11 September 2003 Oxfordshire, UK Lightwave--Bookham Technology plc, a provider of optical components, modules, and subsystems for fiber-optic communication networks, announced the completion of a major cost reduction initiative, the consolidation of its two main wafer fab facilities, following the acquisition of the Nortel Networks Optical Components (NNOC) businesses. This initiative has been completed four months ahead of the original target date.
As communicated at the time of the acquisition of NNOC in November 2002, the decision was taken to consolidate the Ottawa wafer fab facility, acquired through the acquisition, into the company's Caswell, UK, facility, a move which was targeted for completion in the fourth quarter 2003. The consolidation of the Ottawa facility was a large element of the company's cost reduction plans, with the full impact originally planned to start appearing in the first quarter 2004. By completing this consolidation ahead of schedule, the company should start seeing the full impact of the closure in the fourth quarter 2003.
As part of this restructuring, the Ottawa fab has completed a build of chip inventory, which was essential to the transition to insure continuity of supply for Bookham's customers.
Liam Nagle, chief operating officer, commented: "We are extremely pleased with the rapid integration of the two facilities. The Caswell facility has been upgraded. We have moved and installed equipment from Ottawa. Designs and manufacturing processes have been transferred and the fab is now functional, with initial product qualifications of chips built at the Caswell facility proceeding to plan."
Giorgio Anania, president and chief executive officer, added: "This last and most critical component of our cost-reduction and operational refocusing plan following the NNOC acquisition is now behind us. It moves us to a significantly lower spend rate in the fourth quarter 2003. The employees in both the transfer-out and the transfer-in teams have also come through excellently for us, beating production targets, timing and budgets. In addition, we have achieved this with no impact on customers."
As previously indicated, the consolidation of the Ottawa fab has impacted approximately 200 employees, of which approximately 75% have now left the company, and the remainder are expected to transition out as they gradually complete fab shut-down duties by the end of the year. The company maintains its research and development and customer support presence of approximately 70 employees in a separate nearby facility in Kanata.