Laser Industry Report

Rofin-Sinar acquires Swedish fiberoptics firm; IDS expands portfolio with patent on medical imaging system; Report optimistic on future of long-wavelength lasers; MORE...

Rofin-Sinar acquires Swedish fiberoptics firm

Rofin-Sinar Laser (Hamburg, Germany), an affiliate company of Rofin-Sinar Technologies (Plymouth, MI), has acquired 90% of the common stock of Optoskand (Gothenburg, Sweden) in a cash transaction. The remaining 10% of the common stock of Optoskand is still held by Permanova Holding. Further terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. Optoskand manufactures high-power, fiberoptic beam-delivery systems and components. The company was founded in 2002 following a spin off from Permanova Lasersystem. With 25 employees and annual sales of approximately $3 million, the company develops fiberoptic systems for solid-state lasers based on its proprietary design.

IDS expands portfolio with patent on medical imaging system

Imaging Diagnostic Systems (Fort Lauderdale, FL) has announced that the U.S. patent application filed October 2001, "Laser imaging apparatus using biomedical markers that bind to cancer cells," was granted to Robert Wake, vice president of engineering, by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and assigned to Imaging Diagnostic Systems as U.S. Patent 6,693,287. This patent protects the proprietary method of collecting data while using "biomedical" markers that bind to cancer cells during a CT laser scan to provide a positive identification of the cancer area, to selectively activate the photodynamic therapy drug to destroy the cancer.

Report optimistic on future of long-wavelength lasers

The recovery in the telecom sector and growing use of 10-Gbit optical links for enterprise and storage applications will drive steady growth in the long-wavelength laser and transceiver market, according to a new study from Strategies Unlimited (Mountain View, CA). However,

2004 will be critical for the suppliers, with more than 40 companies clamoring for orders spread among a dizzying number of new and existing segments and surprisingly little consolidation.

Other findings in the report, Long- Wavelength High-Data-Rate Lasers 2004, include:

  • After falling by 80% from its peak to $500 million in 2003, the market is expected to grow at a compound annual rate of 24% by 2008. The recovery will be boosted by the growing use of optical links in LANs and SANs that will create new demand for long-wavelength transceivers in campus and, to a lesser extent, metro networks.
  • Opportunities include emerging form factors and new approaches to carry 10-Gbit/s traffic over legacy multimode fiber. The latter developments will drive the use of long wavelength transceivers where short wavelength transceivers have been traditionally used.
  • Two suppliers associated with enterprise network products, Agilent and Finisar, led sales in 2003. Datacom transceiver suppliers are pushing toward higherend products, while some traditionally high-end telecom suppliers seek to capture sales to enterprise equipment makers.
  • Dozens of companies are competing over a changing array of segments. Because every supplier has cut back severely, no company can feel secure about its own ability to recover, or for startups, just to make it to first base.

"The saying that past performance is no indication of future behavior is especially apt in this market," said Tom Hausken, director of communication-component research at Strategies Unlimited. "It is impossible to predict who will emerge as the new market leaders, but a change in lineup is certain, and we are seeing some of that already."

The report reviews the applications, markets, technology, and suppliers of these lasers and transceiver products and presents forecasts by application and type, including unit sales, price projections, and estimates of revenues and market shares of key suppliers.

Also in the news . . .

Synrad (Mukilteo, WA) signed a new distribution partnership with Optoprim (Vanves, France). Optoprim will head Synrad's CO2 laser distribution in France. . . . StockerYale (Salem, NH) has completed the placement of $6.6 million consisting of $4 million in convertible notes with Laurus Master Fund, and $2.6 million of common stock with existing and new institutional investors. . . . Applied Optoelectronics (Sugar Land, TX) raised $12 million in a third round of private financing, boosting the total capital raised by the company to $29.2 million since its inception in early 1997. . . . James Hsia, former senior vice president and chief research officer at Candela (Wayland, MA), has returned to Candela as chief technology officer after leaving the company for a time to found Lasersharp.

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