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Worthington Industries Announces Joint Venture With Bing Group


Columbus, Ohio, August 23, 2000 – Worthington Industries, Inc. (NYSE: WOR) announced today that it has signed a letter of intent with The Bing Group to form a joint venture in the Detroit Metropolitan market.

Both parties are to contribute certain existing assets to the joint venture. The joint venture would include Bing Metals Group, based in Detroit and the Worthington Industries steel processing facility located in Taylor, Michigan. The Bing Group will maintain majority ownership and control of the new entity.

“The joint venture with Worthington will allow us to extend and expand services to our customers, as well as create new opportunities for Bing and Worthington,” said David Bing, Chairman of Bing Group. “Partnering with the country's leading steel processor will align us with great resources and with a company that mirrors our industry goals and business philosophy.”

“We are excited about becoming affiliated with such a quality operation,” said John P. McConnell, Worthington's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, “and we are proud to be working with the leading, minority owned steel processor. We are prepared to offer Worthington's full manufacturing resources to support the venture and expand its capabilities.”

The companies anticipate that they can begin operations as a joint venture by the end of 2000.

The Bing Group, a Detroit–based automotive supplier with 1999 sales of $304 million, is the fifth-largest African-American company based on a recent annual survey by Black Enterprise magazine. The company employs more than 1,500 employees in its Bing-Lear Manufacturing Group and Bing Metal Group operations.

Worthington Industries is a leading diversified metal processing company with annual sales of approximately $2 billion. The Columbus, Ohio, based Company is North America's premier value-added steel processor and a leader in manufactured metal products such as automotive aftermarket stampings, pressure cylinders, metal framing, metal ceiling grid systems and laser welded blanks. The Company employs 8,000 people and operates 55 facilities in 11 countries.

Founded in 1955, the Company operates under a long-standing corporate philosophy rooted in the golden rule, with earning money for its shareholders as the first corporate goal. This philosophy, an unwavering commitment to the customer, and one of the strongest employee partnerships in American industry serve as the Company's foundation.

Safe Harbor Statement

The Company wishes to take advantage of the Safe Harbor provisions included in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (“the Act”). Statements by the Company relating to future revenues and growth, stock appreciation, plant startups, capabilities and other statements which are not historical information constitute “forward looking statements” within the meaning of the Act. All forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause actual results to differ from those projected. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, but are not limited to, the following: general economic conditions; conditions in the Company's major markets; competitive factors and pricing pressures; product demand and changes in product mix; changes in pricing or availability of raw material, particularly steel; delays in construction or equipment supply; and other risks described from time to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

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