|The global market for semiconductor inspection equipment being targeted by Olympus is forecast to be about 260 billion yen in 2000 and about 600 billion yen in 2004 (Olympus Optical Co. Ltd. figures). In particular, as the creation of new technologies and new markets is being predicted chiefly among American companies, Olympus has set up its subsidiary in the San Jose region, which is the center of the US semiconductor industry. Focusing on the semiconductor inspection process in the US market, OTA will provide direct sales and after-sales service, mainly for semiconductor inspection equipment. At the same time, in order to get up to speed quickly with technical information in that market, it will set up its own marketing function. In addition, it aims to produce US-sourced Market Requirements Statements (new product plans based on market requirements) and to develop semiconductor inspection equipment for worldwide use by expanding partner businesses with other companies and adopting new products and technologies. It will also extend its business globally with these new products and technologies by going through local subsidiaries in the Olympus Group. The newly established subsidiary, OTA, expects to achieve sales of about 8 billion yen in the US market and integrated sales of about 30 billion yen in the world market in five years' time.
Olympus develops, manufactures and sells semiconductor and Wafer/FPD inspection equipment, measuring instruments, biological microscopes and accessories in the scientific equipment business. Recently, with advancing integration of devices and the requirement for high precision inspection equipment, there has been a market need for high-level solutions that can be incorporated into the semiconductor production line. The company will be concentrating on this area in response to the growing potential market, and it has established the subsidiary as part of this effort in order to strengthen marketing that closely follows the large US market.