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Industry News

Around the Circuit

February 1, 2000
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Around the Circuit

INDUSTRY NEWS
Radio-based solution and wireless telephony and data communication product manufacturer Allgon AB has acquired Wireless Solutions Sweden AB . Under the terms of the acquisition, the companies are expected to cooperatively develop products and services for third-generation systems for wireless communications, specifically EDGE and wideband CDMA. The purchase price of SEK 75 M will be allocated in 383,000 class B shares and a cash payment of SEK 17.5 M.

Micrel Inc. , San Jose, CA, has acquired privately held Altos Semiconductor Inc. , a developer of temperature sensing and thermal management products. Under the terms of the agreement, the purchase price of $1.8 M was paid in cash for the outstanding shares of Altos’ capital stock. In addition, Micrel intends to utilize a one-time charge against after-tax earnings for the expense of research and development associated with the acquisition. The acquisition is expected to further strengthen Micrel’s position as a mixed-signal and analog IC supplier.

STMicroelectronics Inc. , Lexington, MA, has acquired the outstanding share capital of Arithmos Inc. , Santa Clara, CA. Under the terms of the acquisition, STMicroelectronics also will obtain the product portfolio, intellectual property, know-how and technology developed by Arithmos. In related news, STMicroelectronics and Ericsson Mobile Communications have entered into an agreement to develop a range of devices based on Ericsson Bluetooth™ core architecture. Both companies also are working to approach the open market with optimized Bluetooth solutions.

Melles Griot has acquired the business of Laser Power Microlaser Group , a leading technology developer and manufacturer of blue, green and near-infrared diode-pumped, solid-state laser systems. Under the terms of the acquisition, Laser Power will transfer the manufacture and development of its products to Melles Griot Laser Group’s new 100,000-square-foot laser manufacturing facility in Carlsbad, CA.

SEMX Corp. , Armonk, NY, has signed a letter of intent for its subsidiary, Polese Co. , San Diego, CA, to acquire the assets and assume selected liabilities of Advanced Packaging Concepts Inc. , Vista, CA. The transaction is expected to be completed this year pending the execution of a definitive purchase agreement and the approval of SEMX’s board of directors and PNC Bank. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Andrew Corp. , Orland Park, IL, has acquired Conifer Corp. , Burlington, IA, a privately owned company that designs and manufactures multichannel, multipoint distribution service subscriber products, wireless local area network equipment and direct broadcast satellite accessories. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

National Technical Systems Inc. (NTS) , Calabasas, CA, has acquired the operations and laboratory of Dallas, TX-based RheinTexas from privately held RheinTech Laboratories , Hernoon, VA. The RheinTexas operation, which performs electromagnetic compatibility testing for telecommunications manufacturers, houses an outdoor antenna test site and a separate 24,000-square-foot laboratory. The acquisition is expected to expand NTS’ testing resources to service the increasing level of business from the telecommunications industry. In related news, Washington Laboratories Ltd. , Gaithersburg, MD, has entered into a memorandum of understanding with NTS to provide a one-stop resource for electrical and electronics manufacturers in the mid-Atlantic region. Under the terms of the strategic partnership, Washington Labs will offer full-service Bellcore GR-1089 and GR-63 testing and NRTL endorsement for telecommunications clients; NTS will provide full seismic, temperature, vibration and environmental capabilities.

Sophisticated electronic component and system designer and manufacturer Signal Technology Corp. , Danvers, MA, has acquired the assets of privately held, high frequency millimeter-wave and microwave transceiver supplier Advanced Frequency Products (AFP) . Under the terms of the acquisition, Signal intends to utilize its manufacturing capabilities and financial resources to facilitate the continued growth of AFP, which has a current order backlog of approximately $6.5 M. Financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed. In related news, Signal Technology has formed Signal Wireless Group . The new wireless business formation is an extension of the company’s strategy to target the growing commercial, broadband wireless communications market. Signal Wireless Group will comprise the wireless activities resident in the company’s Beverly, MA facility, and California and Arizona operations, which are the result of a focused research and development program.

Textron Inc. , Providence, RI, has acquired RIFOCS Corp. , a privately owned manufacturer of fiber-optic test and measurement instruments and components for industrial, commercial and aerospace defense technologies. Under the terms of the acquisition, RIFOCS will become part of Greenlee Textron , a supplier of test, measurement and installation equipment for the data/signal/voice market. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

First Source Inc ., San Jose, CA, has acquired the assets of Microwave Marketing Distribution (MMD) , Westford, MA, enabling First Source to provide national distribution of its complete line of RF and microwave components. Under the terms of the acquisition, an additional 16 principals will be added to MMD’s offerings. Financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed.

Precision rotating component manufacturer Diamond Antenna and Microwave Corp. , Lowell, MA, has acquired the waveguide switch product line of Micronetics Wireless Inc. , Hudson, NH. The acquisition is expected to extend Diamond’s current product offerings of microwave rotary joints and Roll-Rings (slip rings) for terrestrial and space applications.

Cober Electronics Inc. , Norwalk, CT, and Muegge Electronic GmbH of Germany have formed Cober Muegge LLC , a new company that will serve the industrial microwave heating markets. The company is located at 151 Woodward Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06854 (203) 852-0343, fax (203) 852-0214.

Electronic component and custom electronic assembly manufacturer CTS Corp. , Elkhart, IN, has formed an RF integrated modules business unit that will become part of the company’s Wireless Group and offer complete RF sections of a cellular phone as an integrated module.

Microwave receiver and RF instrument manufacturer Communication Solutions Inc. (COM-SOL) has moved to a larger facility located at 10522 Philadelphia Rd., White Marsh, MD 21162 (410) 344-9000, fax (410) 344-1790 or e-mail: sales@comsol-inc.com. The facility is configured and equipped to enhance time to market for new products and improve delivery response for standard products. The company expects a 25 percent increase in business volume this year.

Microwave component and subsystem manufacturer General Microwave Corp. , a Herley company, has moved to a 43,000-square-foot facility located at 425 Smith Street, Farmingdale, NY 11735 (631) 630-2000, fax (631) 630-2066. The facility also houses a newly constructed 8000-square-foot clean room for micro-assembly and testing.

Southwest Microwave Inc. has moved to a new 50,000-square-foot facility located at 9055 South McKemy Street, Tempe, AZ 85284 (480) 783-0201, fax (480) 783-0360 or e-mail: connectors@southwestmicrowave.com. The facility has more than doubled the company’s office and manufacturing space for continued business growth.

L-3 Communications’ Global Network Solutions (GNS) business unit has opened a new sales and marketing headquarters located at 11800 Sunrise Valley Drive, Ste. 1550, Reston, VA 20191 (703) 390-2350, fax (703) 620-4011. GNS has also opened regional offices in Dallas, TX and Atlanta, GA.

Mitel Semiconductor , a division of Mitel Corp. , and Philsar Electronics Inc. have entered into an agreement to develop a complete low power, low cost Bluetooth IC solution. Under the terms of the agreement, the companies will utilize Mitel’s Bluetooth solution, which comprises radio ICs and software and Philsar’s unique Radio Signal Processor™ technology. A prototype of the example platform is expected by next month.

Telecommunications RF site compliance solution provider SiteSafe LLC , Arlington, VA, has entered into a definitive agreement with Triton PCS Inc. to perform RF emission evaluations for approximately 600 Triton antenna sites. Under the terms of the agreement, SiteSafe will ensure that each site is compliant with Federal Communications Commission regulations and provide a BTA-to-BTA review and certification of RF compliance.

Space Electronics Inc. , a subsidiary of Maxwell Technologies Inc. , has expanded its strategic partnership with Actel Corp. Under the terms of the agreement, Space Electronics will become the sole authorized selling agent for Actel’s RAD-PAK® field-programmable gate arrays and will be responsible for maintaining inventory and order processing and fulfillment as well as custom design support. In related news, Space Electronics has been awarded transitional certification to Qualified Manufacturers Listing (QML) status. The company also intends to pursue ISO certification later this year.

Prominent Communications Inc. , San Diego, CA, and Macronix International Company Ltd. of Taiwan have entered into a joint agreement to develop digital spread spectrum wireless communications technologies. A proposed 900 MHz chipset is expected to leverage both companies’ strengths by utilizing Prominent’s RF design expertise and Macronix’s advanced digital baseband technologies to cooperatively produce a highly reliable, cost-effective integrated solution.

Trace Laboratories - Central and TUV Rheinland of North America Inc. have entered into a cooperative relationship to provide a range of testing and certification services to manufacturers, including CB Scheme, GS, NRTL and CE Mark. The services will test manufacturers’ products according to low voltage and medical devices and machinery directives as well as other specialized requirements.

RF Industries Ltd. , San Diego, CA, has signed a national distribution agreement with REPTRON Electronics Inc. , Tampa, FL, to distribute its full line of coaxial and cable products.

Vishay Intertechnology Inc. and Nichicon Corp. have entered into a technical cooperation agreement to develop tantalum capacitor technology, materials and production equipment to meet market requirements for advanced technology capacitors. The companies anticipate the introduction of an organic polymer tantalum capacitor with extremely low equivalent series resistance as a result of the joint collaboration.

Ansoft Corp. and Thomson-CSF have completed a software licensing agreement whereby Ansoft will be the approved worldwide supplier of electromagnetic (EM) analysis software for Thomson-CSF. Under the terms of the agreement, Ansoft HFSS has been selected as the EM three-dimensional solution for Thomson’s Atelier de Developpement Materiel.

SpectraPoint Wireless LLC and REMEC Inc. have signed a multiyear strategic supply agreement whereby REMEC intends to produce broadband wireless RF transport equipment for SpectraPoint for use in local multipoint distribution systems.

Cisco Systems Inc. has selected Watkins-Johnson Co.’s (WJ) Wireless Products Group as a technology partner for the RF Outdoor Unit (ODU) in support of the RF Broadband Fixed Wireless alliance. WJ’s model SX1115 ODU is compatible with Cisco’s model WT2700 wireless technology suite for operation in the 5.8 GHz Unlicensed National Information Infrastructure band.

Lambda Electronics Inc. , Melville, NY, has selected RS Electronics , Livonia, MI, to distribute its industrial and telecommunications products, including AC-to-DC power supplies, DC-to-DC converters and related accessories. Other Lambda distributors include Pioneer, Gerber, Digi-Key, Jaco, Newark, MLC, Avnet, Simcona, Allied and REPTRON Electronics .

IVT Corp. , Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, has announced the commercial availability of a Bluetooth protocol stack in specification and description language (SDL) and C source code. In addition, IVT and CS VERILOG , Dallas, TX, have entered into a value-added reseller agreement whereby CS VERILOG will provide the SDL supporting development tools for the Bluetooth protocol stack.

Custom epiwafer supplier International Quantum Epitaxy (IQE) has placed firm orders for six (with options for two additional) next-generation multiwafer molecular beam epitaxy production systems that are capable of producing multiple six-inch wafers per process run. The company is currently operating the model VG150, the world’s largest multiwafer six-inch system.

Resistor manufacturer International Resistive Company Inc. (IRC) , Corpus Christi, TX, has expanded its series of integrated passive networks to include chip-scale packaging. The networks can be configured for a range of line termination and electromagnetic and RF interference filtering functions that are designed specifically to meet the demands of wireless voice and data communications applications where high density and high frequency performance are critical.

ImaginOn Inc. ’s CEO David Schwartz has been awarded a US patent (Patent No. 5,969,559) for PowerClock, a method and apparatus that uses the power grid for clock distribution in semiconductor ICs and may reduce the power consumption of semiconductor ICs by as much as 40 percent. Schwartz has assigned all rights of the patent to ImaginOn.

RFIC solution designer and manufacturer ANADIGICS Inc. has delivered more than one million GaAs quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM) tuner ICs for implementation in Motorola’s cable modem products. The QAM chipset comprises the model ACU50751 upconverter and the model ACD0900 downconverter, and performs the functions of a dual-conversion cable television tuner.

Murata Electronics North America , Smyrna, GA, has joined the HomeRF Working Group, an organization that has created Shared Wireless Access Protocol, a common specification meant to enable wireless broadband Internet data and toll-quality service within the home.

Microwave Communications Laboratories Inc. (MCLI) , St. Petersburg, FL, has received ISO 9001 certification. The company manufactures microwave/RF components, including power dividers, couplers, hybrids and mechanical switches.

Printed circuit board (PCB) fabrication source PCB Engineering Inc. , Milpitas, CA, has purchased and installed a Valor Genesis 2000 CAD system, one of the most powerful front-end design tools available to the PCB design community. The installation is expected to enhance the company’s commitment to servicing the needs of the time-critical market.

RF Monolithics Inc. , Dallas, TX, has been awarded the International Engineering Consortium’s InfoVision99 Award for its TR1000 916.5 MHz hybrid transceiver. The award recognizes technologies, applications, products and services that are unique and beneficial to the industry.

Palomar Technologies Inc. , Vista, CA, celebrated a record-breaking month of sales in October 1999 with multiple system orders from nearly a dozen customers, predominantly representing the wireless, microwave and telecommunications markets.

Assembly and handling equipment designer and manufacturer Semiconductor Equipment Corp. (SEC) , Moorpark, CA, is celebrating its 25th anniversary. Founded in 1974, the company introduced the first hot gas rework system to remove reject-bonded die.

FINANCIAL NEWS
REMEC Inc. reports sales of $48.4 M for the third quarter, ended October 29, 1999, compared to $41.7 M for the same period in 1998. Net loss was $1.1 M (4¢/diluted share), compared to a net income of $401 K (2¢/diluted share) for the same quarter in 1998.

Micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) component designer and manufacturer Cronos Integrated Microsystems Inc. , Research Triangle Park, NC, has raised $8 M in its first round of venture capital financing. The funds will be utilized to help further the company’s growth in the MEMS component markets and, specifically, telecommunications and instrumentation. Financing was provided by SpaceVest II LP, Intel Corp. and Knickerbocker LLC.

Proprietary RFIC provider RF Micro Devices Inc. , Greensboro, NC, has been added to the Nasdaq-100 Index,® which represents the largest nonfinancial domestic and international issues listed on The Nasdaq Stock Market.® Eligible companies must have a minimum average daily trading volume of 100,000 shares and be listed on Nasdaq or another major exchange for at least two years.

Optoelectronic and fiber-optic chip manufacturer Discovery Semiconductors Inc. has been financed by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority. The loan, which is valued at $360 K, will be used for working capital and purchase of equipment to support the remarkable growth and job expansion experienced by the company since its founding in 1991.

Next-generation broadband wireless access equipment supplier Ensemble Communications Inc. , San Diego, CA, has completed a $25 M round of venture financing with new investments from Digital Microwave Corp., Intel Corp. and Korea Telecom Bank Venture Capital. Existing investors include Enterprise Partners, Institutional Venture Partners, Trinity Ventures, Crescendo Ventures and ADC Telecommunications. The funds will be used to increase staff, facilities and marketing efforts for the commercial launch of the company’s Fiberless™ system.

TrueTime Inc. , Santa Rosa, CA, has announced the initial public offering of 3,000,000 shares of its common stock at $5 per share. Underwriters have a 30-day option to purchase up to 450,000 additional shares to cover any over-allotments. For a copy of the final prospectus, contact C.E. Unterberg, Towbin (800) 538-7003.

DB Products Inc.’s Microwave Switch Division has reported a record 36 percent sales growth for 1999. The company anticipates continual strong sales of its RF and microwave electromechanical switching products.

CONTRACTS
REMEC Inc. has entered into an agreement with Northrop Grumman Corp. to supply microwave multifunction modules and products for 10,397 Longbow missiles. The five-year contract is valued at $58.3 M and deliveries are expected to begin this year.

Signal Technology Corp.’s Keltec Operation , Fort Walton Beach, FL, has been awarded new and follow-on production contracts that solidify the company’s presence on platforms such as the F-16, F-18, F-14, RAM and Aegis systems as well as Navy satellite communications. The contracts are valued in excess of $6.6 M.

Microwave & Video Systems Inc. (MVS) , Danbury, CT, a division of Micronetics Wireless Inc. , has received the first phase of a government contract for microwave integrated assemblies, switch/filter banks and PIN diode switches. Contract enhancements and options could add more than $2 M to the basic contract, which is scheduled over three years. A portion of the manufacturing assembly will be performed at Micronetic’s Hudson, NH facility.

Diamond Antenna and Microwave Corp. , Lowell, MA, has been awarded its third contract by the Federal Aviation Administration for a 22-channel Roll-Ring assembly for use on the ASDE-3 platform. Financial details were not disclosed.

PERSONNEL
American Microsystems Inc. (AMI) has appointed H. Gene Patterson CEO and president. Most recently, Patterson was CEO and president at Symbios Logic.

Frank J. Polese has been promoted to president of the Materials Group at SEMX Corp. Polese is currently the president and CEO of Polese Co., a subsidiary of SEMX.

KMW Inc. has appointed Yeung J. Kim VP, sales and marketing. Kim has more than 17 years of experience in sales and marketing and business development.

Robinson Nugent Inc. has named Gerrie M. Van Alst director, Product Design Engineering, Europe and Michael P. Kane sales and marketing manager of its CableLink Inc. subsidiary. Van Alst has 18 years of experience in solid product development; most recently, Kane was VP, sales and marketing at Escod Industries.

Roger Zimmerman has been named director of operations at TEGAM Inc. Most recently, Zimmerman was operations manager at Bird Electronics.

Quad Systems Corp. has named Ross Fraser general manager and director of Quad Europe Ltd. (QEL). Most recently, Fraser was head of marketing and sales for Macrotron’s automated optical and x-ray inspection operations in the UK.

Hittite Microwave Corp. has promoted Norman G. Hildreth to director of market- ing and business development and Stephen G. Daly to director of sales. Prior to the appointments, Hildreth was director of sales and Daly was principal sales and applications engineer for the company.

First Source Inc. has named Rick Verreault East Coast sales manager. Verreault has more than 15 years of manufacturing, engineering and sales experience in RF and microwave components.

CTS Corp.’s interconnect systems business has named Bernie Cairns materials director. Most recently, Cairns was planning and procurement manager of Compaq Computer’s High Performance Systems Business. In addition, Catherine C. Edwards has been named director of human resources for the company’s resistor/electrocomponent business. Most recently, Edwards was human resources and organization development manager at Avery Dennison Corp.

Alpha Industries Inc. has appointed W. Thomas Taylor director of sales for North and South America. Most recently, Taylor was eastern regional sales manager at Murata Electronics.

ANADIGICS Inc. has appointed Kenneth W. McCauley to the newly created position of director of field sales. Most recently, McCauley was director of sales in telecommunication and wireless applications at Lucent Technologies.

Interconnect Devices Inc. has pro-moted Anne Bush to central regional sales manager and Thad Sketers to western regional sales manager. Prior to the appointments, Bush was inside account manager and Sketers was product specialist for the company.

DB Products Inc. has named Julie Williams marketing manager of its Microwave Switch Division. Most recently, Williams held management positions at the Dow Key division of K&L Microwave Inc. and Ducommun Technologies.

Richard J. Newman , chairman of the board of Voltronics Corp., died December 31, 1999 at age 79 following a brief illness. Newman founded Voltronics Corp. in 1963 and remained active in the company until the last weeks of his life.

REP APPOINTMENTS
Micro Networks Corp. , Worcester, MA, has named two companies to represent its precision microelectronic frequency sources and signal processing components and subsystems. ERA Inc. , Commack, NY, will provide coverage in northern New Jersey, metropolitan New York and Long Island; Luscombe Engineering Company Inc. , Longmont, CO, will provide coverage in Colorado and Wyoming.

Southwest Microwave Inc.’s Microwave Products Division , Tempe, AZ, has selected two companies to represent its complete line of performance microwave connectors and adapters. GLX Inc. will provide coverage in Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Montana and Idaho; McBride Scientific Sales Inc. will provide coverage in Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Arkansas.

KMW Inc. , Cerritos, CA, has selected American Microelectronics to provide professional sales and service to the engineering and purchasing departments of OEM electronic equipment manufacturers in the Midwest. Sales manager George Brandau can be reached at (262) 375-4339, fax (262) 375-4396 or e-mail: gbrandau@ix.netcom.com.

Palomar Technologies , Vista, CA, has selected Electronic Scientific Engineering Ltd. (ESE) to represent the company’s products in Hong Kong and China.

Leider Development , Monrovia, CA, has selected First Source Inc. , San Jose, CA, to represent its full line of catalog and custom waveguide components.

DB Products Inc. , Pasadena, CA, has appointed five companies to represent its complete line of RF and microwave electromechanical switching products. Cain-Sweet Co. will cover Washington, Oregon and Canada; Jay Stone and Associates will cover northern California and Nevada; Thorson Desert States Inc. will cover Arizona, New Mexico, southern Nevada and El Paso, TX; The Thorson Co. will cover Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas; and W. Howard Associates will cover Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, Montana and Idaho.

WEB SITES
K&L Microwave Inc. , Salisbury, MD, has introduced e-commerce capabilities through its Order On-Line system. The site, located at www.klmicrowave.com, will give customers access to discount pricing for products such as base station duplexers, tunable filters and harmonic rejection tubular lowpass filters.

Tektronix Inc. , Beaverton, OR, has launched an on-line Measurement Store that will enable customers to purchase oscilloscopes, accessories and other measurement products. The site is located at www.tektronix.com.

IPC - Association Connecting Electronics Industries has launched its On-line Resource Center, a Web-based ordering system that will allow users to easily access the complete catalog of IPC products, including standards and specifications, training videos and CD-ROMs, and artwork and images. The site, located at www.ipc.org, offers complete search capabilities based on category, title, keyword or product number.

Wavetek Corp.’s Precision Measurement Division has designed a new Web site that provides up-to-date information and detailed descriptions on calibration, standards, software, waveform generation, and time and frequency products. The site also provides data sheets, specifications, application notes and press releases. It can be accessed at www.wavetek-precision.com

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