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Ballard partners with Dantherm, Danfoss to create leading European fuel cell backup power capability

Canadian-based Ballard Power Systems has acquired a controlling interest in Dantherm Power in Denmark, in a partnership with Danish co-investors Danfoss A/S and Dantherm A/S. The joint investment and partnering support from Ballard, Danfoss and Dantherm is expected to result in accelerated development of fuel cell backup power applications across Europe.

Ballard Power Systems is investing US$6 million for a controlling interest in Dantherm Power, in two tranches between 2010 and 2012. Ballard will also provide knowledge and intellectual property related to the core polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell technology.

Dantherm Power develops clean energy backup power systems, utilizing Ballard hydrogen fuel cell technology, for telecom equipment suppliers including Motorola and Ericsson.

Dantherm Power will continue its current commercial initiatives, including sales of hydrogen-based products incorporating Ballard PEM fuel cell stacks. In addition to its cash investment, Dantherm A/S will continue to provide operational support and collaborative sales and marketing activities through its worldwide sales organization.

Danfoss A/S will invest cash, proprietary technology, expertise, and operational and commercial assistance through its network of 93 sites in 25 countries. Executives from the three companies will form a new board of directors for Dantherm Power.

‘Dantherm Power has a strong track record in fuel cell backup power systems in telecommunications, including the largest European fuel cell installation for TETRA emergency networks, as well as for telecom service providers,’ explains John Sheridan, President and CEO of Ballard.

Sheridan continues: ‘Through this Dantherm Power investment, Ballard will now be actively involved with delivery of complete backup power systems, in addition to providing fuel cell stacks and power modules to leading companies including IdaTech, Plug Power, Baxi Innotech, and ISE Corporation, in other markets.’

‘Dantherm Power is already supplying clean energy power products to some of our key customers, like Motorola,’ adds Torben Duer, President and CEO of Dantherm A/S, which is a manufacturing partner of Dantherm Power. ‘This investment will increase momentum behind fuel cell product development work at Dantherm Power, and will help accelerate growth of fuel cell power in the backup telecom market.’

Niels Christiansen, President and CEO of Danfoss A/S, is confident that this strategic co-investment with leading fuel cell developer Ballard and Dantherm creates a leading supplier of fuel cell power solutions.

‘We believe that this relationship will work well for our clean energy strategy, which today includes wind, solar and biofuels,’ says Christiansen. ‘We believe that fuel cell power can play an important role in our key markets, including renewable energy products and environmentally friendly heating.’

With this investment in Dantherm Power, Ballard will now be actively involved with the delivery of complete backup power systems for OEMs and other suppliers to the telecoms sector in Europe.

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