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DURA Automotive Systems Announces Global Reorganization and Other Business Updates


- New Global Business Divisions & Executive Appointments
- $1 Billion of New Business Awards Year-To-Date
- Financial Reporting Schedule

DURA Automotive Systems, Inc. (Pink Sheets: DRRAQ) today announced a comprehensive restructuring of the company into four global business units, aimed at strengthening its competitive position worldwide. In addition, DURA announced several other significant corporate events, including $1 billion in new business awards and the planned filing timeline of its regulatory financial information.

“Macro-economic conditions affecting the global automotive industry have dramatically altered the way automotive suppliers need to do business around the world,” said Tim Leuliette, appointed DURA’s president and chief executive officer on July 17, 2008, following the company’s emergence from Chapter 11 reorganization. “Today’s announcement of our move away from a regional structure into four global business units will further enhance our efficiency and ability to compete as one global company. We are confident these actions will strengthen our ability to serve our worldwide customers and grow our business. DURA is now a lean, globally balanced technology leader.”

With its emergence from Chapter 11, DURA accomplished one of the most comprehensive business restructurings in the automotive industry. By the end of 2008, the company expects to complete the last of its previously announced plans to close or exit 16 manufacturing facilities worldwide. These closures, combined with the elimination of $1.2 billion, or 85 percent, of the company’s debt and a 90 percent reduction in cash interest expense, as part of the reorganization plan approved earlier this year, have laid the groundwork for a new, lean and globally competitive DURA.

Global Reorganization

Today, the company is announcing the next step in its transformation. Effective January 1, 2009, DURA will be organized into four global product line divisions replacing the current seven regional business units. DURA’s four new global divisions and executive leadership are:

* Cable Systems, headquartered in Rochester Hills, Mich., is one of the world’s largest producers of light and heavy-duty automotive control cables. The Cable Systems Division has operations in Germany, Romania, the Czech Republic, Portugal, United States, Mexico and China. Leading the division will be Al Malizia, as vice president and general manager. Malizia joins the company after retiring from Metaldyne Corporation, where he served as vice president and general manager of North American Chassis Operations.

* Shifter Systems, headquartered in Dusseldorf, Germany, is the largest supplier of automatic, manual and shift-by-wire transmission shift systems in the world, with operations in Germany, Romania, the Czech Republic, France, Portugal, Russia, United States, India and China. Martin Becker has been named vice president and general manager of DURA’s Shifter Systems Division. Becker was previously vice president and general manager of DURA’s Control Systems Europe.

* Glass & Trim Systems, headquartered in Rochester Hills, Mich., is a leading provider of automotive exterior metal and plastic trim, and stationary and moving glass window systems, with operations in Germany, the Czech Republic, United States, Mexico and China. Tim Horn becomes vice president and general manager of DURA’s Glass & Trim Systems Division. He was previously DURA’s vice president and general manager, Body & Glass North America.

* Structural & Safety Systems, headquartered in Plettenberg, Germany, is an integral OEM partner of body-in-white and structural components, as well as mechanical safety assemblies, with operations in Germany, United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Spain, Mexico, United States and China. Franz Joseph Feldhaus is named vice president and general manager of DURA’s Structural & Safety Systems Division. He previously was DURA’s vice president and general manager, Body & Glass Systems Europe.

DURA’s four operating divisions supply Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, BMW, Brilliance, Chery, Chrysler, Daimler, Fiat, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Jaguar, Land Rover, Mahindra, NedCar, NUMMI, Porsche, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Renault-Nissan, SAIC, Ssangyong, Tata, Toyota and Volkswagen with nearly $2 billion of products annually. In 2008, the company anticipates generating approximately 59 percent of its revenues from Europe, 33 percent from North America and 8 percent from the rest of the world.

DURA’s sales and engineering centers in the United States, Germany, France, Japan, Brazil, Russia, India and China will serve the company’s worldwide customer base. DURA professionals will continue to provide customers with convenient design and engineering expertise close to their development locations. Customers will also benefit from consistent and high-quality manufacturing processes when partnering with DURA on multi-regional automotive platforms.

Other Executive Appointments

As part of its global reorganization, DURA also announced the following leadership appointments:

- Francois Stouvenot is now group vice president of global sales. He was previously vice president of European sales.

- Dave Klein becomes vice president of North American sales. Klein formerly served as vice president and general manager of Shifter and Cable operations in North America.

- Tim Mann is named vice president of global procurement. He was previously vice president of North American purchasing.

- Eric Rundall becomes group director of corporate development. Rundall had been director of European finance.

New Business Awards

Year-to-date, and following the completion of a successful financial restructuring, DURA has already been awarded an estimated $1 billion in new business contracts, based on the expected program durations. Awards on global platforms with Europe and Asia automakers are on a record pace.

“DURA’s low-cost manufacturing footprint combined with exceptional product technology has resulted in a winning proposition for customers,” said Leuliette. “Our significantly lowered debt load and strong balance sheet will allow DURA to increase engineering and globalization investments to further improve our value to the world’s leading automakers.”

Included in the 2008 awards were significant global contracts in manual and automatic gear shifter systems including fully electronic shifters, cable systems, the industry’s first power-heated sliding window, exterior trim and structural and safety systems including high strength space frame components. The company’s strong European presence is providing the opportunity for significant growth as European car models are targeted for North American production.


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