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March 1, 1999

Continental Illinois Venture Corporation Sells Custom Industries to Cosun

CIVC Partners, an affiliate of Bank of America, announced today that Continental Illinois Venture Corporation (CIVC) and a group of minority investors have sold St. Louis-based Custom Industries, a specialty food ingredients manufacturer, to Cooperatie Cosun, U.A. (Cosun). Financial terms of the cash transaction were not disclosed.

Custom Industries is a specialty food ingredient manufacturer that supplies custom-formulated particulates (additives that carry flavor) to the bakery, cereal, dairy and confectionery industries. Its flavoring particulates are used in a wide variety of private label and branded food products including ready-to-eat breakfast cereals, baked goods, toaster pastries, frozen waffles, dry mixes, bagels, specialty breads, ice cream and confectionery items. Custom Industries also offers a line of dairy products including cocoa and chocolate powders, variegates (syrups), fruit purees and novelty ingredients. CIVC acquired a majority interest in Custom Industries in December 1993.

CIVC Partners is a $500 million private equity fund whose sole limited partner is Bank of America. With 30 years' experience in private equity investing, CIVC Partners provides growth capital to middle market companies with a focus on communications, financial services, business services, and industrial growth.

Based in Breda, The Netherlands, Cosun manufactures ingredients for the food industry. Through its various companies, Cosun produces sugar, sugar specialties, spices, sauces and toppings. Cosun synthesizes the application knowledge of its various companies to develop new products.

BT Alex Brown acted as financial advisor to Custom Industries and CIVC.

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