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London, Ontario -- The Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) is making a minority equity investment in Executive Manufacturing Technologies Inc. of London, Ontario.

Executive Manufacturing Technologies makes VisualPlant™, an off-the-shelf software solution that allows manufacturers to track plant floor production in real-time over a web browser. AMR calls this technology Enterprise Manufacturing Intelligence (EMI) and it can save manufacturers hundreds of thousands of dollars by accurately identifying sources of production constraints and downtime.

Today's investment by Ford follows the purchase of VisualPlant™ for three of its auto plants. Ford will receive Class A Preferred Shares in exchange for their equity investment. The deal closed on April 9, 2001 and it completes the first round of venture capital financing for Executive Manufacturing Technologies. The company has already secured $5.5-million in venture capital financing from four Canadian firms.

More than 20 auto plants have purchased VisualPlant™. According to the AMR Outlook: Enterprise Manufacturing Intelligence (EMI) -- The Next Generation PIMS, January, 2001, "the EMI market is expected to grow by at least 25 per cent."

"We think the investment by Ford is a great endorsement for VisualPlant™," said Dennis Cocco, CEO, Executive Manufacturing Technologies. "Ford recognizes that if they can save money in their facilities, VisualPlant™ will appeal to lots of other manufacturers looking to save money by increasing production efficiency."

"We are impressed by the functionality VisualPlant™ provides and feel it integrates well with the Ford production system and our plant floor IT strategy," said Jim Buczkowski, Director of Manufacturing and Supply Chain IT, Ford Motor Company. "We believe this is an industry leading product and I am excited about the opportunity it will provide Ford."

Ford is joining an investor group lead by Ventures West Management Inc. The Canadian Science and Technology Growth Fund, Bank of Montreal Capital Corporation and GATX/MM Venture Finance Partnership are also part of the investor consortium.

More information about VisualPlant™ and Executive Manufacturing Technologies can be obtained by visiting the company's web site at or by calling Kevin Putnam at (416) 537-1128.

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