27th November 2020
Konica Minolta signs definitive agreement to acquire Specim
Konica Minolta, Inc. (‘Konica Minolta’) announced today that Konica Minolta Sensing Europe B.V., its wholly-owned subsidiary for the sensing business, based in the Netherlands, has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Specim, Spectral Imaging Oy Ltd (‘Specim’).
Specim is the leading global supplier of hyperspectral imaging solutions, offering the broadest range of hyperspectral cameras, imaging spectrographs, systems, and accessories. Specim is a recognised leader and forerunner created by pioneers in the commercialisation of hyperspectral imaging and has assembled a team of the world’s leading engineers in optics, electronics, software, and machine vision. Specim’s vision of ‘Spectral imaging made easy’ means that its customers can rely on the scalability of its technology and on increasing ease of implementation through ‘out of the box’ solutions.
The hyperspectral imaging market is at an inflection point of rapid industrial growth, enabled by the rising adoption of machine vision. More and more machine builders are embracing the benefits of upgrading from visual cameras to hyperspectral imaging, with resulting improvements in quality, productivity and efficiency for their industrial end-customers. Specim has capitalised on this to grow its business by offering optimised solutions for machine builders as well as for its research and airborne customers.
Specim’s remarkable technological achievements and its global commercial success have so far been supported by its two Finnish investors, Nordic Option (since 2015) and Bocap (since 2017). Both investors welcome Konica Minolta as an acquirer, as this step forms part of a continuum of evolution for Specim.
In the spring of 2020, Specim’s investors and founders felt the company had reached a suitable point of maturity and opportunity, complemented by external interest, and initiated a competitive trade sale process resulting in offers from several global players.
Of these, the Board determined Konica Minolta to be the perfect home for Specim’s technology, customers and employees. This transaction will fuel Specim’s growth through deployment of its technology and capabilities to global industrial markets under the trusted brand and experienced leadership of Konica Minolta. Upon acquisition, Specim will maintain its existing offices and facilities in Oulu. Specim was advised on this transaction by Bryan, Garnier and Co.
With a 140-year history, Konica Minolta was a pioneer of photo-films and cameras and is now a global leader in imaging, vision and colour measurement. The company has cultivated four core technology fields (imaging, materials, optics and nano-fabrication), and continues to leverage its brand and rich technological heritage to reshape its business model toward higher value, more profitable technology fields and market opportunities.
“I am proud of our founders, world class employees and management team as well as our dedicated investors, who have together brought Specim to this point of market leadership in hyperspectral imaging. Konica Minolta shares our vision and values and will greatly support our business through improved sell-through and reach to global customers markets”, said Tapio Kallonen, CEO of Specim.
Hitoshi Kamezawa, Executive Officer, General manager of Konica Minolta’s Sensing Business Unit stated, “In Specim, we saw an innovation leader with a strong commercial product-set that shows huge growth potential just as the market for hyperspectral imaging is taking off. Specim’s products and skillsets are a good fit for our sensing business and will support Konica Minolta’s continued leadership in imaging, vision and colour measurement. Furthermore, Konica Minolta is working on addressing important social-responsibility challenges. Specim’s assets in hyperspectral imaging will significantly contribute to our growth strategy, which expands our business into the fields of safety, security, and environmental sciences. For us, this is one of the most important driving forces.”
The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions.
About Konica Minolta’s Sensing Business
Many of Konica Minolta products are used as de facto standard colour measurement instruments. Notably, Konica Minolta has more than a 50% share in the global market for display image quality measurement and inspection (estimated by Konica Minolta), and has a solid presence as the market leader.
Konica Minolta has actively promoted investments to strengthen its competitiveness. In 2012, the company acquired Instrument Systems GmbH (Germany), which develops high-end optical measuring instruments and has an outstanding track record in the high-performance measurement of displays and LED lighting devices. In 2015, the company acquired Radiant Vision Systems, LLC (U.S.), which excels at high-resolution 2D measurement instruments for displays, image processing software, and automatic appearance inspection systems. In 2019, the company acquired Eines Systems S.L. (Spain), which develops advanced visual inspection systems and solutions for the automotive production process.
Konica Minolta remains committed to developing its measuring instrument business as a market leader by offering various high value-added products and solutions that enable high-precision measurement of light and colour, and visual inspection for the ever-growing ICT and automobile industries.
Specim, Spectral Imaging Oy Ltd. is the world’s leading manufacturer of hyperspectral imaging instruments and systems. Specim’s international team with expertise in optics, electronics, software, machine vision and remote sensing, serves the market with the broadest range of hyperspectral cameras, imaging spectrographs, systems, and accessories. Specim products and solutions are being used in an increasing range of demanding industrial and science applications such as colour measurement, recycling, food sorting and quality assessment, pharmaceutics production quality, geological core logging and mineral mapping, environment monitoring, agriculture and vegetation, process analytical technology (PAT), life sciences, and many other chemical imaging applications. As a true pioneer and forerunner in the field of hyperspectral imaging, Specim celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2020.