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3M Announces Preliminary Final Results of Tender Offer for Shares of Winterthur Technologie AG

Offer to Result in Ownership of 85.3 Percent

Monday, February 28, 2011 12:00 am CST


ST. PAUL, Minn.

Public Company Information:

"We believe the focus should be on geographic expansion, acquisitions and new product innovation."

ST. PAUL, Minn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--3M announced today the preliminary final results of its tender offer for shares of Winterthur Technologie AG. Shares representing 56.1 percent of the shares of Winterthur were tendered during the offer period. Together with shares purchased from shareholders outside of the offer process, the tender offer will result in 3M owning 85.3 percent of Winterthur’s shares.

“We are very pleased with the results of our offer,” said Chris Holmes, vice president and general manager, 3M Abrasive Systems Division. “We are looking forward to working closely with the company’s leadership to establish our new relationship. As Winterthur’s most substantial shareholder, we are eager to see that the company takes all necessary steps to ensure its continued success.”

Pursuant to 3M’s agreement with Winterthur, a new board will be elected at the earliest opportunity. “We would like to see the new board place a priority on investing for the long-term,” said Holmes. “We believe the focus should be on geographic expansion, acquisitions and new product innovation.”

3M continues to believe that a complete merger between Winterthur and 3M is in the best interest of all stakeholders, including customers, employees and shareholders. Accordingly, 3M intends to continue to look for opportunities to increase its stake in the company.

Definitive results of the offering will be announced on Mar. 3. 3M previously announced its agreement to acquire Winterthur for CHF 62.00 per share.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains forward-looking information about 3M’s financial results and estimates and business prospects that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. You can identify these statements by the use of words such as “anticipate,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe,” “will,” “target,” “forecast” and other words and terms of similar meaning in connection with any discussion of future operating or financial performance or business plans or prospects. Among the factors that could cause actual results to differ materially are the following: (1) worldwide economic and capital markets conditions; (2) the Company’s credit ratings and its cost of capital; (3) competitive conditions and customer preferences; (4) foreign currency exchange rates and fluctuations in those rates; (5) the timing and acceptance of new product offerings; (6) the availability and cost of purchased components, compounds, raw materials and energy (including oil and natural gas and their derivatives) due to shortages, increased demand or supply interruptions (including those caused by natural and other disasters and other events); (7) the impact of acquisitions, strategic alliances, divestitures, and other unusual events resulting from portfolio management actions and other evolving business strategies, and possible organizational restructuring; (8) generating fewer productivity improvements than estimated; and (9) legal proceedings, including significant developments that could occur in the legal and regulatory proceedings described in the company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010. Changes in such assumptions or factors could produce significantly different results. A further description of these factors is located in the Annual Report under “Risk Factors” in Part I, Item 1A. The information contained in this news release is as of the date indicated. The company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this news release as a result of new information or future events or developments.

About Winterthur

The Winterthur Technology Group (WTG), with registered office in Zug, is a leading international supplier of complex grinding technology with production works in Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Sweden, Belgium, the USA, Russia, China and Korea. WTG holds a 40 % interest in Wendt (India) Ltd., a stock market listed company. WTG is a holding company incorporated under Swiss law and listed on the SIX Swiss Exchange. It employed in 2008 over 1,500 persons and reported sales in excess of EUR 219 million in the year 2008. In close contact with its customers, the company develops and manufactures high margin consumer goods in the grinding technology segment with a high technology content, in particular bonded grinding tools which are used in the cutting tool, automotive, turbine, machine tool and steel industry. The Group’s main brands are Winterthur, Wendt, Rappold and SlipNaxos. WTG products – ceramic grinding wheels, synthetic resin bonded grinding wheels, cut-off wheels, diamond and CBN grinding and dressing tools, together with grinding machine tools – are distributed on all the relevant markets of Europe, North and South America and Asia.

About 3M

3M captures the spark of new ideas and transforms them into thousands of ingenious products. Our culture of creative collaboration inspires a never-ending stream of powerful technologies that make life better. 3M is the innovation company that never stops inventing. With $27 billion in sales, 3M employs about 80,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 65 countries. For more information, visit www.3M.com or follow @3MNews on Twitter.


Media Contact:
Donna Fleming Runyon, 651-736-7646
Investor Contacts:
Matt Ginter, 651-733-8206
Bruce Jermeland, 651-733-1807

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