Abbott Laboratories to Acquire ZonePerfect Nutrition

- Acquisition Will Expand Nutritional Line of Abbott's Ross Products Division Into the Rapidly Growing Healthy Living and Weight Control Categories -

ABBOTT PARK, Ill., July 24 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire ZonePerfect Nutrition Company. ZonePerfect Nutrition, based in Beverly, Mass., markets a line of healthy and nutritious products for active people.

Under the terms of the agreement, Abbott will acquire all of the equity of ZonePerfect Nutrition, a privately held company, for approximately $160 million in cash. The transaction will not have an impact on Abbott's 2003 earnings per share guidance. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including government approvals, and is expected to close during the third quarter of 2003.

Founded in 1996, ZonePerfect Nutrition markets its products through major food, drug and mass merchandisers across the United States as well as through its direct to consumer program. ZonePerfect Nutrition's product formulations conform to a 40/30/30 carbohydrate, protein and dietary fat ratio. The brand is squarely positioned in the center of the rapidly growing healthy living and weight control categories.

"The acquisition of ZonePerfect Nutrition provides us with the fastest growing brand of nutritional bars, and it affords the opportunity to expand Abbott's leading position in the medical nutritional category into the healthy living segment," said Mark F. Gorman, vice president, medical nutritionals, Abbott Laboratories. "The healthy living category is growing very rapidly, and Abbott is uniquely positioned to deliver high-quality nutritional solutions to consumers in this segment."

"Our mission of providing 'Nutrition for a Time-Starved World(TM)' underlies our success in nutritional bars," said Christopher P. Baker, chief executive officer, ZonePerfect Nutrition. "The addition of Abbott's resources, research and development, and marketing expertise will strengthen the brand and accelerate the rate of new product introductions. Becoming a part of Abbott offers great opportunity for the ZonePerfect(TM) brand and our customers."

Abbott's Ross Products Division -- A Longstanding Commitment to Nutrition

As a world leader in adult and infant nutrition, the Ross Products Division of Abbott Laboratories is committed to helping people of all ages meet their nutritional needs. Abbott's Ross Products Division pioneered the market for adult nutritionals more than three decades ago. Abbott's adult nutritional family of products includes Ensure(R), a source of complete balanced nutrition; Glucerna(R), a nutritional product line for people with diabetes; and ProSure(R), a nutritional product for people with cancer. For more information about Ross Products, visit .

About Abbott Laboratories

Abbott Laboratories is a global, broad-based health care company devoted to the discovery, development, manufacture and marketing of pharmaceuticals, nutritionals, and medical products, including devices and diagnostics. The company employs more than 70,000 people and markets its products in more than 130 countries. In 2002, the company's sales were $17.7 billion. Abbott's news releases and other information are available on the company's Web site at .

View Abbott Laboratories company profile.

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