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Service Corporation International Announces the Sale of Certain Loans Of Provident Services, Inc. to Bellwether Investment Corporation

HOUSTON, Aug. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- Service Corporation International (NYSE: SRV), the world's largest funeral and cemetery company, announced today it has executed a transaction to sell a portion of the core portfolio of loans associated with Provident Services, Inc., the Company's lending subsidiary, to Bellwether Investment Corporation of Dallas, Texas. The sale transaction is expected to generate cash proceeds including related tax benefits of approximately $95 million. Consistent with the Company's strategic plans, the cash proceeds received today will be used to further reduce the Company's debt. The Company will continue to hold and collect interest and principal payments on the remaining portion of the Provident portfolio estimated to have a face value of approximately $57 million with a weighted average interest rate of 8.6%.

Commenting on the progress of non-core asset sales, SCI Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, R. L. Waltrip, stated: "We are making excellent progress on the execution of our plan to sell non-core assets and businesses to generate cash and reduce the Company's debt. With the execution of this sale of a portion of the Provident loans, the previously closed sale transactions and the anticipated execution of the sales of the Company's insurance operations expected by October 31, 2000, we will have produced more than $435 million in after tax cash proceeds in 2000 available to reduce debt. This amount significantly exceeds our original target of $200 to $300 million expected from sales of non-core assets and is at the high end of our revised target of $200 to $500 million in total after tax cash proceeds available for debt reduction."

Cautionary Statement on Forward-Looking Statements

This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are based on assumptions that the Company believes are reasonable. These statements are not, however, guarantees of future performance and actual results may differ materially. The most important factors that may cause actual results to differ from the Company's expectations are the risks associated with the closing of the Company's insurance operations sale transactions including receipt of the appropriate regulatory approvals. Other important factors that may cause actual results to differ from the Company's expectations are listed in the Company's second quarter 2000 Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Service Corporation International is the largest provider of death care services in the world. As of June 30, 2000, SCI affiliates operated 3,809 funeral service locations, 581 cemeteries and 201 crematoria in 20 countries on five continents.

Other Service Corporation International and press releases are available through Company News On-Call by fax, (800) 758-5804, extension 104532, or at http://www.prnewswire.com .
SOURCE Service Corporation International
Web site: http: //www.sci-corp.com
Company News On-Call: http: //www.prnewswire.com/comp/104532.html or fax, 800-758-5804, ext. 104532
CONTACT: investors, Debbie E. Fisher, Director/Investor Relations, 713-525-9088, or Eric D. Tanzberger, Vice President/Investor Relations, Assistant Corporate Controller, 713-525-7768, or media, Terry Hemeyer, Managing Director/Corporate Communications, 713-525-5497, all of Service Corporation International