ATS announces Photowatt Technologies management restructuring



    TSX: ATA

    CAMBRIDGE, ON, April 4 /CNW/ - ATS Automation Tooling Systems Inc. today
announced the restructuring of the executive team within Photowatt
Technologies, the Company's solar group. The restructuring follows the
withdrawal of Photowatt's IPO last week and is designed to strengthen
operational performance and advance initiatives within the solar group.
    Effective immediately, Gary Seiter has been appointed Chief Operating
Officer of Photowatt Technologies. Mr. Seiter joined Photowatt in 2006 as
Senior Vice President of Operations and Technology. Earlier in his career, he
served at Motorola Inc. in various engineering and management roles for almost
25 years, including Director of Manufacturing Operations. He holds a Bachelor
of Science and a Masters in Electrical Engineering, as well as an MBA in
finance.
    Also effective immediately, David Adams has been named Photowatt
Technologies' Senior Vice President, Corporate Development. Mr. Adams joined
Photowatt in 2006 as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. Mr.
Adams has over 25 years of experience and previously served as Senior Vice
President and Chief Financial Officer of SR Telecom, Vice President, Finance
and Administration at CAE Electronics Ltd. and Treasurer of CAE Inc. Mr. Adams
holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Finance degree and is a Chartered Accountant.
    Also announced today is the departure of Silvano Ghirardi as President
and Chief Executive Officer of Photowatt Technologies.
    In commenting on this management restructuring, Ron Jutras, ATS President
and Chief Executive Officer said: "Strategically, we remain committed to
establishing Photowatt as a standalone, self-funding business. Operationally,
our immediate priorities are to maximize the value of the new integrated
capacity we have just added at Photowatt France, further validate our refined
metallurgical silicon strategy, and advance Photowatt's strategic
relationships in R&D and silicon supply. Gary and David already have a sound
understanding of Photowatt and valuable experience and business skills in high
tech manufacturing. I believe they will be important contributors to our plans
to strengthen Photowatt."

    About ATS
    ATS Automation Tooling Systems Inc. provides innovative, custom designed,
built and installed manufacturing solutions to many of the world's most
successful companies. Founded in 1978, ATS uses its industry-leading knowledge
and global capabilities to serve the sophisticated automation systems' needs
of multinational customers in healthcare, computer/electronics, automotive and
consumer products. Through its solar business, ATS participates in the growing
solar energy industry. It also leverages its many years of repetitive
manufacturing experience and skills to produce, in high volume, precision
components and subassemblies and to answer the specialized repetitive
equipment manufacturing requirements of customers. ATS employs approximately
3,500 people at 25 manufacturing facilities in Canada, the United States,
Europe, southeast Asia and China. The Company's shares are traded on the
Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol ATA.

    Note to Readers
    This press release contains certain statements that constitute
forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable securities laws
("forward-looking statements"). Such forward-looking statements involve known
and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual
results, performance or achievements of ATS, or developments in ATS's business
or in its industry, to differ materially from the anticipated results,
performance, achievements or developments expressed or implied by such
forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include all disclosure
regarding possible events, conditions or results of operations that is based
on assumptions about future economic conditions and courses of action.
Forward-looking statements may also include, without limitation, any statement
relating to future events, conditions or circumstances. ATS cautions you not
to place undue reliance upon any such forward-looking statements, which speak
only as of the date they are made. Forward-looking statements relate to, among
other things, the strengthening of operational performance and advancement of
initiatives within the solar group; strategic commitment to establish
Photowatt as a standalone, self funding business; maximizing the value of the
new integrated capacity; further validation of the refined metallurgical
silicon strategy; advancement of Photowatt's strategic relationships in R&D
and silicon supply; and contributions to be made by solar executives. The
risks and uncertainties that may affect forward-looking statements include,
among others; general market performance; market performance within the solar
sector; ability to secure required funding for the solar business; performance
of ATS's solar business; whether or not Photowatt, Clean Venture 21
Corporation and Fujipream Corporation will conclude a definitive agreement
related to advancing sphere-based solar technology; risks involved in
successfully developing and commercializing sphere-based solar technology on a
cost-effective basis, including whether or not technical solutions exist, are
available, can be discovered, and are economically feasible, and potential
delays in finding technical solutions; problems with the equipment used in the
optical fused powder ("OFP") process; unforeseen problems with Photowatt
France's use of OFP silicon produced by the Spheral Solar technology and/or
refined metallurgical silicon; the risk that desired cell efficiencies
relating to refined metallurgical grade silicon technology cannot be achieved
and/or that the market is unreceptive to lower efficiency cells and as a
result it is not an economically viable alternative to the use of conventional
solar grade silicon; equipment, labour or other issues that may arise with
respect to the Spheral Solar technology being used in conversion of silicon
for Photowatt International S.A.S.; reversal of current silicon supply
arrangements, inability to finalize agreements, strategic partnerships, or
alliances to provide for R&D initiatives and/or silicon supply and other
problems that may be encountered with silicon supply sources; potential for
silicon prices to decline in the face of long-term silicon supply
arrangements; ability to achieve lower silicon usage relative to conventional
solar technology; possibility that selling price increases and improvements in
production efficiencies will not be obtained and/or, if they are, will not be
sufficient to offset higher silicon costs and shortages; the cost and
availability of silicon, including silicon powder and fines, and other raw
materials and certain specialized manufacturing tools and fixtures used in the
production of the solar business' products; the successful expansion of
production capability and adoption of new production processes; the extent of
market demand for solar products such as those developed by the solar
business; the availability and timing of government subsidies for solar
products, the development of superior or alternative technologies to those
developed by the solar business; and other risks detailed from time to time in
ATS's filings with Canadian provincial securities regulators, including ATS's
Management's Discussion and Analysis, Consolidated Financial Statements,
Annual Report and Annual Information Form for the fiscal year ended March 31,
2006. Forward-looking statements are based on management's current plans,
estimates, projections, beliefs and opinions, and ATS does not undertake any
obligation to update forward-looking statements should assumptions related to
these plans, estimates, projections, beliefs and opinions change.

    %SEDAR: 00002017E




For further information:

For further information: Carl Galloway, Vice President and Treasurer,
ATS, Gerry Beard, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, ATS, (519)
653-6500


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