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Keithley Sells RF to Agilent

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CLEVELAND, Nov. 20, 2009 – Electronic test systems maker Keithley Instruments Inc. announced Thursday that it is selling its radio-frequency product line to Agilent Technologies Inc. of Santa Clara, Calif., for $9 million in cash.

The company is making the sale to focus on its core business, said Joseph P. Keithley, chairman, president and CEO, and to use that business to support new growth opportunities in areas such as energy-efficiency-related devices and materials.

“The impact of the economic downturn changed the expected timing of the returns we were anticipating from our RF product line, extending them beyond a time frame that we were willing to continue to support,” Keithley said. “Because we have placed a high emphasis on profitability in fiscal 2010 and beyond, we concluded that we could no longer continue to support our significant investment in RF measurement products.”

Under the deal, which is expected to close at the end of the month, Keithley said the majority of its RF team will become Agilent employees. Keithley’s RF design center is in Santa Rosa, Calif., and has about two dozen employees.

Keithley is receiving $9 million in cash for the business group and expects to realize a pretax gain in the range of $2.5 million to $3.5 million during its first quarter ended Dec. 31, 2009, as a result of the sale. It said the sales and earnings guidance it provided earlier this week remains unchanged.

The company is estimating sales for the first quarter of fiscal 2010 to range between $23 million and $27 million and earnings before taxes to range from a loss to a profit, excluding the impact of the gain on the sale of the RF product line.

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Nov 2009
The technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fiber optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics, and sophisticated systems. The range of applications of photonics extends from energy generation to detection to communications and...
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