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CHICAGO -February 12, 2003 - U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray (Piper Jaffray) today announced the launch of a monthly packaging mergers and acquisitions (M&A) newsletter. In addition, the firm published a report reviewing the M&A activity in the packaging industry in 2002 entitled "Mergers and Acquisitions Activity in the Packaging Industry - 2002 Year in Review."
The packaging M&A newsletter provides timely M&A highlights and trends related to the packaging industry including: M&A volume, valuations and a round-up of recent transactions and acquirer profiles. "Mergers and Acquisitions Activity in the Packaging Industry - 2002 Year in Review," provides an overview of the industry, characteristics of target packaging companies that drive strong valuations in M&A transactions, valuations of public companies, M&A activity and the expected trends in 2003.
"We are excited to offer this newsletter and report focusing on the packaging industry," said Doug Lawson, a vice president in U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray's Middle Market M&A Group. "Both the newsletter and report provide a breadth of information on the state of the packaging M&A market. We believe the packaging M&A newsletter will offer packaging companies, private equity firms and the financing community a timely and unique look into the packaging industry."

To subscribe to the newsletter and receive a copy of the "Mergers and Acquisitions Activity in the Packaging Industry - 2002 Year in Review," go to www.gotoanalysts.com/thewrap or contact Dana Wade at dwade@pjc.com.

U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray, a subsidiary of Minneapolis-based U.S. Bancorp, is a focused securities firm comprised of three divisions: Equity Capital Markets, Fixed Income Capital Markets and Private Advisory Services. The firm provides a full range of investment products and services to individuals, institutions and businesses. The firm has over 120 offices in 24 states across the country. The Equity Capital Markets Division focuses on the needs of growth companies in the health care, technology, financial institutions, consumer and communications growth sectors. The firm has a national reputation for its expertise in fundamental research and equity and debt financing. The Fixed Income Capital Markets business provides bond issuers, individual investors and institutional investors expertise in investment banking, underwriting, trading, sales and research. The firm offers innovative solutions in corporate and government debt financings with particular expertise in corporate, health care/hospitals, real estate, higher education and government debt. The Private Advisory Services division financial advisors provide guidance in retirement planning, education planning, estate planning and wealth accumulation. Investors select from a wide array of products, including fee-based products, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, annuities, insurance and trust services. U.S. Bancorp offers a comprehensive range of financial solutions through U.S. Bank, U.S. Bancorp Asset Management, U.S. Bancorp Investments and U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray. For more information on U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray, visit www.piperjaffray.com. Non-deposit investment products are not insured by the FDIC, are not deposits or other obligations of or guaranteed by U.S. Bank National Association or its affiliates, and involve investment risks, including possible loss of the principal amount invested.

This report should be read in conjunction with important disclosure information found at the following site: http://www.piperjaffray.com/disclosures.

© 2003 U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray, 800 Nicollet Mall, Suite 800, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55402-7020

Additional information is available upon request.