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Trimble Navigation Limited
935 Stewart Drive
Post Office Box 3642
Sunnyvale, CA 94085
1.408.481.8000 phone
1.408.481.7781 fax

  NEWS RELEASE

 
Trimble to Acquire Spectra Precision to Further Address High
Growth Markets

SUNNYVALE, Calif., May 11, 2000 -- Trimble Navigation Limited (NASDAQ: TRMB) today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire for $280 million the Spectra Precision wholly owned businesses of Thermo Instrument Systems Inc. (Amex: THI), a Thermo Electron company (NYSE: TMO). Trimble will acquire Spectra Precision for approximately $200 million in cash and $80 million in seller debt financing. The transaction will be accounted for as a purchase. Closing of the transaction, expected at the end of second fiscal quarter of 2000, is subject to regulatory approval, financial and other usual conditions.
 
Spectra Precision is a leading provider of positioning solutions for the surveying, construction and agricultural markets, with locations in North America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. The company helped pioneer the development of positioning technology and has registered more than 100 patents worldwide.
 
Steven W. Berglund, president and chief executive officer of Trimble commented, "We are very pleased to announce the acquisition of Spectra Precision's business. It will broaden our capabilities in positioning technology and significantly increase the Company's international presence. We expect to see immediate benefits in the major emerging markets for technology in our agriculture and construction segments. Additionally, we anticipate integrating the Spectra Precision product platforms and distribution capabilities into the Trimble wireless information strategy. The acquisition is a major step in our program to establish ourselves as a leader in our committed growth areas of fleet and asset management, agriculture, construction and high volume component technology markets such as automotive and timing."
 
"At Spectra Precision, our goal has always been to provide the best in positioning solutions, from the design of our products, to their implementation with our customers," stated Karl Ramstrm, president and chief executive officer of Spectra Precision. "Trimble shares this vision and we feel that this relationship will better enable us to serve our customers and continue to act as a source of innovation in the markets that we serve."
 
This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current expectations that involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Other potential risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially are included in the SEC filings, including Form 10-K and Form 10-Q for Trimble.
 
About Spectra Precision
 
Spectra Precision, headquartered in Dayton, Ohio, is a leading provider of complete positioning solutions for the construction, surveying, and agricultural markets. Its products include construction lasers, machine control systems, optical survey instruments, and software. Sales for the last twelve months, including annualizing the results of Spectra Precision's joint venture with ZSP Geodetic Systems GmbH, which closed in September of 1999, were approximately $230 million USD. The business being acquired employs 1,300 people in 17 countries worldwide.
 
About Trimble
 
Founded in 1978, Trimble is a recognized worldwide leader in the development of innovative Global Positioning System (GPS) technology-based products for a wide range of applications. Today, these advanced solutions combine GPS with wireless communications and sophisticated software to meet demanding applications in environments ranging from agriculture and construction to asset management, automotive and timing. Headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., Trimble provides end-users and OEMs with leading edge solutions backed by global leadership in patents, exceptional experience and a reputation for excellence.
 
Investor Contact:   
Investor Relations of Trimble: 408-481-6914
Media Contact:   
LeaAnn McNabb of Trimble: 408-481-7808




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