News | October 22, 1999

Newport Buys Commercial Optics Segment of Corning OCA; Corning Retains Telecom Business

In a move to enhance its bulk and industrial optics business, photonics player Newport Corp. (Irvine, CA) has acquired the Garden Grove, CA-based commercial optics portion of Corning OCA (Corning, NY) for an undisclosed cash amount. At first glance, the announcement appeared to state that Newport had purchased Corning OCA lock, stock, and barrel. Not so, says Corning manager of corporate information Paul Rugoski. "Corning did not divest any coating or assembly operations involving telecom applications," he clarified. "Anything associated with telecom we are maintaining."

The sale is consistent with Corning's effort to divest unrelated assets and focus on the telecom space. Following the 1997 acquisition of the then Optical Corp. of America, Corning sold off the non-telecommunications filter business of the company to Thermo Vision (see Thermo Vision to Acquire OCA Filter Business).

For Newport, the acquisition supplied optics fabrication capabilities, including grinding, polishing, and thin film coatings operations. According to vice president and CFO Robert Hewitt, the new capabilities will allow Newport to more thoroughly address the semiconductor and industrial metrology market. "The acquisition also lets us offer the customer an ability to outsource subassemblies which would combine optics, mechanical components, vibration and motion control," notes Hewitt.

Corning OCA will be folded into the company as a subsidiary in the Industrial and Scientific Technologies Division under the management of Bob Phillippy. The Garden Grove facility will remain open, and all existing Newport optics operations will be consolidated into that single location.