Australian microfluidics leader Minifab to become part of Schott

German-based glass and glass-ceramics technology company Schott has announced that it will acquire Australian engineering company MiniFAB, in a deal the companies described as linking highly complementary sets of expertise.

Melbourne-headquartered MiniFAB was established in 2002, and focusses on polymer microfiudics for the diagnostics, medical device and environmental monitoring markets. It employs 150 and was co-founded by Erol Harvey, a former Professor of Microtechnology at Swinburne University, and who won Entrepreneur of the Year at the prestigious Clunies Ross awards last year.

“The combining of our internationally renowned glass development and technology expertise together with Minifab’s comprehensive polymer technology suite will enable customers from the diagnostics industry to choose from a broad variety of options for their individual applications,” said Dr Heinz Kaiser, the member of Schott’s Board of Management responsible for its diagnostics business.

Michael Wilkinson, co-founder and acting CEO of MiniFAB, said the companies shared a passion, “for excellence in highly precise solutions for breakthrough diagnostics applications that improve the daily lives of millions of people. Joining forces will give us the unique possibility to expand our international footprint.”

The statement from Schott, which is over 130 years old and employs over 15,000 worldwide, said centres of excellence would be established in Australia and Germany, focussing on polymers and glass respectively. Schott’s glass technology is found in industries including “home appliance, pharma, electronics, optics, life sciences, automotive and aviation”. It hopes to complete the transaction within months, pending the customary closing conditions.

Picture: MiniFAB

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