SunPower Names New CEO

SunPower Corporation has announced the appointment of Tom Werner as chief executive officer (CEO). Werner comes to SunPower from a position as CEO of Silicon Light Machines, a supplier of components for optical subsystems. Werner also brings to the job brand management experience with a range of companies in the electronics industry, such as 3Com and U.S. Robotics.

Sunnyvale, California – June 26, 2003 [] Werner is tasked with accelerating SunPower’s transition from a supplier of high-performance specialty products to a manufacturer of solar cells for a broad range of high-volume applications. Under Werner’s direction, Silicon Light Machines diversified from a designer and manufacturer of components for a single customer and application – Sony Corp. high-definition television displays – to a provider of optical devices for a variety of markets, including telecommunications, print and display-related products. Silicon Light Machines is a subsidiary of Cypress Semiconductor Corporation, which also holds an interest in SunPower. Cypress is sharing its expertise in technology development and high-volume manufacturing with SunPower, providing the solar cell company with a competitive advantage in a silicon-intensive, highly cost-sensitive business. SunPower, which has produced solar cells for a broad range of high-profile projects-such as the NASA Helios solar-powered aircraft, which flew to a record altitude of 96,863 feet-recently sampled its first high-volume product-the A-300 solar cell, the industry’s most-efficient, lowest-cost silicon cell. “SunPower has a team of talented individuals; a deep portfolio of intellectual property; and great financial and technical backing by Cypress,” Werner said. “These elements will provide us with a solid foundation in the process of building SunPower into a high-volume provider of high-performance, cost-efficient solar cells.” Separately, SunPower will announce the appointment of Peter Aschenbrenner as vice president of sales and marketing. Aschenbrenner comes to SunPower with 25 years of experience in sales and marketing leadership positions at photovoltaic companies including Siemens Solar and AstroPower. Aschenbrenner was instrumental in AstroPower’s IPO and its acquisition of Atersa, the company’s European subsidiary. SunPower Founder Dick Swanson, a 27-year veteran of the photovoltaics industry, will remain as SunPower’s president and chief technical officer, driving the SunPower product roadmap and leveraging his strengths in product development. Werner will be replaced as SLM president and CEO by Hal Zarem, who steps up from a position as SLM VP of sales and marketing. Zarem will report directly to Cypress’s Rodgers and SLM’s board of directors.
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