Ams buys Princeton Optronics for 3D sensing VCSELs

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Austrian sensor firm Ams has bought Princeton Optronics, a provider of Vertical Cavity Surface-Emitting Lasers (VCSELs).

The transaction expands Ams’ value chain in optical sensor solutions for mobile 3D sensing and imaging, consumer augmented and virtual reality, and automotive applications.

The transaction includes an upfront consideration of $53.3 million in cash and a substantial cash earn-out consideration related to realised 2017 and 2018 revenues, with a potential maximum earn-out value of $75 million.

Princeton Optronics develops high performance VCSELs that offer specific differentiation for mobile, consumer, automotive, and industrial applications. Broader adoption of 3D sensing in mobile applications could accelerate market growth for VCSEL light sources in the coming years. VCSELs can also be engineered to deliver high power pulsed lasers and laser arrays that support future automotive and industrial applications.

The acquisition adds to Ams’ portfolio of technology, including image sensors from Cmosis, the Belgian firm Ams purchased for €220 million in 2015.

Princeton Optronics operates an outsourced high volume supply chain with partners in Taiwan, the US, and the UK. Headquartered in Princeton, New Jersey, with a total of 37 employees, the company has an annual revenue run-rate of around $10 million and is profitable.

Alexander Everke, CEO of Ams, commented: ‘Adding the illumination source expands Ams’ optical sensor solutions offering, with the light path optics covered by Heptagon and the light sensor including filters by Ams. Leveraging this portfolio, Ams can now design and manufacture the most complete and differentiated optical solutions for future growth areas like mobile 3D sensing and imaging or automotive autonomous driving. Princeton Optronics is a strategic partner to Ams/Heptagon for optical sensing products already, so we see a range of potential future synergies from this exciting combination.’

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