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Exide Technologies Announces Plans for Alliance With NorthStar Battery, LLC

/ Source: GlobeNewswire

MILTON, Ga., Nov. 1, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Exide Technologies, (Nasdaq:XIDE) (), a global leader in stored electrical-energy solutions and the manufacturer and marketer of the Official Battery of NASCAR®, announces plans for a new collaboration, focused on the transportation aftermarket, with NorthStar Battery Company, LLC. Exide is making the announcement in conjunction with its participation at this year's Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX) in Las Vegas. NorthStar Battery Company, based in Springfield, Mo., is a global manufacturer of high-quality, absorbed glass mat (AGM) lead-acid engine start batteries for automobile, marine, and heavy-duty transportation applications as well as related standby power systems for industrial applications in the telecom, commercial, and other specialty end markets.

Plans call for Exide to work with NorthStar to provide sales, marketing and distribution expertise for targeted products for the transportation aftermarket beginning in 2011. Under the planned collaboration, a line of premium, high quality, engine-start NorthStar®-branded and produced AGM products will be incorporated into Exide's strong portfolio of battery offerings for automobile, marine and commercial applications. The two companies anticipate building this relationship upon execution of a formal agreement. 

"Exide envisions its relationship with NorthStar Battery Company to be an exciting collaboration of true intellectual partners – one that could bring together Exide's strong legacy of AGM technology development, dynamic sales and marketing programs, and extensive branch service network capabilities together with the innovative, entrepreneurial manufacturing proficiency of NorthStar Battery Company," said Bruce Cole, President, Transportation – Americas for Exide Technologies. "This collaboration would also be expected to support Exide's position as a leading global provider of innovative products and services across segments, customers, and technologies." 

Exide plans to market the NorthStar®-branded AGM product line as an ultra-premium, thin-plate offering – a strategy intended to expand the Company's existing transportation battery portfolio and deliver a number of unique design features specifically targeted to high performance vehicles operating in demanding conditions. Exide believes these batteries would be well-suited for vehicles including emergency responders, commercial fleets and marine vessels, sports and luxury cars, larger SUVs and trucks.  

"In addition to increasing the breadth of our transportation battery offering, we believe a partnership with NorthStar demonstrates that Exide places high emphasis on serving customers in a rapidly changing marketplace," said Cole. "Offering an extensive lineup of AGM product choices under one distribution network is a way to extend product coverage across a broad range of applications and consumer needs."

Exide and AGM Industry Trends           

Exide is working on the advancement of multiple technologies – including AGM – that may enable new product platforms – for implementation during the next several years, including domestically manufactured advanced lead-acid AGM batteries. Supported by a $34.3 million grant from the Department of Energy, Exide is building two AGM configurations: a spiral wound absorbed glass mat (AGM) design and a flat plate AGM design – to help today's conventional vehicles better handle the high demands of complex accessories and to address the increasing demand for micro-hybrid vehicles, idle-reduction commercial vehicles, and other strategic market segments. The collaboration with NorthStar would enable the company to provide a larger portfolio of advanced lead-acid products to service a wide range of consumer needs. 

"NorthStar Battery's overriding goals of manufacturing the highest quality, high performance engine-start batteries and continuing to develop innovative, leading-edge products fit extremely well with Exide's core operational values, technological expertise and dynamic strategies in serving the original equipment and aftermarket sectors," said Jerry Hoffman, President, NorthStar Battery. "This collaboration would be the ideal environment to fuel our collective abilities to explore business development opportunities in AGM and other emerging technologies."

Exide at AAPEX 2010

The annual Automotive Aftermarket Products Expo (AAPEX), jointly sponsored by the Automotive Aftermarket Suppliers Association (AASA) and the Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA), represents the $395 billion global motor vehicle aftermarket. This year's event will feature more than 2,000 exhibitors and is expected to attract nearly 120,000 visitors from 124 countries around the world. More than 106,000 professionals – including automotive parts wholesale distributors, retailers, service chains, jobbers and service professionals from around the globe participate in Automotive Aftermarket Industry Week (AAIW) in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

At AAPEX 2010, the Exide Transportation Americas business division will represent the Company at an exhibit in space # 4035. The Exide display at this year's show is designed around the Company's position and tagline 'Start Positive. Stay Positive.®' – illustrating Exide's capabilities to go above and beyond to deliver category growth.  In addition to learning about new offerings, including the expanded Exide® NASCAR® Extreme™ line, visitors will have the opportunity to meet with members of the Company's Transportation Americas team to discuss Exide's progress and related Company developments.

The AAPEX 2010 show opens at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, Nevada on November 2 and runs through November 4. More information is available at , , and at .

About Exide Technologies

Exide Technologies, with operations in more than 80 countries, is one of the world's largest producers and recyclers of lead-acid batteries. The Company's four global business groups -- Transportation Americas, Transportation Europe and Rest of World, Industrial Energy Americas and Industrial Energy Europe and Rest of World -- provide a comprehensive range of stored electrical energy products and services for industrial and transportation applications.

Transportation markets include original-equipment and aftermarket automotive, heavy-duty truck, agricultural and marine applications, and new technologies for hybrid vehicles and automotive applications. Industrial markets include network power applications such as telecommunications systems, electric utilities, railroads, photovoltaic (solar-power related) and uninterruptible power supply (UPS), and motive-power applications including lift trucks, mining and other commercial vehicles.

Further information about Exide, including its financial results, are available at .

The Exide Technologies logo is available at

Forward-Looking Statements

Except for historical information, this news release may be deemed to contain "forward-looking" statements. The Company desires to avail itself of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the "Act") and is including this cautionary statement for the express purpose of availing itself of the protection afforded by the Act.

Examples of forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to statements regarding the terms and conditions of the expected collaboration, including, without limitation, Exide's obligations in respect thereof and products and services to be provided by NorthStar, the anticipated benefits of the collaboration and expect business opportunities that may be available to Exide and the date on which NorthStar intends to begin providing products and services to Exide.

Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from these forward looking statements include, but are not limited to, the following general factors such as: Exide's inability to negotiate the terms of the collaboration on commercially acceptable terms or at all, the ability of the parties to work collaboratively and to fulfill their respective obligations in a satisfactory manner. Exide's ability to execute its business strategy with respect to the collaboration and those risk factors described in the Company's fiscal 2010 Form 10-K filed on June 2, 2010.

The Company cautions each reader of this news release to carefully consider those factors set forth above.  Such factors have, in some instances, affected and in the future could affect the ability of the Company to achieve its projected results and may cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed herein.

CONTACT: Exide Technologies Media Contact: Susan Jaramillo, Senior Director, Communications 203/699-9133 Investor Contact: Carol Knies, Senior Director of Investor Relations 678/566-9316