II-VI Announces Expansion of Laser Optics and Components Product Lines

II-VI Inc. announced this week it will expand its laser optics and components product lines and enter the fiber laser market by acquiring 74.9 percent of HighYAG Lasertechnologie GmbH for an undisclosed amount of cash.

HighYAG was founded in 1995 and is based near Berlin, Germany. It manufactures automated equipment to deliver high-power 1-ìm laser light for cutting, drilling and welding in automotive, semiconductor and other materials-processing applications. It also produces tools for laser materials processing, including modular laser processing heads for fiber lasers, YAG lasers and other 1-ìm laser systems and makes beam-delivery systems, including fiber optic cables. The company's revenue for 2006 was approximately $6.2 million.

Saxonburg-based II-VI produces crystalline compounds for infrared laser optics, gamma radiation detectors, high-power electronic and microwave applications and thermoelectric coolers. The company's infrared optics business, II-VI Infrared, manufactures optical and optoelectronic components for industrial laser and thermal imaging systems. Its near-infrared (near-IR) optics business, VLOC, makes near-IR and visible light products for industrial, scientific, military and medical instruments. The company said the HighYAG products will complement those of both of its optics businesses.

"The acquisition of a majority interest in HighYAG is an important part in the growth strategy of II-VI. This acquisition will enable us to supply components into the fiber laser market, and is a further extension of the competencies we have in providing a wide range of optical components for industrial laser applications," said Francis J. Kramer, CEO and president of II-VI. Specific terms of the deal were not disclosed.

"We are excited to join II-VI to leverage our competencies in order to address new applications for the one-micron laser market that are being enabled by recent advancements in fiber lasers, disk lasers and semiconductor laser sources, while expanding our North American sales and customer service presence. The acquisition will not only provide HighYAG better access to new markets and an increased level of financial strength, but also will emphasize our strategy of being an independent laser component supplier," said Bjoern Wedel, CEO of HighYAG. Wedel will retain ownership of the remaining 25.1 percent of HighYAG and will stay on managing director after the transaction closes.

The deal is expected to close in II-VI's third quarter of fiscal year 2008.

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