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Anytime I see upward movement in AMSC I search for relevant announcements that might explain why. This morning I found one that could be significant to shareholders. (I haven't put it in italics, because it is easier to read this way, but it is a direct quote.) You can find it here ( or on several other sites, including TMF.

American Superconductor Announces HTS Wire Distribution Agreement with Leading Korean Wire Manufacturer

WESTBOROUGH, Mass., Nov 27, 2001 (BUSINESS WIRE) --

KISWIRE, Ltd. To be Exclusive Distributor of AMSC's HTS Wire in Korea

American Superconductor Corporation (AMSC), a leading global supplier of superconductor products and power electronic converters for the electric power industry, today announced the signing of an agreement with Korean-based KISWIRE, Ltd. naming them the exclusive distributor of AMSC's HTS wire in Korea. Under the terms of the agreement, KISWIRE agrees to actively promote, sell and service AMSC's HTS wire in a variety of applications throughout Korea. AMSC retains the right to sell its HTS wire to other original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) outside Korea who might import their product to Korea. KISWIRE is a leading manufacturer of steel wire products for the automotive, ship building, and other industries.

"American Superconductor is recognized for its leadership in developing the best performing HTS wire in the industry," said Mr. Sang-Duk Han, managing director of KISWIRE, Ltd. "We are delighted to be the distributor of this leading-edge product in Korea, a country that is making a major investment in commercializing applications using HTS wires. We look forward to a long and prosperous relationship with American Superconductor."

KISWIRE will also be the distribution channel for AMSC's HTS wire into Korea's New Frontier Program, a $200 million initiative to develop and commercialize electric power applications such as motors, generators, and power cables using HTS wire. The program is being managed by the government-sponsored Korean Electrotechnology Research Institute (KERI). KISWIRE will distribute American Superconductor's HTS wire to participating companies developing products that will use the new superconductor wire.

"This agreement gives American Superconductor entrance to one of the top manufacturing markets in the world," said Greg Yurek, CEO of American Superconductor. "Our distribution agreement opens exciting new market opportunities for us and we look forward to working with KISWIRE and the New Frontier Program as they commercialize HTS technology in Korea."

For those of you (like me) who aren't familiar with KISWIRE,


Headquartered in Pusan, Korea, KISWIRE is one of the world's largest steel wire manufacturers for automotive, tires, ship building and other industrial uses. KISWIRE Group reported annual revenues of $500 million last year and has approximately 10 percent market share of the global tire cord business. Their manufacturing operations have been certified ISO9002, ISO14001, and QS9000 compliant. The company operates thirteen domestic and two foreign manufacturing facilities and has sales offices in Japan, the US, Europe and throughout the Asia Pacific region.

I bolded that last sentence to show the reach of this company. I can't tell from the Press Release whether American Superconductor's product will be used anywhere except in Korea. If so, that could make quite a difference in revenue.

It remains to be seen how this will translate into sales. Right now that's a real concern, since multiple targets have been missed this year, particularly with regard to SMES.


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