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KOMAG AND ASAHI GLASS FINALIZE JOINT VENTURE FOR THIN-FILM HEADS

 KOMAG AND ASAHI GLASS FINALIZE JOINT VENTURE FOR THIN-FILM HEADS
 MILPITAS, Calif., March 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Komag Inc. (NASDAQ: KMAG), a leading independent supplier of thin-film components for high-performance Winchester disk drives, and Asahi Glass America Inc., a U.S. subsidiary of Asahi Glass Co. Ltd. of Japan, last Friday completed the formation of their planned joint venture to participate in the rapidly growing market for thin-film recording heads. On Dec. 20, 1991, Komag and Asahi announced the signing of a definitive agreement in regard to this joint venture. The finalization of this joint venture was subject only to certain regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. These necessary government approvals were received within the past week.
 Under the joint venture agreement, Komag contributed to the joint venture both the stock of Dastek Inc., its recently acquired wholly owned subsidiary, and the assets of its existing thin-film head development program. This development program is based on advanced technology previously acquired from Siemens AG in 1990. Asahi Glass Co. Ltd. in turn contributed nearly $60 million in equity capital to the joint venture. At the closing on Feb. 28, 1992, Asahi contributed $36 million in cash and two discounted notes with principal and accrued interest payable in two installments of $12 million each on Dec. 31, 1992 and 1993.
 Based on these contributions, Komag and Asahi will have economic interests in the joint venture of 60 percent and 40 percent, respectively. Given its majority ownership interest, Komag will fully consolidate the operating results of the joint venture with appropriate adjustments for Asahi's minority interest effective as of the closing date.
 "We are extremely pleased to begin our second joint venture with Asahi Glass. Asahi's equity contribution provides the necessary funding for our research and development programs at Dastek as well as our planned capital expenditures to support both product development and capacity expansion," commented Stephen C. Johnson, president and chief executive officer of Komag Inc. and chief executive officer of Dastek. "With our financing in place, we can now focus our entire attention on the operational aspects of the thin-film head business and our key objective -- the development of technically superior thin- film head products using a stable and cost-effective manufacturing process. To achieve this goal, Komag and Asahi will contribute valuable technical expertise and the continuous improvement practices that have made our individual companies so successful," he continued.
 "We face a number of challenges at Dastek in 1992. Our primary task is to have 'best of class' products qualified at a broad range of customers by year end," noted Johnson. "During the last couple of months we have integrated the Dastek and Komag technical teams and they are working together effectively. Dr. Tu Chen, Komag's founder, chairman and chief scientist, and Tracy Scott, formerly group vice president of R&D at Komag, are actively involved in our improvement efforts at Dastek," he continued. "Progress toward improved microslider and nanoslider performance is being made through well-defined research and manufacturing programs. As part of our plan, the combined engineering and manufacturing teams from Asahi, Dastek and Komag will first develop technically advanced products and implement cost-effective manufacturing processes. Once these objectives are accomplished, we will then undertake an expansion of Dastek's thin-film head business," Chen concluded.
 "We are pleased to start our second joint venture with Komag," commented Toyohiko Isihigaki, general manager of the Electronics Group of Asahi Glass Co. Ltd, president of Asahi Komag Co. Ltd., and a member of Dastek's board of directors. "The success of Asahi Komag Co. Ltd., our first joint venture with Komag, is based on the excellent teamwork between Asahi and Komag. We look forward to duplicating this success at Dastek. In this regard, we are currently assigning senior engineering, manufacturing and managerial personnel to support the operations of the joint venture. Through dedication and technical excellence we hope to realize significant revenue and profit from our participation in the thin-film recording head market," he added.
 The products of Komag and Dastek address the fast growing high- capacity, high-performance segment of the Winchester disk drive market. Winchester disk drives are widely used in a broad range of computer applications from mainframes to portable computers. Komag is the leading supplier of media to this market segment and manufactures the highest density disks commercially available for the 5 1/4-, 3 1/2- and 2 1/2-inch form factors. Dastek is one of the three largest independent thin-film head suppliers to the merchant market.
 Founded in 1907 in Japan, Asahi Glass is the world's leading glass manufacturer and a major international supplier of glass-related items, chemicals, ceramics and electronic products. The international network of the Asahi group includes 22 consolidated subsidiaries worldwide. In fiscal year 1990, Asahi's nonconsolidated net sales were approximately U.S. $7.5 billion. Asahi employs approximately 9,500 people. Asahi is traded on all eight stock exchanges in Japan as well as the Luxembourg Stock Exchange.
 Founded in 1983, Komag and its two consolidated subsidiaries (Komag Material Technology Inc. and Dastek Inc.) maintain 610,000 square feet of manufacturing and administrative space in California and Malaysia. Komag also operates a technical support facility in Singapore. The company and its consolidated subsidiaries employ approximately 2,500 people. Komag also manufactures and sells thin- film disk products through its unconsolidated joint venture, Asahi Komag Co. Ltd., which is among the top three media producers in Japan. The company is traded on the NASDAQ over-the-counter market under the symbol KMAG.
 -0- 3/2/92
 /CONTACT: David H. Allen, William L. Potts, Jr., or T. Hunt Payne, all of Komag Inc., 408-946-2300; or John Trifari of John Trifari Public Relations, 415-349-9812, for Komag/
 (KMAG) CO: Komag Inc. ST: California IN: CPR SU: JVN


DG -- SJ006 -- 4127 03/02/92 16:07 EST
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Date:Mar 2, 1992
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