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First Half Results of the Motor-Columbus Group

The Motor-Columbus Group, comprising its principal subsidiary, Atel Ltd., and Atel group companies, posted better than expected results for the first half of 2004, again showing vigorous growth. This advance is primarily due to strong performance in energy business. The results reflect the consistent continuation of the corporate strategy adopted by Atel. Through businesses based in its main markets of Switzerland, Italy and Central and Eastern Europe, it conducts significant marketing and trading activities and generates electricity in its own power plants. An encouraging rise in sales was also seen in the Energy Services Segment despite ongoing weakness in the construction industry.

During the first half of 2004, the Motor-Columbus Group’s consolidated sales climbed 46% over the comparative prior year period to reach CHF 3.4 billion. Consolidated EBIT rose 12% to CHF 210 million. Consolidated income before minority interest was CHF 166 million, up 25%.

For the full year 2004, the Motor-Columbus Group expects a substantial increase in sales and higher operating income than last year (2003: sales of CHF 5,285 million, consolidated income of CHF 272 million).