Press Release – March 24, 2000

Midland, Mich. – March 24, 2000 — Further strengthening its commitment to the global polyurethanes business, The Dow Chemical Company has reached a definitive agreement to acquire General Latex and Chemical Corporation.

General Latex is one of the largest rigid polyurethane systems suppliers in North America and a leader in rigid polyurethane foam formulations. The company also is a leading supplier of custom compounds produced from natural and synthetic latex.

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

According to Bob Wood, global vice president, Dow Polyurethanes*, “The acquisition of General Latex expands Dow Polyurethanes’ rigid foam systems house capability for customers in North America. In addition, this development, coupled with our recent acquisition of Flexible Products Company, truly solidifies our commitment to leadership in the systems and formulated polyurethane products industry worldwide.”

Wood adds, “The acquisition of General Latex expands our critical mass for polyurethane systems and formulated products in a variety of industries, including appliance, transportation and construction. This will allow us to better develop new and innovative applications, while continuing to grow our overall polyurethanes market segments.”

In a press release issued on Feb. 18, 2000, Dow announced its acquisition of Flexible Products Company, one of the largest polyurethane systems suppliers in North America and a leader in custom polyurethane foam formulations and dispersing technology.

General Latex, headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., has annual sales of more than $100 million. The company operates six manufacturing sites in North America: Ashland, Ohio; Brampton, Ontario; Billerica, Mass.; Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.; Dalton, Ga.; and Charlotte, N.C.

Bill Jefferson, president, General Latex, notes, “Customers can be assured that throughout this transition they will receive the same high level of quality products and services as they have in the past. The added global capabilities and technical expertise that Dow provides clearly demonstrate our commitment to meeting customer needs on a long-term basis.”

The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter, pending regulatory reviews.

Dow Polyurethanes is a leading supplier of polyurethane systems and raw materials, with 36 manufacturing sites worldwide, and has some of the largest production capabilities in North America.

The Dow Chemical Company is a global science and technology based company that develops and manufactures a portfolio of chemical, plastic and agricultural products and services for customers in 162 countries around the world. With annual sales of more than $19 billion, Dow conducts its operations through 14 global businesses employing 39,000 people. The company has 123 manufacturing sites in 32 countries and supplies more than 2,400 products. For more news and information about Dow, please visit our Web site at

*Dow Polyurethanes, a business group of The Dow Chemical Company