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Business briefs

27 May 2005

Including news from JDS Uniphase, DALSA, Kodak, InPhase Technologies and more.

General company news:

•  Cambridge Display Technology (CDT) of the UK and Sumitomo Chemical of Japan are forming a joint venture to develop advanced polymer OLED (P-OLED) materials for displays and lighting applications. The new company will be based in Tokyo and owned equally by the two parent companies.

•  Sumitomo Chemical is investing $186 million to construct two methyl methacrylate (MMA) monomer and polymer lines in Singapore, according to On Target Media. When operational in Q1 2008, Sumitomo's annual capacity of MMA polymer in Singapore will be 100,000 tons. Around 30% of this output will be used for LCDs and projection televisions, said Nagao Michio, the company's deputy managing director.

•  JDS Uniphase is acquiring optical test and measurement (T&M) specialist Acterna for $450 million in cash and $310 million in common stock. The deal is expected to close by the end of September. Acterna, which employs around 1770 people worldwide, will become JDSU's Communications T&M product group.

•  Eastman Kodak of the US has licensed its OLED technology to Fuji Electric Holdings of Japan. Fuji plans to use the licence to produce flat-panel passive-matrix displays.

•  InPhase Technologies of the US has closed its third round of funding on $32.1 million. The company says the new funds will allow it to complete the commercialisation of the world's first holographic data storage drive and media. The initial product will hold 300 GB of data with a transfer rate of 20 MB per second.

•  DisplaySearch, the US flat panel display market analyst, has reported that worldwide shipments of plasma display panel (PDP) televisions increased 87% year-on-year to 904,000. Shipments in China rose 454% year-on-year to a record 136,000 units. While China enjoyed the fastest growth, Europe retained the largest market share at 33% closely followed by North America at 32%. The most popular PDP television size is 42-43 inches.

•  DALSA of Canada has received a C$3.8 million renewal contract to supply an OEM in the medical market with image sensor chips. One third of the chips will be delivered in 2005, one half in 2006 and the remainder in 2007.

•  Plastic Logic, a developer of plastic electronics technology, has opened its multi-million dollar prototyping facility in Cambridge, UK. Located alongside the firm's existing offices and R&D facilities, the line will initially target the production of active matrix backplanes for flexible e-reader displays.

Distribution agreements:

•  Alfalight of the US has named Sanetronic Company Limited as its distributor in China. Sanetronic will provide sales and support for Alfalight's complete line of high-power diode pump lasers and laser modules throughout China.

•  Frankfurt Laser Company, Germany, has been appointed the exclusive European distributor of Snake Creek Lasers' MicroGreen and MiniGreen 532nm DPSS sources.

CeNing Optics Co LtdMad City Labs, Inc.Iridian Spectral TechnologiesABTechBerkeley Nucleonics CorporationSPECTROGON ABOptikos Corporation
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