Ener1 Group Hires Detroit Veteran to Evaluate Market for Lithium-ion Battery for Hybrid Cars

EnerDel is working closely with Japan-based ITOCHU Corporation and developing what may be the first HEV lithium-ion batteries to be mass manufactured in the U.S.

Published: 26-Jan-2006

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla., Jan. 26  -- Ener1 Group, a global investment company with operations in New York, Florida, and Moscow, announced today it has named financial and automotive industry veteran, Marshall S. Cogan to the position of Senior Strategic Advisor.

As of February 1st, 2006, Mr. Cogan will join the company in its New York office. This announcement follows the arrival of Charles Gassenheimer as Chief Executive Officer of Ener1 Group to lead the company's private equity division and expand its business in the areas of asset management including merchant banking services.

Mr. Cogan's task will be to assess Ener1 Group's 11 portfolio companies within its private equity division. He will join the boards of several of Ener1 Group's investments and help guide their strategies, including business development and merger & acquisition opportunities.

Mr. Cogan's depth of experience in the automotive industry will be extremely beneficial to Ener1 Group major asset Ener1, Inc (OTC: ENEI), as its subsidiary EnerDel pursues the hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) market for its lithium batteries. EnerDel is working closely with Japan-based ITOCHU Corporation and developing what may be the first HEV lithium-ion batteries to be mass manufactured in the U.S.

Mr. Cogan founded Foamex International in 1984 and built its foam operations in the automotive industry to a 65 percent penetration in North America for a period of ten years. Today Foamex continues to be the dominant supplier of urethane foam to the industry.

In 1986, Mr. Cogan acquired control of Sheller Globe, at that time, the world's largest manufacturer of steering wheels and related automotive components with revenue of $800 million. He sold control for 15 times his holding company's original investment to United Technology in less than two years in partnership with Shearson-Lehman American Express.

In 1992, with the support of Harvard Private Equity, Apollo Management and JP Morgan Private Capital, he founded and was the pioneer in the Consolidation of the auto retail business, United Auto Group (UAG). With an original total investment of $87.5 million, the company went public through JP Morgan in 1996, and ultimately sold in 1999 to Roger Penske. The current market value of UAG is $2 billion.

Charles Gassenheimer stated: "I met Marshall Cogan while running The private investment group at Satellite Asset Management and was impressed by his vast network of resources and passion for building businesses. His relationships with the financial community and global corporations will help our companies gain access to markets faster, as well as build Ener1 Group's asset management division."

Mr. Cogan commented: "I will be working with an able CEO in Charles, whom I look forward to sharing ideas that bring value to the shareholders of Ener1 Group and the public shareholders of its portfolio companies. I have a great deal of respect for Charles' clarity of thinking and track record for success, which led to my decision to join Ener1 Group."

Mr. Cogan is a former partner of Cogan, Berlind, Weill & Levitt, rising to the position of Partner in Charge of Investment Banking and Institutional Research. He guided the firm in an acquisition of Hayden Stone, Inc, where he was named Vice Chairman. This was the predecessor firm to Shearson-Lehman American Express. From 1974 - 1999, Mr. Cogan was Chairman and CEO of a private investment company called Trace International Holdings, Inc. He has served as either Chairman and/or CEO of numerous public and private companies including Knoll International, General Felt Industries, Foamex, United Auto Group and most recently, Greystone Logistics.

He serves as a Director of the Friends of Israel Museum, Trustee of the Boston Latin School, the oldest public school in America, and Trustee of New York University Hospital. He also served on the Board of the Museum of Modern Art for 20 years and was Chairman of Architecture and Design for 10 years.

He graduated from Harvard College and also received his MBA from Harvard University School of Business.

About Ener1 Group
Ener1 Group is a global investment firm with offices in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, New York and Moscow. The firm's assets include ownership in 11 portfolio companies in a variety of technology and commercially-driven industries, including Ener1 Inc (OTC: ENEI) and Splinex Technology Inc (OTC: SPLX). For more information about Ener1 Group, Inc, visit http://www.ener1group.com, or call 954-202-4442. Mr. Cogan will be based out of Ener1 Group's New York office and may be reached at 212-920-3500.

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