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 PARSIPPANY, N.J., Oct. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Consistent with its strategy to focus on its specialty steel businesses, Armco Inc. announced that it had completed the sale of Worldwide Grinding Systems' 50-percent interest in several wire drawing operations for $33 million in cash to Leggett & Platt Incorporated, its partner in these joint ventures.
 Armco also announced that it had signed a definitive agreement to sell the balance of its Worldwide Grinding Systems segment to a Boston- based investment firm, Bain Capital, in partnership with members of the operations' management. The agreement calls for Armco to receive about $80 million in total compensation, excluding post-closing adjustments. The sale, which is expected to be completed by year-end, is subject to a number of conditions, including regulatory clearance and financing. Worldwide Grinding Systems produces grinding balls, rods, castings and process control systems for the mining industry as well as high carbon wire rods. In 1992, this segment, which employs 1700 people worldwide, had sales of $400.4 million, operating income of $10.1 million, excluding a special charge of $19.1 million, and income from joint ventures of $13.8 million. In the first half of 1993, sales, operating profit and income from joint ventures were $197.6 million, $8.9 million and $4.3 million, respectively. Total assets at June 30, 1993 were $233.5 million.
 Should the sale to Bain Capital be completed, gross cash proceeds from the divestment of Worldwide Grinding Systems and the previously announced sale of Armco's Brazilian sheet and strip operations are expected to total nearly $170 million. Armco said that approximately $24 million of the proceeds would be used to retire debt and other obligations associated with the Worldwide Grinding Systems business.
 "This is a clear indication that Armco is continuing to pursue its strategy of focusing on specialty steels and divesting non-strategic assets," stated Robert L. Purdum, Armco chairman and chief executive officer. "As this process continues, we are creating a new corporate and operational environment intent on building the leading domestic specialty steel company.
 Armco also announced that it would record $205 million in pre-tax special charges in the third quarter to cover the estimated losses and reserve requirements for the disposal of the Worldwide Grinding Systems segment, the previously announced sale of Armco's Brazilian sheet and strip business and a number of other non-strategic business units in its Other Steel and Fabricated Products segment. Approximately 10 percent of the $205 million charge will be outlays of cash over the next year.
 Of these total special charges, about $40 million is associated with the planned sale of the Worldwide Grinding Systems segment and $15 million with Armco's Brazilian sheet and strip operation. The remaining $150 million includes charges to cover the ultimate disposal of the following businesses in Armco's Other Steel and Fabricated Products segment: Cytemp Specialty Steel, a producer of high temperature super alloys; Armco Stainless & Alloy Products, a provider of conversion services; Flour City Architectural Metals, a designer and fabricator of custom curtain wall systems; Tex-Tube Division, a manufacturer of carbon steel line pipe; and Miami Industries, a carbon steel tubing maker.
 "While these actions require a substantial special charge," Purdum noted, "they will ultimately improve the competitive strength of the company."
 Armco Inc. is a leading domestic producer of stainless and electrical steels. Armco also produces carbon steels and steel products and tubular steel goods. Armco has joint venture interests in companies which produce stainless steels, carbon flat-rolled steels and oil field equipment.
 -0- 10/01/93
 /CONTACT: James A. Herzog of Armco, 201-316-5276/

CO: Armco Inc.; Leggett & Platt Incorporated; Worldwide Grinding
 Systems; Bain Capital ST: New Jersey IN: STL SU: TNM

LG -- NY014 -- 7644 10/01/93 08:41 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 1, 1993

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