FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 01, 2000

Lila White
www.thedigitaldominion.com
(804) 692-3110


Curtis Raven
SMI Steel Products
(804) 391-3525
Jill Lawrence
VEDP
(804) 371-0049
Governor Gilmore Announces SMI Steel Products Expansion in Prince Edward County
-Manufacturer will create 30 additional jobs in the Farmville area -


Richmond - Governor Jim Gilmore today announced that SMI Steel Products, a subsidiary of Commercial Metals Company (NYSE: CMC), will expand its manufacturing facility in Prince Edward County. Phase one of SMI's Virginia location resulted in 150 jobs announced in March. The current expansion will create 30 additional jobs under the name of SMI-Owen Steel Company, Inc. SMI will also invest $1.2 million above the previous estimate of $5-10 million in the Farmville Industrial Park facility.

"The people of Virginia appreciate SMI's dedication to growth in the Commonwealth," said Governor Gilmore. "Virginia continues to be an optimal location for SMI to support their primary market, the eastern seaboard." The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, Virginia's Heartland and Prince Edward County assisted SMI Steel Products with its decision to expand in Virginia. The Virginia Department of Business Assistance will provide workforce training services. The county will receive an industrial rail access grant to help with site preparation.

CMC and its subsidiaries manufacture, recycle and market steel and metal products and related materials through a network of over 110 locations worldwide and currently operate three facilities in Virginia: SMI Rebar-Virginia in Fredericksburg, Howell Metal Company in Shenandoah County and SMI Steel Products- Virginia in Prince Edward County. CMC is comprised of three divisions: Recycling, Trading and Manufacturing. The expansion is part of the CMC Steel Group companies operating in the Manufacturing Division. SMI Steel Products is a manufacturer of Smartbeam™ cellular and castellated steel beams used as roof and floor supports in building construction. The basic raw material used for the product is scrap steel from automobiles, refrigerators, farm implements, etc. that has been recycled into wide flange beams.

"SMI has decided to expand its operations due to the outstanding job that the Commonwealth of Virginia, Prince Edward County and the Town of Farmville have done in helping SMI get off to a great start with the initial operation, and the confidence the company has with these relationships for the future," General Manager of SMI Steel Products Curtis Raven said.

"SMI's decision to expand in Virginia means a lot to the people of Prince Edward County," Secretary of Commerce and Trade Barry E. DuVal added. "We encourage their continued growth and success."

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