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ASHLAND COMPLETES ACQUISITION OF HERCULES

November 20, 2008
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Ashland Inc., Covington, KY, has announced the completion of its acquisition of Hercules Inc., Wilmington, DE. Each share of Hercules common stock outstanding was exchanged for $18.60 in cash and 0.093 of a share of Ashland common stock. Ashland now comprises a core of three specialty chemical businesses - paper and water technologies, specialty resins, and specialty additives and function ingredients - that are expected to generate approximately 75% of total EBITDA on a pro forma basis.

This is a landmark day for our combined employees, customers, shareholders and all those with whom we interact,” said James J. O’Brien, Ashland chairman and chief executive officer. “Together, we now begin working to build an exciting new future, confident that our people, technologies, products and services will drive our growth for years to come.”

For more information, visit www.ashland.com.

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