CEO Fred Rockwood Focuses Hillenbrand Industries on Increasing Shareholder Value

Apr 10, 2001, 01:00 ET from Hillenbrand Industries Inc.

    BATESVILLE, Ind., April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- At Hillenbrand Industries
 Inc.'s (NYSE:   HB) 30th Annual Meeting of Shareholders today, President and
 Chief Executive Officer Frederick W. Rockwood said the Corporation has
 embraced a new mission and new initiatives focused on increasing value for
 shareholders.
     "Our near-term mission is to increase shareholder value.  We will grow
 value by reallocating resources to those areas of our businesses with higher
 profit potential, by seeking new revenue opportunities and by creating a
 Corporate Center that is a strategic architect of our portfolio of product
 lines, invested capital and human resources talent," Rockwood said.
     Hillenbrand, headquartered in Batesville, Ind., is a publicly traded
 holding company for three wholly owned businesses serving the funeral services
 and health care industries.  All three businesses have headquarters in
 Batesville, Ind.
     The company's Funeral Services Group consist of two businesses: Batesville
 Casket Company, the industry leading manufacturer and supplier of burial
 caskets, cremation products and related services to funeral homes; and
 Forethought Financial Services, the leading provider of insurance and trust-
 based financial products and services for planning funeral services.
 Hillenbrand's Health Care Group consists of the Hill-Rom Company, a recognized
 leader in the worldwide health care community providing sales, rentals,
 service and support for products including beds, therapy surfaces, stretchers,
 infant warmers, incubators, furniture, communication systems, surgical
 columns, medical gas management systems, modular headwalls and lighting
 systems.
     During his 25-minute President's Report, Rockwood told shareholders that
 Hillenbrand Industries enjoys enviable strengths.  Strengths he cited were
 solid financials, the leadership position in the core markets it serves,
 strong customer relationships, premier brands, a comprehensive and efficient
 distribution system, a commitment to continuous improvement, and a dedicated
 work force.
     "As your president and CEO, I am committed to building upon these
 strengths to create positive outcomes for all stakeholders of Hillenbrand
 Industries," Rockwood said.
     Rockwood also reviewed the Corporation's year-end fiscal 2000 and first
 quarter 2001 financial highlights.  He said Hillenbrand Industries reported
 record revenues of $2.1 billion, increased profit margins and increased
 earnings per share for the year 2000.  For the first quarter of 2001, the
 Corporation recorded revenues of $525 million, up 2 percent from first quarter
 2000.  Net income and earnings per share, both before unusual items, also
 increased in the first quarter 2001 compared to the same quarter a year ago.
 Detailed earnings news releases for Hillenbrand Industries' year-end 2000 and
 first quarter 2001 are available at www.hillenbrand.com .
     "As for our outlook, last week, we indicated we feel good about the
 remainder of 2001 and expect earnings per share growth of approximately
 15 percent for the year," Rockwood said.  "The strengths of Hillenbrand
 Industries position our funeral services and health care businesses well to
 benefit from the graying of America.  The number of people age 65 and older is
 growing and people age 85 and older represent the fastest growing portion of
 that group.  So the demand for our products and services should grow along
 with the aging population," he said.
     Rockwood concluded his presentation by expressing the Corporation's
 commitment to the consumers who use its products and services.
     "We are more than a casket, cremation, insurance, and hospital bed
 company.  We are the leaders in providing products and services that truly
 assist families during times of great need.  Our associates are striving to
 make a difference in people's lives.  We know real people need our beds to get
 well.  Real people need our personalized caskets to remember a loved one.
 Real people need our insurance to assure peace of mind.  That's what gets us
 up in the morning and compels us toward excellence. For us, our business is
 about providing positive outcomes for people," Rockwood said.
 
     Disclosure Regarding Forward-Looking Statements:
     Certain statements in this press release contain forward-looking
 statements, within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act
 of 1995, regarding the Company's future plans, objectives, beliefs,
 expectations, representations and projections. The Company has tried, wherever
 possible, to identify these forward-looking statements by using words such as
 "increasing," "increase," "grow," "seeking," "enjoys," "feel good," "expect,"
 and "benefit," but their absence does not mean that the statement is not
 forward-looking.  Forward-looking statements include statements regarding
 increasing shareholder value; growing value; feeling good about the remainder
 of 2001; expecting earnings per share growth of approximately 15 percent for
 the year; benefiting from the graying of America; and demand for our products
 and services should grow.  It is important to note that the Company's actual
 results could differ materially from those in any such forward-looking
 statements.  They are not guarantees of future performance. Factors that could
 cause actual results to differ include but are not limited to:  a downturn in
 the general business and economic conditions of the Company's customers, a
 decrease in death rates, whether the Company's new products are successful in
 the marketplace, a decline in customers' Medicare reimbursements could impact
 the Company's financial performance if those customers decreased capital
 spending, unsuccessful realignment and cost reduction activities previously
 announced, unanticipated legal factors or unfavorable legal results and
 compliance with certain regulations and certification requirements for new and
 existing products.  The Company assumes no obligation to update or revise any
 forward-looking statements.  Readers should also refer to the various
 disclosures made by the Company in the Company's periodic reports on Forms
 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
 
 

SOURCE Hillenbrand Industries Inc.
    BATESVILLE, Ind., April 10 /PRNewswire/ -- At Hillenbrand Industries
 Inc.'s (NYSE:   HB) 30th Annual Meeting of Shareholders today, President and
 Chief Executive Officer Frederick W. Rockwood said the Corporation has
 embraced a new mission and new initiatives focused on increasing value for
 shareholders.
     "Our near-term mission is to increase shareholder value.  We will grow
 value by reallocating resources to those areas of our businesses with higher
 profit potential, by seeking new revenue opportunities and by creating a
 Corporate Center that is a strategic architect of our portfolio of product
 lines, invested capital and human resources talent," Rockwood said.
     Hillenbrand, headquartered in Batesville, Ind., is a publicly traded
 holding company for three wholly owned businesses serving the funeral services
 and health care industries.  All three businesses have headquarters in
 Batesville, Ind.
     The company's Funeral Services Group consist of two businesses: Batesville
 Casket Company, the industry leading manufacturer and supplier of burial
 caskets, cremation products and related services to funeral homes; and
 Forethought Financial Services, the leading provider of insurance and trust-
 based financial products and services for planning funeral services.
 Hillenbrand's Health Care Group consists of the Hill-Rom Company, a recognized
 leader in the worldwide health care community providing sales, rentals,
 service and support for products including beds, therapy surfaces, stretchers,
 infant warmers, incubators, furniture, communication systems, surgical
 columns, medical gas management systems, modular headwalls and lighting
 systems.
     During his 25-minute President's Report, Rockwood told shareholders that
 Hillenbrand Industries enjoys enviable strengths.  Strengths he cited were
 solid financials, the leadership position in the core markets it serves,
 strong customer relationships, premier brands, a comprehensive and efficient
 distribution system, a commitment to continuous improvement, and a dedicated
 work force.
     "As your president and CEO, I am committed to building upon these
 strengths to create positive outcomes for all stakeholders of Hillenbrand
 Industries," Rockwood said.
     Rockwood also reviewed the Corporation's year-end fiscal 2000 and first
 quarter 2001 financial highlights.  He said Hillenbrand Industries reported
 record revenues of $2.1 billion, increased profit margins and increased
 earnings per share for the year 2000.  For the first quarter of 2001, the
 Corporation recorded revenues of $525 million, up 2 percent from first quarter
 2000.  Net income and earnings per share, both before unusual items, also
 increased in the first quarter 2001 compared to the same quarter a year ago.
 Detailed earnings news releases for Hillenbrand Industries' year-end 2000 and
 first quarter 2001 are available at www.hillenbrand.com .
     "As for our outlook, last week, we indicated we feel good about the
 remainder of 2001 and expect earnings per share growth of approximately
 15 percent for the year," Rockwood said.  "The strengths of Hillenbrand
 Industries position our funeral services and health care businesses well to
 benefit from the graying of America.  The number of people age 65 and older is
 growing and people age 85 and older represent the fastest growing portion of
 that group.  So the demand for our products and services should grow along
 with the aging population," he said.
     Rockwood concluded his presentation by expressing the Corporation's
 commitment to the consumers who use its products and services.
     "We are more than a casket, cremation, insurance, and hospital bed
 company.  We are the leaders in providing products and services that truly
 assist families during times of great need.  Our associates are striving to
 make a difference in people's lives.  We know real people need our beds to get
 well.  Real people need our personalized caskets to remember a loved one.
 Real people need our insurance to assure peace of mind.  That's what gets us
 up in the morning and compels us toward excellence. For us, our business is
 about providing positive outcomes for people," Rockwood said.
 
     Disclosure Regarding Forward-Looking Statements:
     Certain statements in this press release contain forward-looking
 statements, within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act
 of 1995, regarding the Company's future plans, objectives, beliefs,
 expectations, representations and projections. The Company has tried, wherever
 possible, to identify these forward-looking statements by using words such as
 "increasing," "increase," "grow," "seeking," "enjoys," "feel good," "expect,"
 and "benefit," but their absence does not mean that the statement is not
 forward-looking.  Forward-looking statements include statements regarding
 increasing shareholder value; growing value; feeling good about the remainder
 of 2001; expecting earnings per share growth of approximately 15 percent for
 the year; benefiting from the graying of America; and demand for our products
 and services should grow.  It is important to note that the Company's actual
 results could differ materially from those in any such forward-looking
 statements.  They are not guarantees of future performance. Factors that could
 cause actual results to differ include but are not limited to:  a downturn in
 the general business and economic conditions of the Company's customers, a
 decrease in death rates, whether the Company's new products are successful in
 the marketplace, a decline in customers' Medicare reimbursements could impact
 the Company's financial performance if those customers decreased capital
 spending, unsuccessful realignment and cost reduction activities previously
 announced, unanticipated legal factors or unfavorable legal results and
 compliance with certain regulations and certification requirements for new and
 existing products.  The Company assumes no obligation to update or revise any
 forward-looking statements.  Readers should also refer to the various
 disclosures made by the Company in the Company's periodic reports on Forms
 10-K, 10-Q and 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
 
 SOURCE  Hillenbrand Industries Inc.