H.I.G. Capital Announces the Formation of American Hardwood Industries

    MIAMI, October 16 /CNW/ - H.I.G. Capital, a leading global private equity
firm, announced today the formation of American Hardwood Industries, Inc.
("AHI" or "Company") through the simultaneous recapitalization of Rossi
American Hardwoods ("Rossi") and Hardwood Lumber Manufacturing ("HLM").
Headquartered in Cromwell, CT and with operations in strategically favorable
locations for hardwood lumber, American Hardwood Industries is a leading
lumber products manufacturer with a diverse product portfolio, including high
grade white oak, cherry, hard maple, red oak and other species. Rossi and HLM
are vertically-integrated suppliers with robust operations in timber-rights
purchasing, sawmills, kiln-drying and logistical support. The Company's
products are used heavily in the remodeling market with end uses such as
high-end flooring, custom cabinetry, furniture and molding. The Company is a
leading exporter of premium American hardwoods to over 40 international
markets. AHI has over 150 million board feet of production capacity, making it
one of the largest producers in the US.

    Founded in 1925, Rossi American Hardwoods is one of the premier
manufacturers in the US and one of the leading suppliers to over forty
international markets. Rossi American Hardwoods is led by Ted Rossi, who will
be Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of AHI. Hardwood Lumber Manufacturing,
strategically located in the best areas in the US for high grade cherry and
hard maple, is led by David Marshall who will be President and COO of AHI.

    "We are very excited about partnering with one of the top management
teams in the sector. Ted is an effective operator and industry leader and
Rossi American Hardwoods has developed a reputation as a top quality supplier
in international markets. HLM offers a sophisticated, metrics-oriented and
disciplined, management approach that is unique in the industry," said Brian
Schwartz, Managing Director of H.I.G. Capital. Roman Krislav of H.I.G. Capital
added, "Rossi and HLM have consistently invested in quality equipment and
management personnel. We believe American Hardwood Industries is
well-positioned to benefit from an improvement in sector fundamentals. We look
to continue to partner with outstanding management teams and increase our
exposure to the sector." This is H.I.G. Capital's second investment in the
sector, after the recapitalization of Virginia-based Augusta Lumber in
December 2006.

    H.I.G. partnered with management to consummate the transaction. "H.I.G.
distinguished itself in really understanding the business and moving quickly
to get a deal done. As we look to add to our platform, we are fortunate to
have a partner that understands the sector and has the financial resources to
help us execute our growth plan and support our acquisition strategy," said
Ted Rossi.

    About H.I.G. Capital

    H.I.G. Capital L.L.C. ("H.I.G.") is a leading global private equity
investment firm with more than $4 billion of equity capital under management.
Based in Miami, and with offices in Atlanta, Boston, and San Francisco in the
U.S., as well as affiliate offices in London, Hamburg and Paris in Europe,
H.I.G. specializes in providing capital to small and medium-sized companies
with attractive growth potential. H.I.G. invests in management-led buyouts and
recapitalizations of profitable and well managed manufacturing or service
businesses. H.I.G. also has extensive experience with financial restructurings
and operational turnarounds. Since its founding, H.I.G. has completed more
than 75 transactions. The firm currently manages a portfolio of more than 50
companies with combined revenues in excess of $7 billion. For more
information, please refer to the H.I.G. website at www.higcapital.com.

For further information:

For further information: H.I.G. Capital, LLC, Miami Brian Schwartz,
Managing Director, 305-379-2322 bschwartz@higcapital.com or Roman Krislav,
305-379-2322 rkrislav@higcapital.com

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