Essilor and Nikon Establish Optics Research Center

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CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France—Essilor International [ISIN: FR 0000121667] and Nikon Corp. [Nikkei: 7731] are forming a 50/50 joint venture to conduct research and development activities mainly regarding materials, optics and ophthalmics. The new company, known as the Nikon and Essilor International Joint Research Center Co. Ltd., will be located in Kanagawa, Japan. It will draw upon Nikon's technologies used in IC and LCD steppers, scanners and camera-related products and technologies developed by Essilor for ophthalmic optical products. Operations are due to start mid-March, 2009.

The new venture extends the existing partnership between the two companies begun in January 2000 with the establishment of Nikon-Essilor Co., Ltd. for research, development, production and sales mainly for ophthalmic optics.