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GE Plastics and BMCI Introduce New Bulk Molding Compound

June 2003 (Newstream) - GE Plastics, a division of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), and Bulk Molding Compounds, Inc. (BMCI), headquartered in West Chicago, today announced an agreement by which the companies will develop and distribute new thermoset bulk molding compounds (BMC). As part of the agreement, GE Plastics will add the company's first thermoset to its global product portfolio. Named NORYL® ETX resin, the new high-end thermoset resin offers enhanced toughness and strength, low moisture absorption and electrical performance capabilities. NORYL ETX resin applications will be on display in the GE Plastics' booth at the National Plastics Exposition in Chicago (McCormick Place, South Hall, Booth #2215) from June 23-27.

Under the agreement with BMCI, GE Plastics will exclusively market and distribute the NORYL ETX resin-based bulk molding compounds which BMCI will toll manufacture. This commercial and manufacturing arrangement is designed to accelerate the introduction of this new technology into the marketplace. Initial target markets include automotive underhood and electrical power distribution applications.

"As an industry leader in thermosets, we continue to strive for ways to provide innovative new products to our customers," said Joe Carfora, vice president of business development for BMCI. "NORYL ETX resins add a new resin backbone to our formulation portfolio, which can do just that."

GE Plastics and BMCI teams have worked together during the last year under a joint agreement to accelerate development of NORYL ETX resin-based BMC formulations for engine valve covers and electrical insulation components for transformers. "Thermoset customers have been demanding materials with less brittleness, very little moisture uptake and a significant improvement in electrical performance," said Dr. Benny David, global industry manager for composites at GE Plastics. "NORYL ETX resin was specifically developed to offer these improved capabilities to customers."

In developing the new NORYL ETX resin, GE Plastics leverages its strong tradition of innovation by drawing on the chemical and performance expertise of its Global Research Center in Schenectady, N.Y. The result is a new thermoset resin with thermoplastic PPO® resin characteristics built into its cross-linked backbone, extending material properties further than regular thermosets such as unsaturated polyesters or epoxy vinyl esters. NORYL ETX resin properties include enhanced toughness and ductility, strength and modulus at high temperature, high heat resistance, low moisture uptake, low shrinkage, high dielectric strength and inherent FR performance.

"We are very pleased to combine talents with a strong leader in thermoplastics to better develop thermoset BMC compounds for the industry," said Larry Nunnery, president of BMCI.

"Our goal has always been to provide innovative products to our customers. We are extremely excited to enter into thermoset resins as these new materials allow us to better fulfill the needs of a growing and globally diverse customer base," said Paul Hirt, general manager, global NORYL® resins at GE Plastics.

Hirt added that the business relationship with BMCI would help GE Plastics accelerate the process of getting NORYL ETX resins to the market and its customers.

Bulk Molding Compounds, Inc. is the world's leading producer of thermoset bulk molding compounds, serving the automotive, fuel cell, electronic, electrical, consumer appliance, power tool, and conductive plastic industries. For further information on BMCI, please visit www.bulkmolding.com.

GE Plastics is a leading producer of engineered thermoplastics with major production facilities worldwide. GE Plastics materials, including LEXAN® polycarbonate, are used in a wide variety of applications such as CDs and DVDs, automobile parts, computer housings, cookware, outdoor signage, cell phones, bullet-resistant shielding and building materials. Through its LNP Engineering Plastics business, the company is a worldwide leader in the custom compounding of engineering thermoplastics. GE Plastics is also a global distributor of sheet, film, rod and tube products through GE Polymershapes and GE Structured Products. In 2003, GE Plastics is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of LEXAN polycarbonate, discovered in 1953 by GE chemist Dr. Daniel W. Fox. The company's web site is located at www.geplastics.com, and to learn more about LEXAN visit www.gelexan.com.

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Produced for GE Plastics

Contacts:


Cecilia Siu
GE Plastics
413-448-6959
Cecilia.Siu@gep.ge.com

Banu Kukner
GE Plastics
413-448-7040
Banu.Kukner@gep.ge.com

Shelane Blevins
Grapevine Marketing - BMCi
630-584-2415
shelaneb@earthlink.net

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