Press release issued July 20: R.J. O'Brien & Associates, LLC (R.J. O'Brien) and Iowa Grain Company, two of the most respected futures industry brokers, today announced they have signed a definitive merger agreement combining the two companies. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed and it is expected to close on or before August 31st, 2007. "The clear benefit for Iowa Grain's customers will be increased access to global markets and a diverse set of product offerings," said Michael Brinati, CEO and President of Iowa Grain Company. "More importantly, we will deliver these new product offerings with the same commitment to service that has defined our premier standing in the industry." "Our two businesses share a similar culture; both have demonstrated a commitment to client service and innovation, and share the same vision of the industry going forward. This merger between R.J. O'Brien and Iowa Grain Company is an ideal fit," said Gerry Corcoran, Chairman of R.J. O'Brien. "We did this transaction because we saw real opportunities for our clients and employees." "Both Iowa Grain and R.J. O'Brien have been at the heart of the futures industry for generations," said Colleen Mitchell, President of R.J. O'Brien. "The merging of the two firms will result in a stronger company that will be able to provide an even higher level of service, research and technology." The combined companies will be the largest guarantor of introducing brokers in the world and is committed to offering the most extensive suite of IB products and services in the industry. Iowa Grain Company's owners will retain a minority interest in the company. R.J. O'Brien was advised by the law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP. Iowa Grain Company was advised by the law firm DLA Piper US LLP.