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CVI to acquire Melles Griot

11 May 2007

Optics and photonics big-hitters CVI and Melles Griot will be merging once the terms of the acquisition are signed off. optics.org speaks to CVI's CEO Stuart Schoenmann to find out more.

CVI has announced plans to acquire Melles Griot for an undisclosed sum. In a move that brings together two of the biggest names in the photonics marketplace, the acquisition will more than double CVI's workforce to over 1000 once the deal closes in a few weeks time.

"Our goal is to help our customers beat their competition to market," Stuart Schoenmann, CEO of CVI told optics.org. "This acquisition enables us to bring design, manufacturing, assembly, and testing of photonic products and optical sub-systems under one roof. Vertical integration of these capabilities improves quality, performance, and service to the customer."

This latest acquisition also helps CVI to achieve its target of having worldwide manufacturing capabilities. In recent years, the company has established facilities in Asia and acquired European firms Technical Optics and Quality Laser Optics as well as US-based Optical Components.

"These actions have enabled us to expand our geographic footprint to provide local direct sales support and manufacturing to our customers," said Schoenmann. "The Melles Griot acquisition is a significant component of CVI's plan to expand our capabilities and manufacturing capacity to meet worldwide demand."

The combined company will be called CVI Melles Griot. CVI also plans to hold on to all aspects of Melles Griot's diverse range of products - including its laser business, which is a departure from CVI's traditional offerings.

"We were attracted to Melles Griot's current and planned product portfolio," said Schoenmann. "We expect to continue to grow and invest in their unique laser product business."

The only overlap comes when you look at the catalogue of optical products both firms currently supply. "These will be reconciled into one catalogue," explained Schoenmann. "Customers will be contacted if we intend to change part numbers of specifications. It will take some time to integrate business systems, websites and catalogues. Customers should continue of work with their established sales channel."

And in terms of employees, manufacturing facilities and future growth, Schoenmann hinted that more announcements may be on the cards. "We are impressed with the technical skills and depth of the Melles Griot employees," he said. "We want to hold onto the talent and continue to expand through organic growth and acquisition in order to meet the demands and needs of our customers."

Author Jacqueline Hewett is editor of Optics & Laser Europe magazine.

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