has a total worldwide volume of around Euro 3 billion. “We welcome Heidelberg as the new owner of IDAB WAMAC. A strong owner from the graphic arts industry will give our customers the trust, credibility and support which is essential for a long-term relation” says UC Edberg, Managing Director of IDAB WAMAC. About IDAB WAMAC International AB The company was founded in 1958. Today, IDAB WAMAC is a world leader in the supply of mailroom systems for newspaper printing industry. It delivers automatic systems and in-house developed software to control processes for newspaper flow, inserting, storing, bundle production, and sorting & loading. IDAB WAMAC's registered office is in Sweden, and it has subsidiaries in Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Hamburg and London. The company operates globally, its most important markets being Europe, and the industrialised regions of Asia.