Marubeni Corporation to become the exclusive sales agent for Home Therapy Portable Liquid Oxygen in Japan

Apr. 28. 2004
Marubeni Corporation

The Business Incubation Department of Marubeni Corporation has entered into an agreement with Penox Technologies, Inc., a US company manufacturing and selling respiratory supplies, to become the exclusive sales agent of Penox's liquid oxygen product in Japan.

<Home Therapy Market in Japan>
The needs for therapy at home are rapidly growing in order to reduce the nation's huge medical fees. Home oxygen therapy, which was granted medical reimbursements earlier than other home therapies, has grown especially and the number of patients recently surpassed one hundred thousand.
There are two components to the hardware used in home oxygen therapy, an oxygen concentrator and a liquid oxygen reservoir, both with portable units for outdoor use.

Until recently the use of liquid oxygen systems has been limited due to a lower level of medical reimbursement relative to oxygen concentrators. In addition, high pressure gas regulation restricts the refilling of gas at the patient's home, and therefore, the service provider has to take home the empty reservoir each time which creates delivery problems. However, since there are several significant advantages offered by Penox's unique and proprietary system, including no noise or vibrations, power-savings, and the delivery of 100% pure oxygen to the patient with no adverse tastes or smells, the growth in the number of users of liquid oxygen systems is expected to be fast.

Penox has developed the newest ultra-lightweight portable liquid oxygen unit named "Escort" and its sales are rapidly growing in the US. The characteristics of this product are as follows: very compact and lightweight; equipped with an advanced electronic pulsing unit which reliably and precisely delivers 16.5CC of oxygen per breath to ensure proper patient therapy; designed to last up to 8 hours on a single fill; easy switchover to continuous flow mode; and a capacity of 6Lpm. These features extend the patient's ability to stay outdoors for longer periods than existing systems offering a significant improvement to the user's quality of life.

After receiving permission from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, Marubeni Corporation will launch sales of this product. Marubeni Corporation expects Penox's liquid oxygen product to generate a billion dollars in Japanese sales within the next few years.

Marubeni Corporation and Penox Technologies, Inc., expect to strengthen their alliance further by working together in additional areas of the home-based healthcare market in the future.

<Marubeni Business Incubation Dept.'s Strategy>
The Business Incubation Department was established in April 2001 to develop and nurture new business for the future of Marubeni. The Department targets new and promising areas such as biotechnology, nanotechnology and other growth fields that are generating commercial applications for a broad cross-section of industries. For example, in the field of advanced medical and health care applications, the department has established a sole selling joint venture company for Given Imaging's capsule endoscope, and is working together with Nagase Co., Ltd., Iwatani International Corp., and Nichido Fire & Marine Insurance Co. on the home oxygen business.

The Business Incubation Department will continue to emphasize home medical treatment as a highly significant growth area and is working to introduce additional promising technologies to Japan, including a home dialysis system, a non-invasive device to measure blood glucose levels, and a range of diagnostic technologies for the treatment of sleep apnea.

<Penox Technologies, Inc.>
Chairman: Sidney Guller
Head office: St. Louis, Missouri, USA
Incorporated: early 80's

Penox Technologies, Inc. is a member of The Respiratory Group or TRG, which is the only distributor/manufacturer offering all 3 modalities of oxygen delivery: Compressed Gas Cylinders, Liquid Oxygen Systems and Oxygen Concentrators. (www.respiratorygroup.com)

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