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                      | HITACHI HOME | UP | SEARCH | HITACHI

                      News Release

                      April 15, 1998

                      Amtrex & Hitachi Announce Strategic Alliance for Air Conditioners in India

                      The Strategic Alliance

                      Ahmedabad based Amtrex Appliances & Hitachi, Ltd., headquartered in Tokyo Japan today jointly announced a new strategic alliance for the Indian Room Airconditioning market. The announcement of the new strategic alliance between the two long standing partners, Amtrex, the third largest air conditioning company in India and the global electrical & electronics giant Hitachi was a so accompanied by the launch of two new AC models. The two new models launched today have been especially designed for India by Hitachi at its R&D facilities in Japan and will carry the new brand name of Amtrex-Hitachi. The new brand identity named after both the alliance partners will be used for all the new products using latest technology from Hitachi.

                      Hitachi, Ltd.

                      Hitachi Ltd., headquarted in Tokyo, Japan is one of the world's leading global companies, with consolidated sales of JPY 8,523 billion (US$ 68.7 billion at an exchange rate of JPY 124 to the US$) at the end of March 1997. The company manufactures and markets a wide range of products, including computers, semiconductors, consumer products and power and industrial equipments.

                      The Refrigeration & Air Conditioning (RAC) Division of Hitachi, founded in 1944 developed the first room airconditioner in Japan in 1952. Today, the RAC division is a leading player in the global air conditioner market. Its Asian manufacturing facilities located in Japan, Malaysia, China, Taiwan & Thailand, produce about two million room air conditioners annually, about six times the size of the total Indian market.

                      Amtrex Appliances Ltd.

                      Amtrex Appliances, a part of the well known Ahmedabad based Lalbhai group, was founded in 1984, and has been the fastest growing AC company in the post liberation era after 1991. Today, with an all India presence and a market share of 16%, Amtrex is the third largest player in the Room Air Conditioner market. In the just concluded financial year on 31st March 1998, Amtrex is estimated to have registered a total turnover of Rs. 1, 180 million with a volume growth of more than 20% in room air conditioner segment.

                      The Strategic Alliance

                      The new strategic alliance between Hitachi and Amtrex will include :

                      • Supply of latest technology for new models of Window & Split AC's
                      • Upgradation of the manufacturing & design facilities of Amtrex to meet Hitachi standards.
                      • Marketing of the new models in India under the new brand identity of Amtrex-Hitachi.
                      • Upgradation of the Amtrex sales & service network in line with Hitachi's international standards.
                      New Models

                      The new models now launched are the first in the new series of Amtrex-Hitachi. These are the latest air conditioners in their class developed by Hitachi anywhere in the world and incorporate the best in technology as well as human interface.

                      New Window AC

                      The new Window AC, currently available in the capacity of 1.5 Ton incorporates the following:

                      • A new power efficient rotary compressor from Hitachi developed specifically for the tropical climates.
                      • New critical electrical & electronic components sourced from Hitachi's vendors world-wide, making the product Safest to operate & failure proof.
                      • A new unique front grille with following exclusive features:
                      Detachable suction grille, easy to remove & wash
                      New unique design of Horizontal Air Beam Flaps for stronger air flow
                      Unique design of grille making it more silent
                      Pleasing & harmonious personality through Smile line.
                      • A new heat exchanger & system tubing for higher cooling performance.
                      New Split AC

                      The new Split AC, currently available in the capacity of 1.5 Ton incorporates the following:

                      • A new power efficient rotary compressor from Hitachi developed specifically for Split air-conditioning in tropical climates, using a unique injection cooling system for the compressor. This ensures trouble free optimum operations even in the harsh tropical conditions.
                      • Sleek & technologically advanced units imported from Hitachi
                      • Artificial intelligence system to ensure personalised user comfort
                      • Air purifying filters to ensure clean & healthy air in the room
                      • Most silent air conditioner in India at 42 decibels

                      The two models now launched are a result of the joint development efforts of Hitachi and Amtrex over the last one year. A host of other new models are in various stages of development, out of which another Eight new models are slated for market launch during 1998. These will include new Window, Split & Multi Split models in various capacities. It is planned to continue the thrust of technology and product upgradation at least for the next 3-4 years with a host of new product launches to coincide with every summer season.

                      The new Amtrex-Hitachi models are initially available in all metros through Amtrex's 400 dealer strong sales & service network. The products are priced very competitivly in relation to compare models in India.

                      Future of the New Alliance

                      With these latest offerings, coupled with the continuous onslaught of new products that will stretch well into the new millennium, Amtrex & Hitachi are confident of significantly improving the current market share. These new models will help the new strategic alliance face the future competition in the Indian market.

                      For further information, please contact: Ms. Devdatta Mulchandani/Mr.Vikram Patel/Ms.Amrit Borkakoty Horizons Public Relations (New Delhi, India) Ph. 6185893/ 6185951/6185892 Fax 6196522

                      WRITTEN BY Secretary's Office
                      All Rights Reserved, Copyright (C) 1998, Hitachi, Ltd.

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