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Alcatel Optronics Buys Kymata

Optical-components designer Alcatel Optronics , a division of optical-networking giant Alcatel , said it would buy Kymata Ltd., a player in mastering planar technology for high-end passive optical components, representing the majority of the fast growing Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing (DWDM) market.

Terms of the agreement call for 9 million Alcatel Class O shares and 2.2 million Alcatel Class A shares to be exchanged for all outstanding shares of Livingston, Scotland-based Kymata. Based on the closing price in Paris on July 27, 2001, the transaction has an implied value of EUR134 million ($117.6 million), Alcatel Optronics officials said.

The transaction "strengthens Alcatel Optronics' position as a forerunner in the integration of active and passive optical network devices," officials said in a statement.

Kymata produces Arrayed Waveguide Gratings (AWGs) multiplexer/demultiplexers, the first commercially available devices using planar processes, officials said. AWG is considered to be one of the leading technologies for the metropolitan optical network market, one of the fastest growing markets in the telecommunication industry and a strategic target for Alcatel Optronics.

This acquisition also confirms Alcatel Optronics' strategy to be a major player in the integration of active and passive optical components by strengthening its planar waveguide expertise as well as its passive component product lines, the company also said.

"Kymata is a perfect match with Alcatel Optronics and will allow us to gain at least two years in time-to-market for planar products, said Jean-Christophe Giroux, chief executive officer (CEO) of Alcatel Optronics, in a statement. "This acquisition is a crucial step in the implementation of our strategy of active/passive integration, which we consider to be key to the future. Their high-end passive components complement our own high-end active component portfolio."

The transaction is subject to various closing conditions and is expected to close by end of August, officials added.