News Release

Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, The Carlyle Group and Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity to Acquire Hertz from Ford Motor Company for $15 Billion; New Owners See Significant Growth Opportunities


New York – Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, Inc. (CD&R), The Carlyle Group (Carlyle) and Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity (MLGPE), announced today that they have reached a definitive agreement with Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) to acquire The Hertz Corporation (Hertz), the world’s largest vehicle rental organization, in a transaction valued at $15 billion. George W. Tamke, a CD&R Operating Partner, will serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors. The transaction is subject to normal regulatory approvals and is expected to close by year end.

Mr. Tamke said, "The company’s underlying strengths – an exceptional global brand, premium pricing supported by superior customer service and a history of industry innovation – form a strong platform on which to pursue further growth initiatives."

Gregory S. Ledford, Carlyle Managing Director, said, "We welcome the opportunity to work with this storied company, the number one brand in the global auto rental industry. In addition, we are delighted to partner with the company’s management team and employees to support the next phase of Hertz’s growth."

"We have been looking at Hertz for more than three years and believe it fits squarely within our investment strategy – a complex corporate divestiture of a market leading business with a powerful franchise and opportunities for profitable growth," said David H. Wasserman, the partner who led the transaction negotiations for CD&R.

"We look forward to working with our equity partners and Hertz management for the company’s continued success," said Nathan C. Thorne, President of MLGPE.

Craig R. Koch, Hertz Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, "We are pleased to be partnering with an outstanding group of financial and operating investors who understand our business and are committed to supporting our continued growth, success and value creation."

Hertz is the leader in the $25+ billion annual sales global car rental market with strong positions in the high-margin corporate and leisure sectors, where service is most highly valued. Hertz has more than $7 billion in annual revenue and has been consistently profitable in recent years. Founded in 1918, the company has 7,000 locations in the U.S. and 150 foreign countries.

The investor group was advised by Deutsche Bank AG, Lehman Brothers Inc. and Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. Debevoise & Plimpton LLP provided legal counsel.

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About Clayton, Dubilier & Rice

Clayton, Dubilier & Rice, Inc. (CD&R) is a leading private equity investment firm that has earned consistent, superior investment returns using an integrated operational and financial approach to building and growing portfolio businesses.

Since its founding in 1978, CD&R has managed the investment of over $5.5 billion in 37 businesses – mostly subsidiaries or divisions of large multi-business corporations – representing a broad range of industries with an aggregate transaction value in excess of $25 billion and revenues of approximately $40 billion.

Regarding Mr. Tamke’s background, he served as Chairman of Kinko’s, an investment that CD&R sold to FedEx in February 2004 and currently serves as Chairman of Culligan International, a leading global provider of water treatment products and services, which a CD&R-managed fund acquired in September of 2004. Before joining CD&R in 2000, Mr. Tamke was co-CEO of Emerson Electric. The firm has offices in New York and London and manages approximately $8 billion of capital. For more information about CD&R, visit

About Merrill Lynch

Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity (MLGPE) is the private equity arm of Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.

Merrill Lynch is one of the world's leading financial management and advisory companies with offices in 36 countries and total client assets of approximately $1.6 trillion. As an investment bank, it is a leading global underwriter of debt and equity securities and strategic advisor to corporations, governments, institutions, and individuals worldwide. Through Merrill Lynch Investment Managers, the company is one of the world's largest managers of financial assets. Firm wide, assets under management total $478 billion. For more information on Merrill Lynch, please visit

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Clayton, Dubilier & Rice: Tom Franco, (212) 232-2220; Chris Tofalli, (212) 232-2226

The Carlyle Group: Chris Ullman, (202) 729-5450

Merrill Lynch Global Private Equity: Terez Hanhan, (212) 449-2004

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