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Sale of Grove Worldwide finalized

August 09, 2002

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

SHADY GROVE, Pa. - Final papers have been signed for the sale of Grove Worldwide to Manitowoc Co. Inc. of Wisconsin, a deal that has been in the making for more than 10 years, a Manitowoc executive said Thursday.

Manitowoc acquired the Shady Grove crane maker for $271 million, said Steven Khail, director of investments and corporate communication for Manitowoc.

"This really will be a marriage made in heaven," Khail said of the sale.

Manitowoc bought the company from Grove Investors Inc. with a combination of cash to be paid at a later date, a private offering of senior subordinated notes due in 2012 and Manitowoc common stock.

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It could not be learned Thursday what, if any, impact the sale would have on management or production personnel at the Shady Grove plant.

Khail said there are no plans to close the Shady Grove plant and move its operation to other Manitowoc facilities.

He said the acquisition will bode well for local employees and Franklin County.

He said he could not say if the 125 Grove workers who were laid off last month would be recalled as a result of the sale.

He said it will enhance the marketing position for Manitowoc, a leading worldwide maker of lattice-boom crawler cranes, its Potain European division, which makes power cranes, as well as the market for Grove products.

"We will become a true global provider," he said.

Grove will become part of Manitowoc's crane segment.

Terry D. Growcock, Manitowoc's president and chief executive officer, said in a prepared release Thursday that the acquisition represents a strong growth opportunity for Manitowoc by adding mobile cranes to its product offering.

"In addition, it confirms our position as the world's leading provider of lifting equipment for the construction industry and allows us to provide equipment and lifting solutions for virtually any construction application," Growcock said.

At the end of 2001, Manitowoc's worldwide employment topped 6,000, Khail said.

The U.S. Justice Department ordered Manitowoc to sell off its own or Grove's boom truck division to avoid a monopoly before the government would allow the sale to go through.

Last week, Manitowoc announced that it would sell its own boom truck division in Georgetown, Texas, to meet the federal mandate.

Grove was last sold in 1997 for more than $605 million to Keystone Investment Co. of Fort Worth, Texas.

Employment at Grove was more than 2,500 when Keystone bought the company. Following a string of major layoffs over the last five years, the number of workers at the Shady Grove plant is around 1,000.

Grove filed a successful bankruptcy petition last year that cut its debt from $584 million to $205 million. A bailout by a banking group and bondholders brought the company back to solvency earlier this year.

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