Ballard Claims Investment from DaimlerChrysler and Ford

December 19, 2004 by Jeff Shepard

Ballard Power Systems Inc. (Vancouver, BC, Canada) has exercised its right to claim a $55 million investment from DaimlerChrysler AG (Stuttgart, Germany) and Ford Motor Co. (Dearborn, MI), part of an agreement signed last December 31, 2003. DaimlerChrysler will buy 2.4 million common shares of Ballard at $12.34 each for a cost of $30 million. Ford will buy about two million shares for $25 million.

Ballard reached an agreement on July 8 with the automakers for the share purchase. Ballard said it expected to close the share sale early next month. Ford, DaimlerChrysler and other auto makers, under regulatory pressure to reduce pollution, are developing fuel cells as a potential replacement for gasoline-powered internal-combustion engines. As part of the July agreement, Ford and DaimlerChrysler agreed to increase their investment in Ballard. In addition to the share purchase, DaimlerChrysler and Ford committed $58 million to Ballard for the development of a new line of fuel cells and electronic drives.