Photronics, Inc. (Nasdaq: PLAB), a sub-wavelength reticle solutions supplier, announced it is breaking ground for a 13,000-square-foot addition to its existing 40,000-square-foot manufacturing operation in Brookfield, Connecticut. Currently, the facility supports over 100 customers from approximately 9,000 square feet of clean room space, which ranges from class 10 to class 100. Once completed, the expansion will provide an additional 6,000 square feet of clean room space that will be certified to class 1 standards. Designs have been finalized and construction is expected to take approximately one year to complete. In addition to the investments in infrastructure and manufacturing technology over the next several years, total employment at the site is expected to grow more than 10% to over 270 people.
The Company initiated upgrades to its existing manufacturing infrastructure earlier this year in conjunction with its previously announced plans to consolidate its North American manufacturing network. As a result, the Connecticut operation is absorbing business being transferred to it from two North American sites being phased out of operation in Southern California and Florida. The Company's consolidation plan is expected to be complete during fiscal year 2001, which ends in October. Advanced manufacturing systems scheduled for installation in Connecticut include the ALTA advanced laser lithography system manufactured by Applied Materials, enhanced inspection systems from KLA-Tencor, and a variety of process, metrology and repair systems necessary to support 0.25 micron technologies. The current expansion and upgrade plan provides the facility with the flexibility to quickly install additional capacity or capability as the demands of the Company's customers require.
Photronics is a worldwide manufacturer of photomasks. For more information, visit http://www.photronics.com.