Marconi is to sell its Marconi Optical Components (MOC) unit for £19.7m to Bookham Technologies, a move which will boost Bookham's products sold to optical network systems makers.
The acquisition is conditional upon shareholder approval, but the Oxford headquartered Bookham expects the deal to be complete by the first quarter of 2002 ending in March.
A company statement said: "We believe that the acquisition is an important step for Bookham towards our goal of becoming the leading global provider of integrated optical circuits and subsystems to the optical network systems manufacturers.
"We anticipate that our customers in the future will require more highly integrated subsystems incorporating both active and passive optical functionality."
The company, claims that the combination of its integrated silicon optical chips with MOC's active optical components will create more complete solutions.
Northamptonshire-based MOC makes optical components that increase traffic volumes over phone networks. These include fixed and tuneable lasers, high-speed gallium arsenide modulators, transmitters and erbium-doped fibre amplifiers.
For its financial year ended 31 March 2001 the Marconi subsidiary recorded a loss of £18.7m on turnover of £11.1m.
Steve Turley, chief commercial officer at Bookham, said: "We expect the recovery to come in about the third quarter of next year. Different products will be demanded when the market comes out of recession and this acquisition is preparing us for that."
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