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Mission Hockey Merges with ITECH
May 2004

In May of 2004 ITECH and Mission Hockey combined to face off against their competition. This merger of the Montreal and California based companies will create a dominate force in the hockey industry.


Mission Hockey of Santa Ana, California and Montreal-based ITECH Sport Products Inc. today announced that the two specialty hockey equipment manufacturers have merged to form one organization, Mission-ITECH Hockey. The new organization, which combines the market leader in roller hockey equipment with the market leader in facial protection, will be 100% owned by experienced, successful leaders within the hockey industry, including the Naegele family, principal owners of the NHL Minnesota Wild, Kevin Compton, principal owner of the NHL San Jose Sharks and ITECH Hockey founder and former NHL player, Robin Burns. The merger makes Mission-ITECH Hockey a major industry force, and places it amongst the largest hockey companies in the world.

A Powerful Combination
The marriage of Mission and ITECH brings together two powerful, growing brands, each of which enjoy market leadership in their core categories. Mission Hockey has been an industry leader in roller hockey for the past 9 years. Mission is also one of the preeminent ice hockey brands, experiencing double-digit growth over the past year in virtually every ice hockey equipment category in which it competes -- sticks, skates, pants, and gloves. Founded 20 years ago, ITECH is recognized worldwide as the pioneer in head, facial and goalie facial innovation and is one of the fastest growing helmet and goalie equipment brands. Combining Mission and ITECH creates a dynamic company with market-leading brands in multiple ice and roller hockey categories. In fact, the merger means that nearly half of today's NHL players now use Mission-ITECH Hockey equipment.

Bob Naegele Jr., Chairman of the newly-formed Mission-ITECH Hockey said merging with ITECH made sense for several reasons. "We scoured the hockey landscape for companies fitting three criteria: a good business partner, complementary products and strong talent within the organization. ITECH was the logical choice, and joining forces with them makes us an even stronger, more competitive hockey organization. Mission's strength in skates, sticks, and pants evolves from a strong history of roller hockey innovation; while ITECH's position in helmet/facial, goalie, and protective gear, stems from its Canadian ice hockey roots."

Merger Will Provides New Opportunities
"The combination of these two organizations creates a compelling, full- service hockey company," said Mr. Compton. "We fully intend to do what it takes to become the brands of choice for hockey retailers and consumers for premium, high-performance products."

Robin Burns said the transaction is a dream come true. "It's rare when you find individuals that share your personal faith, love of product and passion for hockey. Hockey is more than business for this leadership team -- it's a way of life. With the strength of our brands, and the commitment of this ownership team to winning, the future of Mission - ITECH Hockey is limitless."

Mike Whan, Mission Hockey's current CEO becomes CEO of Mission-ITECH Hockey. Mr. Whan has extensive senior management experience in the sporting goods industry. "Mission-ITECH Hockey now has major advantages relative to our key competition, significant growth in each of our key categories, clear and distinctive brands in each segment, and most importantly, an ownership team that is 100% hockey!"

Mr. Whan confirmed that Mission-ITECH Hockey will retain its Montreal and California roots. "We plan to maintain our strong Canadian and U.S. presence. Facilities in Montreal and in California will remain." Combined, the new global organization will compete in nearly every aspect of hockey equipment and distribute its products to over 25 countries.

About Mission Hockey
Mission Hockey was founded in 1995 by three individuals who left the constraints of a large hockey company to develop a new approach - one willing to challenge conventional wisdom, listen to players, and make products that simply made a difference in performance. Focusing initially on the rapidly growing roller hockey scene in Southern California, and committed to designing specialized and innovative products, Mission launched the Proto line of roller products and quickly gained a reputation for quality and performance. With its state-of-the-art DNA boot design, Mission, with corporate offices in Santa Ana, CA, is the market leader in roller hockey -- number one in pants, girdles, and skates.

About I-TECH
ITECH Sport Products Inc. is recognized worldwide as the pioneer in head, facial and goalie facial innovation. Founded 20 years ago by Robin Burns, a Montreal native and former NHL hockey player, ITECH has developed into one of the most successful and fastest-growing hockey brands in the industry. ITECH's key competence is in introducing innovative technologies with protective hockey equipment. ITECH has more certified (HECC, CSA, and CE) products than any other hockey equipment supplier in the industry. ITECH employs over 200 people, including an extensive North American Sales Representative network. ITECH has also developed a global network of International Distributors.

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