Ventex announced today that it has formed a joint venture with NTEK Consultants in Scotland. The purpose of the joint venture is to combine Ventex's service and support expertise in Canon lithography tools with NTEK's service and support expertise in Nikon lithography tools. In addition to sharing expertise, NTEK will be able to use Ventex's state-of-the-art lithography tool repair and refurbishment facilities in San Jose, California to carry out refurbishment, service, and support work. The joint venture represents the world's first company capable of providing integrated device manufacturers using both Canon and Nikon lithography tools with high-quality, cost effective non-OEM support. The joint venture will operate under the name Ventex and operations will begin immediately.

'This joint venture represents a strategic step forward for both companies,' said Jay Bukant, Vice-President of Operations for Ventex. 'Our customers would prefer to source parts, service, and support for their Canon and Nikon tools from one company rather than deal with separate companies. By forming this joint venture, we can now meet this customer demand and provide cost savings to a much larger percentage of the lithography tool installed base,' added Bukant.

'This joint venture makes perfect business sense,' commented Gordon MacIntyre, Europe and Asia Operations Director for NTEK. 'The efficiencies that will be created will add tremendous value to our respective firms and our capabilities will be greatly enhanced. The customer base will see substantial costs savings as a result.'

The formation of this joint venture is the latest in a series of strategic moves by Ventex to develop its product portfolio and expand its global reach. Ventex started as a company focused on Canon g-line and i-line stepper service and support, but it now supports both Canon and Nikon stepper and scanner tools for i-line and DUV applications.