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Rockwood Press Release

For Immediate Distribution
August 10, 2009

Download this document as a PDF file (320k)

Timothy McKenna
Phone: 609-734-6430

Rockwood Holdings’ Lithium Business Awarded $28.4 million in Stimulus Funds
for the Production of Advanced Materials for Lithium Ion Batteries in the U.S.

Princeton, NJ USA (August 10, 2009) – Rockwood Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:ROC) today announced that the U.S. Department of Energy has awarded its Chemetall Foote Corp. subsidiary $28.4 million in Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds to expand and upgrade the production of lithium materials for advanced transportation batteries.

The funds will be used by Rockwood to expand and upgrade the production of lithium carbonate at the company’s Silver Peak, Nevada, site and add the production of very high purity lithium hydroxide to the company’s Kings Mountain, North Carolina, facility.  Rockwood and its Chemetall business are the only U.S. domestic source of lithium raw material and the largest global producer of lithium and lithium compounds used in batteries, pharmaceuticals and many other industries.

Commenting on the award, Seifi Ghasemi, chairman and chief executive officer, said, “The current dependence of the US and Western Europe on imported oil is a major national security issue. The practical and environmentally beneficial way to reduce this unsustainable dependence is the electrification of the transportation system. The key enabling technology to achieve this worthwhile goal is further development of lithium ion batteries as the most effective means of storing energy in all-electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles. We are very pleased to see the U.S. government taking the initiative and providing major support toward the commercialization of these technologies.

“Rockwood and its subsidiary Chemetall are proud to be among the awardees from this highly competitive process, and to be an important part of this national program. We are committed to use our global leadership position to support the eventual electrification of the transport system in the US and across the globe.”

The Department of Energy’s $2.4 billion program under the Recovery and Reinvestment Act is the single largest investment in advanced battery technology for hybrid and electric-drive vehicles ever made, and the award to Rockwood’s business ranks, in dollar amount, as third highest among advanced material grants.  Together, the awarded projects are expected to accelerate the development of manufacturing capacity for batteries in the U.S. and electric drive components as well as the deployment of electric vehicles.

Rockwood Holdings, Inc. is a leading global specialty chemicals and advanced materials company. Rockwood has a worldwide employee base of approximately 10,000 people and annual net sales of approximately $3.0 billion. Rockwood focuses on global niche segments of the specialty chemicals, pigments and additives and advanced materials markets. For more information on Rockwood, please visit

The information set forth in this press release contains certain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 concerning the business, operations and financial condition of Rockwood Holdings, Inc. and its subsidiaries and affiliates ("Rockwood"). Words such as "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "expects," "forecasts," "predicts" and variations of such words or expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Although Rockwood believes the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, there can be no assurance that its expectations will be realized. "Forward-looking statements" consist of all non-historical information, including any statements referring to the prospects and future performance of Rockwood. Actual results could differ materially from those projected in Rockwood's forward-looking statements due to numerous known and unknown risks and uncertainties, including, among other things, the "Risk Factors" described in Rockwood's 2008 Form 10-K on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Rockwood does not undertake any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which any such statement is made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.