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Start-up spotlight: Laser Micromachining

16 Apr 2008

Expertise in laser manufacturing and fabrication techniques is on offer to a range of industry sectors from this UK start-up.

What is the company's core technology, and what makes it unique/commercial?
"Laser Micromachining Limited (LML) provides high-quality laser manufacturing services to industry, especially companies in the micro and nanotechnology sectors," explained LML general manager Nadeem Rizvi to optics.org.

"We have established a clear market lead in enabling companies to access the latest laser fabrication techniques in a simple and quick manner - the ethos is that one should not have to sacrifice speed of service when requiring access to the latest manufacturing technologies. LML also undertakes very small contracts so that companies can assess an idea quickly and cheaply before embarking on further work."

What products does the company sell?
"LML's main product is our expertise and we sell this expertise to industry to enable companies to gain an economic advantage using state-of-the-art laser manufacturing techniques," said Rizvi. "The company usually works in a pure 'service provision' mode, using in-house laser tools to prototype and manufacture parts under contract, but has also taken processes and equipment developed by us to the manufacturing plants of client companies."

What application areas does the company target?
"Four of LML's biggest client sectors are medical, biotech, photonics and displays, although we work with about a dozen different major applications areas. This means that we have to understand the varying needs of different markets and have to provide the services they require."

What were the origins of the company?
The business evolved out of a commercial laser micromachining operation that was begun within Bangor University in 2003. It was realized that the required growth of this venture could only be achieved outside of the confines of a university, and hence LML was formed to be an independent, fully-commercial company in 2004. "The company is now based in its own premises in St. Asaph, North Wales, and has grown strongly in the past two years," commented Rizvi. "The operations of the company were also recently recognized by the Institute of Mechanical Engineers, which awarded it the MNT Quality Mark, an internationally-recognised accreditation which is part of the IMEchE's annual MX awards."

What are your future plans?
"The main aim of the company is to become even more firmly established as the leading provider of laser micromachining expertise in the UK and Europe. In time we see extension into the Asian markets (and possibly North America as well) although we realize that those markets there are distinctly different."

Quick facts:
Funding: LML does not have any external VC funding. It receives some government grant funding to operate the UK's national centre of excellence in laser micromachining (UK-LMC) but the business is mainly funded from the company's operations.

Laser Micromachining Limited
OpTIC Technium
St. Asaph Business Park
LL17 0JD

Telephone: +44 (0)1745 535165
Fax: +44 (0)1745 535101
Email: n.rizvi@lasermicromachining.com
Web: www.lasermicromachining.com

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