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Pentair Launches E-Commerce Site in India to Serve Asia's Growing Water-Purification Demand

August 8, 2000

MINNEAPOLIS, Aug. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Pentair, Inc. (NYSE: PNR), a $3.2 billion diversified manufacturer, announced today that its Water Technologies Group has launched an e-commerce web site to increase its already-substantial water purification business in the rapidly-growing economies of Asia.

The web site, called e-watershop India ( ), is designed to be an electronic shopping store for Pentair's large number of water products. It also serves as a reference source for helpful information about the importance of clean, potable water to consumers, public health agencies, and industry. The site presents a wide range of products that can be ordered directly from the web site and are increasingly in demand for water treatment and purification applications in India and other expanding economies in Asia.

Pentair is a leading supplier of quality water-purification components throughout the world, and has a significant share of the market in India. The company has a major manufacturing facility in Goa that serves the Indian market and also exports products to the United States and Europe. The company said the new web site will serve its existing customers more effectively and efficiently, while broadening its customer base in India and other Asian countries.

"With economies rapidly expanding, the need for purified water is growing exponentially throughout Asia," said Richard J. Cathcart, president of Pentair's Water Technologies Group. "Pentair anticipates that e-watershop India will be a major player in meeting this demand for products and information."

Pentair's water purification components, such as water softener valves, pressure tanks, filters, pumps, and reverse osmosis membranes and housings are offered on the web site. They are purchased by companies in India to assemble water-treatment equipment that is sold to businesses and institutions requiring pure water for day-to-day operations, such as hospitals, hotels, soft-drink bottlers, software-component manufacturers and other producers of high-technology products.

Expecting strong initial success of e-watershop India, Pentair is planning to launch a second e-watershop in the fall of 2000 to serve Taiwan, China, and Southeast Asia, a region that the company believes offers an even larger potential for growth because of the expanding need for pure water. The web site, e-watershop Asia, will be available to customers in traditional Chinese, simplified Chinese, and English. This site will support a new distribution center the company will open in Taiwan this fall. Pentair's new market initiatives are key elements of its strategy to increase revenues for the Water Technologies Group from Asia by $150 million in the next two to three years.

Cathcart said Pentair also plans to open an e-commerce web site in Italy to expand business for the Water Technologies Group in Europe. This site will complement a major distribution center that Pentair operates in Milan. It will offer products and services in several languages to meet the needs of customers throughout Europe. The site, e-watershop Europe, is expected to be operational by the end of the year.

Revenues of Pentair's Water Technologies Group increased 110 percent to $255.6 million and operating income gained 136 percent to $41.4 million in the second quarter of 2000. Strong performances were recorded in the pump, water treatment, and pool and spa sectors of the business, both in North America and abroad.

"There is a huge world-wide need for pure water and the situation will become even more critical," said Cathcart. "These e-commerce initiatives will help Pentair serve this large, and fast-growing, demand for high-quality purification products."

Pentair ( ) is a $3.2 billion diversified manufacturer operating in tools, equipment, water technologies and enclosures markets. The company employs 14,000 people in more than 50 locations around the world. SOURCE Pentair, Inc.

CONTACT: Mark Cain of Pentair, Inc., 612-486-2761/