Siemens VDO Automotive Corp. has signed an agreement to acquire Ballard Power Systems Inc.’s Electric Drive Business located in Dearborn, Mich. Ballard Power Systems Corp., a subsidiary of Ballard Power Systems Inc., develops and manufactures electric drive technology for fuel cell vehicles. Pending final approvals, the acquisition is projected to be completed in early 2007 and will include Ballard Power Systems Corp.’s research, development and manufacturing operation in Dearborn, impacting approximately 80 highly specialized personnel. “This acquisition elevates Siemens VDO’s hybrid business to a new dimension, thereby securing a more competitive position for the company and its employees,” said Siemens VDO Group Vice President Dr. Klaus Egger. “By becoming part of Siemens VDO, a recognized world leader in automotive electronics, this acquisition will place us in a better position to capitalize on new business opportunities in the $14 billion (by 2015) global hybrid electric vehicle market.” Upon transfer of ownership, Ballard Power System Corp. Dearborn-based employees will join Siemens VDO’s Powertrain Electronics and Drivetrain division. The Dearborn location will serve as the organizations’ North American Center of Expertise for the advancement of power electronics, motor design and systems for electrical drives for customer hybrid and fuel cell vehicle applications. “Together with our Alliance partners, DaimlerChrysler AG and Ford Motor Co., we look forward to working with Siemens VDO on next-generation fuel cell vehicle development programs,” said Ballard Power Systems Inc.’s President and CEO John Sheridan. According to Sheridan, Siemens VDO’s considerable electrical engineering expertise is an excellent fit with the Dearborn electric drive business. Siemens VDO is an international automotive electronics and mechatronic supplier.