"ABB has effectively extended to Braintech's products its brand and credibility as the global leader in robotic innovation, sales and service," said Owen Jones, Braintech Chief Executive Officer. "With the ABB TrueView marketing program, the sales force supporting Braintech's products grows from our Company's single salesperson to a total of 65 ABB sales professionals, plus ABB's channel partners. Far more prospective buyers will be exposed to Braintech's products, which will be presented as ABB-marketed, ABB-certified and ABB-supported. This is an extraordinary moment for our Company, arrived at after lengthy product development and years of joint field experience with ABB technical and sales personnel."
Thomas M. Stroin, Vice President of ABB's North American Robot Automation Business Unit, said, "We are proud to offer our customers this newest state-of-the-art flexible manufacturing solution. ABB and Braintech have developed a lean, multi-purpose, highly intelligent system that perfectly meshes with our customer's profit objectives. TrueView combines the power of a professionally architected eVF software platform, best of class guidance technologies and ABB's advanced robotic equipment in an integrated package that delivers reliability, flexibility and scalability."
TrueView fully engineered, proven systems will help customers achieve new levels of manufacturing efficiency and profitability. Boasting a 'Plug & Play', highly optimized communication and error handling interface between vision and robot systems, TrueView systems efficiently "see and react" in a changing factory environment, locating, inspecting, handling, transferring and assembling, all in a fully automated, flexible and accurate manner. TrueView delivers a wide range of benefits:
- Increases flexibility by handling variations (part position, type, style, quality) intelligently and in real time, allowing processing of multiple part types and styles in the same line, - Improves quality by preventing damage and contamination caused by manual handling; detecting defects through inline automated visual inspection of every part; and significantly reducing process variability; and - Reduces capital, operational and ergonomic costs by eliminating precision fixtures, dunnages and other custom positioning devices; increasing equipment utilization (a single robot is used to process multiple part styles without added investment); and reallocating labor to more productive tasks thereby eliminating ergonomic issues;
TrueView is the superior VGR solution because it is built on Braintech's eVF software platform, which was specially designed for VGR. Additionally:
- eVF provides unprecedented flexibility and configurability, - eVF's common intuitive user interface and operation makes technical training transferable from one solution to the next, - eVF ensures commonality across installations and across guidance technology types (2D, 2.5D, 3D, single and multi camera), - eVF features true Single Camera 3D capability, - eVF's Autocal3D(TM) feature automatically performs camera-robot calibration in under 5 minutes (traditional manual vision calibration can take 5 hours and requires expert technicians), - eVF's AutoTrain(TM) feature eliminates the need for part CAD models or manual measurement, - TrueView is COTS (complete-off-the-shelf) compliant, reducing initial cost and complexity while increasing reliability and maintainability; and - eVF's integrated real-time remote support significantly increases system uptime.
"ABB's presentation of VGR as an integrated product is the critical step that moves Braintech's products from the realm of early market innovators to the much larger mainstream market," said James M. Dara, Braintech Vice President of Sales/General Manager of North American Operations. "The automotive industry is emphasizing production flexibility as never before. To trim costs and speed delivery, each production line is being re-engineered to handle a variety of models and components with a minimum of changeover downtime. The industry is committed to extensive robotic automation, but the old way - using 'blind' robots that perform an identical function over and over - has proven too costly and too inflexible. Braintech has responded to this critical need by building two key enabling technologies: its highly reliable common software platform eVisionFactory that acts as the backbone of all systems and its proprietary 3D-Vision Guided Robotic technology, Single Camera 3D(TM). These products, now incorporated into ABB's TrueView system, enable systems that behave eerily human-like, observing and reacting to changes in part styles and positions on the factory floor. Repeat orders from Fortune 1000 customers like Ford and GM confirm our product's efficiency, ease of use and reliability."
About ABB ---------
ABB's Robotic, Automotive and Manufacturing group is a leading supplier of robots, robotic systems and automation systems to the automotive, manufacturing and consumer industries. With more than 120,000 robots installed worldwide and more than 5,000 employees, ABB is a global leader in flexible factory automation.
ABB is a leader in power and automation technologies that enable utility and industry customers to improve performance while lowering environmental impact. The ABB Group of companies operates in 100 countries and employs about 115,000 people worldwide. With an installed base of more than 120,000 robots, the Automation Technologies division employs about 56,000 and posted 2002 revenues of US $9.9 Billion.
About Braintech, Inc. ( http://www.braintech.com/) -----------------------------------------
Braintech's VGR technologies are revolutionizing manufacturing by giving industrial robots the "eyes" to handle and assemble parts with a high degree of consistent quality and productivity. Braintech's scientific capabilities, engineering expertise and commitment to support are embedded in the Company's VGR software product called "eVF(TM)" and is used to develop, operate and support VGR solutions. To date, Braintech's VGR solutions have been installed at Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Delphi, TI Automotive Group and Toyota.
SC3D, eVF and eVisionFactory are registered trademarks of Braintech Canada, Inc.
ABB and TrueView are trademarks of ABB, Inc.
Statements in this document (as well as information included in oral statements or other written statements made or to be made by Braintech, Inc.) that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements, including any statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions regarding the future. Forward-looking statements in this news release include statements regarding the Company's belief that it has pioneered 3D-Vision Guided Robotics for manufacturers, that the sales force will grow to 65 sales professionals, that more prospective buyers will be exposed to Braintech's products, that the ABB/Braintech system meshes with customer's profit objectives, that TrueView systems will help customers achieve new levels of manufacturing efficiency and profitability, that TrueView delivers a wide range of benefits including increasing flexibility, improving quality and reducing capital, operational, and maintenance costs, that TrueView is a superior VGR solution, that eVF provides unprecedented flexibility and configurability, that eVF integrated real-time remote support significantly increases system uptime, and that our technologies are revolutionizing manufacturing. It is important to note that actual outcomes and the Company's actual results could differ materially from those in such forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include risks and uncertainties such as technical difficulties in developing the products; competition from other suppliers of similar products; pricing that may not be acceptable to potential markets; problems with the transport of the products produced; failure for a market to develop for the products; the inability of the Company to finance its obligations under agreements; the failure of the Automotive sector to grow at the rate thought likely; and many other known and unknown factors that affect the technology and automotive industry in general. Readers should also refer to the risk disclosures outlined in the Company's annual report on Form 10-KSB for the 2003 fiscal year and the Company's quarterly reports on Form 10-QSB filed from time to time with the SEC.
For more information, please contact: Braintech, Inc. Jim Dara, VP Sales, GM North American Operations 248-219-9400 / Email Contact or Elite Financial Communications Group Stephanie Noiseux, EVP of Client Relations 407-585-1080 / Email Contact