Ballard to Acquire AirGen Assets from Coleman

February 18, 2003 by Jeff Shepard

Ballard Power Systems Inc. (Vancouver, BC) and Coleman Powermate Inc. have entered into a memorandum of understanding whereby Ballard will purchase Coleman Powermate's AirGen™ fuel cell generator assets. Ballard will acquire all related inventory, tools and molds, software and intellectual property, and will develop its own sales, marketing and distribution strategy for the fuel cell generator.

The AirGen™, powered by Ballard's Nexa™ power module, was launched in December 2002 for industrial use as a portable power source or emergency backup power system. With the recent consolidation of the First Alert® and Coleman Powermate units of American Household Inc., the new management team has decided to focus its efforts on its traditional business lines.

"The AirGen™ fuel cell generator is an innovative and groundbreaking product," said Gwen Wisler, president and chief executive officer of First Alert/Powermate Inc. "Nevertheless, after a review of our product portfolio, it's clear that this product requires a different approach than our current go-to-market strategy. We are pleased that Ballard is taking the initiative to help take this product to the next level. We will work closely with Ballard to ensure a smooth transition."

Dennis Campbell, Ballard's president and chief operating officer, said, "We are pleased with the opportunity to take a more proactive role in the development and introduction of this exciting new product. Ballard will take the leadership in accelerating the availability and adoption of a commercial hydrogen storage solution by working directly with fuel canister suppliers, gas suppliers, the Department of Transportation and other regulatory bodies. We are developing our marketing plans, including branding and distribution strategies that will focus on working with various channels and channel partners to bring a consumer fuel cell product to market."