Ballard and GPU Expand Strategic Relationship

August 22, 2001 by Jeff Shepard

Ballard Power Systems Inc. (Canada) and GPU Inc. (Morristown, NJ) announced that their respective subsidiaries, Ballard Generation Systems (BGS) and GPU Diversified Holdings LLC, have restructured their relationship to allow for increased focus on the market and distribution aspects of commercializing fuel cell products for stationary applications.

In anticipation of the launching of commercial stationary power generators by 2003, BGS has appointed GPU as a non-exclusive distributor of Ballard stationary fuel cell power generators in the Northeast and North Central US. GPU plans to market Ballard fuel cell stationary power generators to both residential and commercial consumers of distributed-generation resources.

In addition, GPU Diversified Holdings will exchange its shares in BGS in return for Ballard Power Systems stock. Ballard Power Systems will receive GPU's 12.6 percent interest in Ballard Generation Systems in return for issuing GPU 1,366,063 common shares in Ballard Power Systems for a total value of $29.7 million.

"GPU was a founding partner with Ballard Power Systems when Ballard Generation Systems was created in 1996. We have worked well together over the past five years to understand the market requirements for fuel cell products. The time is now right to move that relationship from a partner in product development, to a partner in accessing the market for our products," said Jim Kirsch, president of Ballard Generation Systems. "We believe that building on the successful working relationship between GPU and Ballard will be a key part of bringing commercial Ballard fuel cell products to market."