Planar Sells EL Business To Focus

Gail Chiasson, North American Editor

Beaverton, Oregon-based Planar Systems Inc. specialty display solutions company, has sold its its electroluminescent (EL) display business to Beneq Oy, Vantaa, Finland-based supplier of production and research equipment for advanced thin film coatings.

Under the terms of the transaction, consideration consists of a $6.5 million base purchase price, of which $3.9 million was paid in cash at closing and $2.6 million was paid in the form of a promissory note. The transaction terms also provide for up to $3.5 million in possible additional cash consideration which can be earned in calendar years 2013, 2014, 2015 based upon the EL business achieving certain financial results.

“The sale of our EL business to Beneq represents an important milestone in the execution of our strategic plan,” says Gerry Perkel, president and CEO of Planar. “We were able to add cash to our balance sheet and are now able to focus more of our attention and resources on our digital signage and interactive display product lines.

“In addition, we believe EL customers and employees will benefit from having the EL business now under the direction of a recognized leader in the use of atomic layer deposition (ALD) technology, a critical component of EL display production.”

Planar solutions are used by the world’s leading organizations in applications ranging from digital signage to simulation and from interactive kiosks to large-scale data visualization. The company was founded in 1983.

Planar will be working with Beneq after the closing to ensure customers are fully supported in the transition. As a result of the sale of the EL business, Planar is updating its forward looking estimates for the first quarter of fiscal 2013. The Company currently anticipates revenue in the range of $41 to $44 million.

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