Currently, Pergo owns 25.1 percent of Witex AG, while HW Industries owns the remaining shares.

Both parties have signed a binding agreement whereby Pergo will acquire all shares in Witex owned by HW Industries.

Pergo will acquire these shares by a directed share issue and a cash consideration. After completion of the transaction, HW Industries will own 20 percent of the shares in Pergo and become its largest shareholder. A total of 13,392,421 new shares will be issued, Pergo states. HW Industries will receive representation on the Board of Directors. The parties estimate that closing will be in April 2003.

The integration of Pergo and Witex is meant to create a strong, global laminate flooring group with marketing positions in Europe and North America, as well as strengthened presence in Asia, Pergo says.

The exchange is conditional upon bank commitments, and the approvals of antitrust authorities and the directed share issue at an Extraordinary General Meeting by Pergo AB.