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IPG Photonics files for public share offering

07 Sep 2006

The fiber laser specialist is looking to float on the US stock market to raise cash that will be used partly to fund its diode manufacturing expansion.

Oxford, MA, fiber laser and amplifier specialist IPG Photonics has filed a registration statement with the US government's Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for a proposed initial public offering (IPO) of its common stock.

Although the company is yet to reveal details of the anticipated timing or value of the IPO, its S-1 registration statement with the SEC does contain plenty of information.

IPG uses MBE to manufacture high-power, multi-mode diodes based on the AlInGaAs material system at its 123,000 ft2 (11,400 m2) wafer fab in Oxford.

The diodes are the key components that feature in the company's fiber laser systems, which are used in materials processing applications and provide a much smaller, more convenient alternative to traditional carbon dioxide and solid-state lasers.

Part of the expected proceeds from the IPO will be used to fund an 82,000 ft2 (7600 m2)expansion of the diode laser facility.

Currently with 900 employees and 300 customers, IPG posted sales of $64.9 million and a net profit of $6.1 million in the first six months of 2006.

Company CEO and founder Valentin Gapontsev is the majority shareholder in IPG, owning 62.6% of shares prior to the IPO. His son Denis acts as VP of research and development at the company.

Following a bout of litigation resolved in August 2003, rival diode laser manufacturer JDSU now owns 5.5% of IPG stock.

On its balance sheet, IPG currently lists total assets worth $132 million, with cash and cash equivalents totaling $11.3 million and long-term debt of $22.7 million.

It is anticipated that certain existing stockholders of IPG Photonics will be permitted to sell a portion of their holdings in the proposed offering, IPG said.

Merrill Lynch & Co. and Lehman Brothers are acting as joint book-running managers of the offering. Needham & Co, LLC, Jefferies & Co and Thomas Weisel Partners LLC are acting as co-managers.

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