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Dietrich, MiTek Plan Joint Venture for Technologically Advanced Light Gauge Metal Framing Systems


The two companies believe the joint venture will significantly expand the use of computer designed, pre-fabricated light gauge all-metal roof, floor and wall framing systems in commercial, institutional and residential construction.

The new company, to be named Aegis Metal Framing, will leverage the industry-leading manufacturing, marketing and technical capabilities of Dietrich and the world-class software, engineering and product development efforts of MiTek. The result will be a new company focused on providing light gauge all metal component manufacturers and contractors with the widest array of products and services, including Dietrich's unique Trade Ready(R) floor system and MiTek's Ultra-Span(R) light gauge steel truss system.

The core of the venture's technical offering will be the MiTek 20/20 suite of light gauge steel framed roof and floor estimating and design software. This state-of-the-art software package will be expanded to include the light gauge wall framing design and panelization processes, eventually incorporating complete-structure analysis. "The metal framing industry has been seeking such a comprehensive solution for years," said Ed Ponko, President of Dietrich Metal Framing. "Aegis will provide a tremendous leap in value in all aspects of the construction process, from specification all the way through shell framing and enclosure. By streamlining the design process and controlling variability through software, Aegis will enable customers to produce a new standard in pre-fabricated, turn-key systems."

Gene Toombs, CEO of MiTek, explained the advantages the new joint venture will provide its customers. "The winners in today's construction market, be it commercial or residential, are those suppliers who display the speed and agility to provide safe, accurate, cost-effective solutions for building designers, contractors and owners. By combining the manufacturing and marketing strength of Dietrich with the software development, engineering systems and fabricator support functions of MiTek, Aegis Metal Framing will be unique in the light gauge metal framing industry. The light gauge metal component fabricators and installers will be the real winners in this new business model."

Both parties anticipate the joint venture will be finalized in October.

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 products such as automotive aftermarket stampings, pressure cylinders, metal framing, metal ceiling grid systems and laser welded blanks. The company employs 7,500 people and operates 59 facilities in 11 countries.

MiTek, based in Chesterfield, MO is a subsidiary of Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc.

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, earnings and growth, stock appreciation, plant 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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CONTACT:          Cathy Mayne Lyttle, VP, Corporate Communications,
                  +1-614-438-3077, or e-mail,, or Allison
                  McFerren Sanders, Director, Investor Relations, +1-614-840-3133, or e-mail,
        , both of Worthington Industries, Inc.

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