Hamburg/ Wesel, September 23, 2004

100 Years of Beck – Anniversary with Special Conference

At the end of September, Beck Electrical Insulation – one of the more recent members of ALTANA Chemie – will be celebrating its 100th birthday. The celebrations, involving customers and guests, will take place as part of a special international conference to be held in the Congress Center Hamburg. For the workforce there will be a works party on September 25, which will take place aboard a steamer on the River Elbe.

The present Beck Electrical Insulation GmbH at Hamburg was formed in 1904 by Herrmann Josef Beck in Berlin and was the first German company to specialize completely in the production of coatings and resins for the rapidly growing electrical industry. Following nationalization of the East Berlin based plant after WWII, the son of the founder, Dr. Hans-Joachim Beck, resumed production in 1951 at the current site in Hamburg-Rothenburgsort. It was not long before the company’s innovative ideas allowed it to recapture its pre-war success and develop to become one of the market leaders in the area of electrical insulation coatings and resins.

In 2003 Beck Electrical Insulation was acquired by ALTANA Chemie AG and as a company within the business unit ALTANA Electrical Insulation is the latter’s leading European company in the area of impregnating agents for electrical insulation. In 2004 parts of Rhenatech GmbH, Kempen were integrated into the Hamburg site. 120 employees now work at the company’s premises in Grossmannstraße. Beck is a market leader in the manufacture of insulating coatings and resins.

ALTANA Chemie develops and produces high-quality, innovative products in the specialty chemicals business. The specialty chemicals activities of the ALTANA Group as a globally active group of companies are consolidated in ALTANA Chemie AG. ALTANA Chemie AG with its headquarters in Wesel, Germany, is the holding company for the three business units of Additives & Instruments, Coatings & Sealants and Electrical Insulation. ALTANA Chemie provides innovative and environmentally compatible solutions, along with the appropriate special products, for coatings manufacturers, paint and plastics processors, and the electronics industry. The range of products includes additives, special coatings, sealants, compounds, impregnating agents, and testing and measuring equipment. In its target markets the company occupies a leading position in terms of quality, product solutions, innovation and service. In 2003 ALTANA Chemie, with over 2,600 employees, achieved sales of €775m. Sectorally, therefore, ALTANA Chemie is among the most innovative, fast-developing and profitable chemical corporations in the world.