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12/05/2015

PRESS RELEASE: PAUL WURTH REINFORCES ITS PRODUCT PORTFOLIO TO FACE DEMANDING IRONMAKING MARKET

PRESS RELEASE: Paul Wurth reinforces its product portfolio to face demanding ironmaking market

Luxembourg, 12 May 2015. Under the chairmanship of Michel Wurth, the ordinary General Meeting of shareholders of Société Anonyme Paul WURTH was held today on 12 May 2015 to approve amongst others the financial statements of the year 2014.

The further extension of its product and service portfolio towards a global solution provider and new environment and energy-focussed developments allow Paul Wurth Group to meet its customers’ expectations, also in a more difficult market environment.

Economic climate and commercial situation

Although world crude steel production modestly grew in 2014, the investments made by the global steel industry with regard to the construction of new facilities were generally poor. For plant builders like Paul Wurth, member of SMS group, this means a more intense competition in a smaller market.

As a result of major sales efforts and a broad demand-aligned product portfolio, the Paul Wurth Group’s new order intake for the year 2014 equalled 359 million euros, up 6.7% from the level reached in 2013. A significant part of this progression is owed to the well developing servicing business.

Operational activity

Following successful project execution, the new jumbo type coke oven battery together with a complete gas treatment plant came on stream in 2014 at Bhushan Steel in India.

In blast furnace ironmaking, there was a clear trend in 2014 towards repair and modernisation projects. As a result of its many years of experience, Paul Wurth provides tailor-made solutions ranging from ad hoc repairs to complete relines that allow the customers to extend the campaign life of their blast furnaces or upgrade them to meet the latest production standards. In this way, Paul Wurth is currently supporting the ArcelorMittal Group in modernising its hot metal production sites in Algeria, Kazakhstan, Poland, Romania, Czech Republic, the Ukraine and South Africa. In addition, Paul Wurth systematically expanded its range of services in 2014 by opening, respectively reinforcing servicing workshops in India, China and Brazil.

Strategic portfolio expansion

With the target to become a single source supplier also for entire cokemaking plants, Paul Wurth took over in 2014 the cokemaking business of the German Schalker Eisenhütte Maschinenfabrik so as to add coke oven machines to its portfolio of proprietary technologies. This strategic move was promptly rewarded at the beginning of this year by several orders.

Moreover, the signature in spring 2014 of a construction licence agreement for Midrex® direct reduction plants with the Japanese group Kobe Steel turned out to be judicious and led to a first customer order in April 2015 for a project located in Algeria.

R&D activities focussed on environment and energy

Particularly in times of a relatively weak economic climate it is vital to utilise to best advantage the company‘s long-standing innovation culture. Paul Wurth therefore pushed ahead in R&D with the development of new technologies primarily focusing on environmental protection and energy efficiency. Ongoing R&D projects are, for example, the dry granulation of blast furnace slag with energy recovery, the treatment of blast furnace sludge using the Ciroval™ process or the minimisation of NOx emissions from coke ovens.

Paul Wurth Geprolux

In 2014, Paul Wurth’s activities in the field of project management and civil construction were bundled together in its fully owned subsidiary Paul Wurth Geprolux in order to allow this business activity to gain greater autonomy and visibility. The year under review was a very busy one in transport infrastructure, with numerous projects being carried out both for the Luxembourg national railway company, CFL, and for Deutsche Bahn. At the start of 2015, a further milestone was reached when Paul Wurth was appointed member of a consortium, entrusted with the construction of a new tramway line in Luxembourg City.

Results for the financial year 2014

Turnover for the year was 485 million euros, staying at a similar level to that of the previous year.  Paul Wurth closed the financial year with earnings before tax of 11.2 million euros. The General Meeting approved the payment of a gross dividend of 105 euros per share on account of the 2014 financial year

Outlook

Since the investment behaviour of the steel industry is unlikely to change in 2015, repair and modernisation projects will continue to dominate the market and do offer good opportunities for the Group. Besides the OEM business, this opens more possibilities to expand the servicing business.

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PAUL WURTH S.A.

 32, rue d'Alsace

 L-1122 Luxembourg

 LUXEMBOURG

 P.O. Box 2233

 L-1022 Luxembourg

 LUXEMBOURG

 Tel.: (+352) 4970-1

 Fax.: (+352) 4970-2209

 paulwurth@paulwurth.com

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