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ALCOA AND KOBE STEEL FINALIZE TRANSPORTATION JOINT VENTURE

 ALCOA AND KOBE STEEL FINALIZE TRANSPORTATION JOINT VENTURE
 PITTSBURGH, March 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Alcoa (NYSE: AA) and Kobe Steel, Ltd. have finalized a joint venture agreement that creates two companies -- one in Japan and the other in the United States -- to produce aluminum sheet for the transportation industry, it was announced today.
 The 50/50 joint venture is based on an agreement announced last October.
 The Japanese company, to be named Kobe Alcoa Transportation Products Ltd. (KATP), will produce aluminum products for transportation markets primarily in Japan. These markets include shipping, rail car and transit systems in addition to automotive.
 KATP will engage in research and development, production and marketing of aluminum sheet products as well as R&D on aluminum extrusions, castings and forgings related to transportation applications.
 Kobe Steel's Moka Plant in Tochigi Prefecture initially will produce KATP's aluminum sheet products under a tolling arrangement. The company eventually will lease a portion of the Moka facility, with Kobe Steel handling actual production. Kobe Steel also will sell the products until KATP establishes its own sales capabilities.
 The U.S. company will be called Alcoa Kobe Transportation Products Inc. (AKTP) and will be headquartered in Pittsburgh. AKTP will supply U.S. auto manufacturers, Japanese automotive transplants and other customers primarily in the North American Market. As in Japan, AKTP will pursue R&D, market development and sales of aluminum sheet, as well as production and marketing.
 Sheet products for the U.S. company will be produced at Alcoa's Davenport (Iowa) Works. Sales of the products will be handled by Alcoa until the company establishes its own sales capabilities.
 Alcoa will provide a stable supply of ingot to the two companies.
 By forming the companies in the United States and Japan, Alcoa and Kobe Steel said they expect to meet the rapidly growing demand for aluminum products in transportation applications.
 Aluminum's light weight, high strength-to-weight ratio, durability, resistance to corrosion, recyclability and ease in forming and machining make it the most effective material option for achieving substantial automotive fuel efficiency.
 The transportation venture is the third joint venture between Alcoa and Kobe since the two firms formed a strategic alliance in 1990 to pursue worldwide business opportunities in aluminum. The other joint ventures are KSL Alcoa Aluminum Company Ltd., formed to produce and market aluminum container sheet in Japan and the Far East, and Alcoa Kobe Tube Specialties Ltd. that manufactures and markets drawn aluminum tubes in North America.
 -0- 3/30/92
 /EDITORS: This announcement was released by Kobe Steel Ltd., Tokyo, today, Monday, March 30, in Tokyo at what would have been 1 a.m. EST in the United States./
 /CONTACT: John F. McMahon of Alcoa, 412-553-3704, or Spencer A. Kimura of Kobe Steel, in Tokyo, 03-3218-6055/
 (AA) CO: Alcoa; Kobe Steel, Ltd. ST: Pennsylvania IN: MNG SU: JVN


CD -- PG003 -- 2692 03/30/92 08:18 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Mar 30, 1992
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