22 Feb 2008
The acquisition brings specialist fibre optic laser capability into Qioptiq's growing laser portfolio.
Point Source, based near Southampton, UK, specializes in fibre optic laser delivery systems and lasers for biotechnology and semiconductor applications, offering single-mode laser-to-fibre couplers and fibre-coupled lasers in the ultraviolet, visible and near-infrared wavelengths. "Point Source is a well regarded and profitable organisation which we see having considerable development potential," Qioptiq's chief executive officer Benoit Bazire told optics.org.
Qioptiq already has optical interests ranging from high-precision visible and infrared assemblies to advanced optical coatings. The Point Source deal follows Qioptiq's acquisition of Linos in 2006, and further strengthens the group's growing presence in lasers and photonics. "Point Source was attractive to us as it gives us more of a laser capability," said Bazire. "We currently have a small operation within our Linos business and we wanted to build this up, as it is an important part of the whole photonics arena."
For their part, Point Source expect to gain access to markets and customers not previously available to them. "This is a very exciting next step in our journey," said David Pointer, managing director of Point Source. "Joining Qioptiq opens up a range of international markets and provides a significantly broader range of products for our customers."
Point Source will become part of Qioptiq's Optical Systems Division headed by Volker Brockmeyer. The division focuses on optical systems for IT and communications, healthcare, life sciences and industrial manufacture, which are all targeted by Qioptiq as strong growth markets. "Point Source's client base is strong, and the company has well-established relationships with market leaders in flow cytometry and semiconductor lithography," said Bazire.
Fibre optic laser delivery is claimed to allow a range of advantages, including the ability to reduce instrument footprint by having lasers external to the main application for modular design. Optical alignment of the instrument can be factory-set and fixed, so during replacement only the laser to fibre coupling has to be realigned, and not the whole optical beam train.