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Electro Scientific snaps up GSI unit

10 Apr 2013

Semiconductor systems business had been earmarked for sale by GSI back in 2011.

Electro Scientific Industries (ESI), the Portland, Oregon, company that sells laser production systems used in microelectronics manufacturing, is set to acquire the semiconductor systems business unit belonging to GSI Group.

GSI has been trying to sell the business as one of the final elements of its wider “12 by 12” strategic restructuring effort that began in late 2011.

Accounting errors relating to sales from GSI's semiconductor systems unit had been one of the problems that resulted in the Massachusetts-headquartered company entering into Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings and a major restructuring back in 2010.

Meanwhile, ESI has been going through its own change of strategic focus and consolidation of production sites and workforce. It expects the acquired business unit to bring it somewhere between $20 million and $30 million in annual revenues.

Strategic fit
“The GSI Semiconductor Systems business is an excellent operational fit with ESI,” said Nick Konidaris, the CEO of ESI. “The business brings a strong technical team, broadens our revenue base with our semi customers, and strengthens our semiconductor division.”

Konidaris added that the acquired business portfolio was complementary to ESI’s existing revenue base, with almost zero product overlap, saying: “This acquisition broadens our product portfolio and allows ESI to provide a more complete set of laser-based manufacturing solutions to our semiconductor customers.”

“We are pleased to complete this transaction, which ultimately enables GSI to focus our growth investments on our OEM component businesses,” added the GSI Group CEO, John Roush.

“We believe this outcome is the best result for customers, employees and shareholders of both companies. The GSI team will work closely with our counterparts at ESI to ensure a smooth transition of ownership of the Semiconductor Systems business.”

Following the announcement, ESI's stock price was up by around 5% in early trading on the Nasdaq stock exchange, while GSI's had also risen, by around 3%.

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