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JEAN S. FUGETT, JR. TO STEP DOWN AS TLC BEATRICE INTERNATIONAL CHAIRMAN IN FAVOR OF MRS. REGINALD F. LEWIS; COMPANY ANNOUNCES SEARCH FOR NEW CEO

 NEW YORK, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire/-- Jean S. Fugett, Jr., chairman and CEO of TLC Beatrice International Holdings, Inc., today announced that Mrs. Loida Nicolas Lewis has agreed to assume the position of TLC's chairman effective Feb. 1. Mrs. Lewis is the widow of Reginald F. Lewis, Mr. Fugett's brother and TLC Beatrice's late founder, chairman and CEO.
 Mrs. Lewis was elected to the company's board of directors at the board's regular, quarterly meeting in December. An attorney by profession, she served as an informal adviser and confidante to Mr. Lewis over the years.
 Mr. Fugett also announced that the company has initiated a search for a new CEO who will have responsibility for all TLC Beatrice operating units worldwide.
 Mr. Fugett said these changes signal the completion of a year-long, company-wide restructuring and cost-cutting program following Mr. Lewis' death after a brief illness last January. Directed by Mr. Fugett, the program resulted in the closing of several plants and unprofitable operations in a number of countries including Spain and Puerto Rico; in a management reorganization; and in a reduction in the company's number of employees around the world at both the corporate and operating levels.
 "Mrs. Lewis has been a key adviser to me throughout the past year," Mr. Fugett said. "I have encouraged the Lewis family, as the company's majority shareholder, to play a more active role in the business and I am delighted Mrs. Lewis has agreed to do so. She is well-suited to fulfill the role of chairman in a way that serves the interests of all the shareholders."
 "My first priority on becoming chairman and CEO of TLC Beatrice following the death of my brother, Reginald, was to ensure a smooth transition and profitable continuity of the business. These goals have largely been accomplished," he said.
 Mrs. Lewis acknowledged the critical role of Mr. Fugett during TLC Beatrice's transitional period. "Jean S. Fugett, Jr. has served TLC Beatrice and its shareholders very well during the most challenging period in the company's history," she said. "He has made difficult decisions that will benefit all shareholders in the future."
 Mrs. Lewis committed herself and the company to pursuing her late husband's vision to "produce superior returns for all shareholders while maintaining a solid balance sheet and stability and continuity in all of our operations."
 Mr. Fugett said he and Mrs. Lewis have agreed that he will continue to act as CEO at TLC Beatrice until a successor is appointed. Subsequently, he will continue as a member of the company's board of directors and management committee, thus returning to his traditional role under Mr. Lewis, where he worked on both corporate and operating issues.
 Mr. Fugett said a decision has been made by him and Mrs. Lewis to separate the roles of chairman and CEO. "The chairman will focus on broad strategic concerns of the company while the CEO will run the company on a day-to-day basis," he said.
 During the past year, in addition to the restructuring program, TLC Beatrice has expanded its Leaderprice discount stores in France from nine to over 100. Last September, the company inaugurated a new, state-of-the-art, $27 million warehouse and distribution center on the outskirts of Paris that will service its Food Distribution segment that includes Leaderprice.
 In other executive changes, Mr. Fugett announced the appointment of Vincent O'Sullivan, a longtime TLC Beatrice manager, as head of the company's southern European Grocery Products group. He will be assisted in his new duties by Richard Bacon, vice president for Grocery Products. Tony Cabban, who had headed the company's Grocery Products segment, has left the company.
 Mrs. Lewis was one of the first Asian women to pass the New York State bar exam without having studied law in the U.S. After winning an administrative judgment against the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) in 1979 that involved discrimination in hiring practices, she served as general attorney with the INS until 1990.
 Mrs. Lewis has authored three books on U.S. immigration law. She is currently the chairman of The Reginald F. Lewis Foundation, a private entity established by her husband in 1987. The Foundation has pledged or given approximately $12 million to a wide range of institutions around the world with an emphasis on African-American causes.
 TLC Beatrice International is a multinational food company with operations principally in western Europe. The company is the leading wholesale distributor of dry groceries, beverages and household products to supermarkets in the Paris area. It is a major manufacturer and marketer of ice cream in Europe and is the leading manufacturer of potato chips and snacks in Ireland. The company had revenues in 1992 of $1.6 billion.
 -0- 1/5/94
 /CONTACT: R.S. Meily of TLC Beatrice International Holdings, 212-756-8930/


CO: TLC Beatrice International Holdings, Inc. ST: New York IN: REA FOD SU: PER

TM-PS -- NY065 -- 9464 01/05/94 16:17 EST
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Date:Jan 5, 1994
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