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updated: 1/30/2013 10:41 AM

Navitas completes acquisition of A123 Systems business

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Globe Newswire

WOODRIDGE -- Navitas Systems LLC said it has finalized its acquisition of substantially all of the assets of A123 Systems' former Ann Arbor, Mich.-based government business, including U.S. military contracts.

Navitas Systems' bid won the defense-related assets of A123 and was approved by the US Bankruptcy Court on Dec. 11, 2012. Navitas' acquisition represents the final milestone in this transaction.

"Beyond the laboratory, intellectual property assets and government contracts we formally gained today, we're delighted that all of our offers to the eligible employees of the Ann Arbor, Michigan R&D facility were accepted," said Alan ElShafei, chairman and founder of Navitas Systems. "This enables Navitas to keep intact all of the world-class scientists and engineers necessary to develop and commercialize Nanophosphate lithium ion battery chemistry and other advanced battery technologies being developed for critical military and government applications."

In addition to keeping the Ann Arbor R&D team intact, Navitas has also hired several key engineers from A123's Livonia Automotive Group who were working on the productization of several government battery projects.

"Part of the excitement of the Ann Arbor team is because their research and development work now has a direct outlet to exciting military and other governmental applications which the Navitas team in Woodridge Illinois is cultivating," said Navitas Systems CEO Nancie ElShafei. "The second part of their excitement in accepting the Navitas offers stems from the leadership of Les Alexander, who will assume the role as General Manager of the newly titled organization, Navitas Advanced Solutions Group."

Alexander has deep experience in the lithium battery industry, and has been an integral part of the Ann Arbor R&D team since the days of T/J Technologies, a lithium battery technology firm which A123 Systems acquired in 2006.

Lithium battery safety has been in the news of late, with the recent incidents involving new Boeing jet aircraft. "Our scientists and engineers know that high performance can't come at the expense of safety," Alan ElShafei said. "We have some exciting new initiatives on our technology road map in this area. Navitas Systems will continue to

commit and dedicate the resources needed in working with industry leaders to reinforce safety as the top priority."

In addition to Navitas Systems, Elgin-based Wanxiang America Corp. announced it as acquired substantially all of the nongovernment business assets of A123 Systems through a transaction that has been approved by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.

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