Kiotech International plc

September 30, 2005 02:41 ET

Kiotech International plc: Signs Distribution Agreement with Rapala & Announces Board Change

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(CCNMatthews - Sept. 30, 2005) - Kiotech International plc (AIM:KIO), the provider of pheromone biotechnology for fish farming, commercial and sports fishing, today announces it has signed an exclusive worldwide distribution agreement with Rapala VMC Corporation for Ultrabite, Kiotech's pheromone-based appetite and bite-inducing additive aimed at the global sports and leisure fishing market.

Rapala VMC Corporation is the world-leading manufacturer and distributor of fishing lures, and one of the largest distributors of premium fishing tackle. The Group is based in Minnesota, USA, with subsidiaries in 12 countries and a distribution network covering more than 130 countries. Rapala's primary manufacturing facilities are located in Finland, France, Ireland, Estonia and China. In 2004, the Group generated net sales of EUR 174 million.

Ultrabite is Kiotech's first pheromone-based fishing product. It can be used in all forms of sports and leisure fishing - course, sea and game - with differing formulae being sold for different species. In the UK alone it is estimated that there are over 3.5 million anglers and in the US there are over 34 million.

This agreement has led to an internal restructuring at Kiotech, the major result of which is the resignation of the CEO, John Loftus, who will be joining Rapala to continue his role of worldwide marketing and sales of Ultrabite. Nick Scott, Chairman, will assume the role of interim CEO pending the appointment of a replacement. The Company continues to maintain tight cost controls and the restructuring is expected to result in a significant reduction in overheads.

Commenting on the agreement with Rapala and the resignation of John Loftus, Nick Scott, Chairman & Interim CEO, said: "We are delighted to have signed this agreement with Rapala, which we believe significantly increases the sales potential of our Ultrabite product. It also enables Kiotech to focus on the development of products targeting the aquaculture and commercial fishing markets, where we believe a major commercial opportunity exists.

"We would like to thank John Loftus for his considerable efforts in leading the development of Kiotech, and in particular, our Ultrabite product. John has extensive experience in the sports fishing market and this expertise is most applicable to the continuing promotion of Ultrabite. We look forward to continuing to work with John in his new role at Rapala."

For further information, please contact:

Nicholas Scott, Chairman Tel: +44 (0)20 7398 7700

Abchurch Communications
Heather Salmond/Charlie Jack Tel: +44 (0) 20 7398 7700

Notes to Editors

Kiotech is a biotechnology company providing pheromone technology for the fish farming, commercial and sports fishing markets.

The Company is working in partnership with the UK Government agency, The Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science (CEFAS), which specialises in sustainable management of the aquatic environment. This partnership has developed innovative pheromone technology to improve both the production and sustainability of the worldwide commercial fishing and fish farming (aquaculture) markets.

At present, the Company produces Ultrabite, an attractant sold to the sports and leisure fishing markets, which has achieved sales in over 30 countries, including the US, Australia and Japan.

The range of products in development are aimed at the commercial fishing and aquaculture industries where Kiotech expects to be in a strong position to supply the market with products that will greatly increase the commercial and operational efficiency of commercial fishing operations and fish farms. At the same time these products are designed to help alleviate the growing environmental concerns that surround these industries. The Company is listed on the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange (symbol KIO).

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