22 December 2005  Bert De Graeve to succeed Julien De Wilde as CEO  

The Board of Directors of NV Bekaert SA has decided that Bert De Graeve, currently Chief Financial and Administration Officer, will succeed Julien De Wilde, whose mandate as Chief Executive Officer will expire on 10 May 2006. On the same date, the Board of Directors will make a proposal to the General Meeting of Shareholders to appoint Bert De Graeve as Executive Director.

Baron Buysse, Chairman of Bekaert, announced: “With Bert De Graeve as its future CEO, Bekaert has made a clear choice for continuity. His wealth of international experience and the obvious expertise he has demonstrated both previously and in his present function with Bekaert, guarantee the further expansion of our company and the creation of shareholder value.”

Julien De Wilde: “Over the past few years, as Chief Executive Officer, I have managed, along with the Bekaert Group Executive, to successfully deploy our strategy of sustainable profitable growth. I am convinced that Bert, together with all the Bekaert colleagues worldwide, is well positioned to further strengthen the company's global position as a market and technological leader.”

Bert De Graeve: “It is both a great honour and a great challenge for me to build on the success story that is Bekaert. Along with the Bekaert Group Executive and the joint efforts of all the Bekaert employees, I shall strive to offer our customers around the world the products and services that give them the edge in their markets.”