Littelfuse Announces Acquisition of Semitron

DES PLAINES, Illinois, July 19, 2002 -With the acquisition of Semitron, Littelfuse, Inc. (NASDAQ/NMS:LFUS) lessens concern over choosing the best application-specific technology to protect increasingly susceptible electronic devices, by offering all major overvoltage (OV) and overcurrent (OC) protection technologies. (Electrostatic discharge events alone now account for over 30% of all field failures of electronic devices.) The all cash purchase of the Swindon, UK maker of next generation gas plasma surge suppressors, high power silicon avalanche diodes and thyristors from solid state relay maker Crydom, completes Littelfuse’s current product line of varistors, low power silicon diodes, polymer-based, high speed ESD suppressors and a range of resettable and single-use fusing approaches. Semitron had global sales of approximately $12 million for the year ended December 31, 2001. Littelfuse had sales of $272 million for the same period.

“The circuit protection industry has not helped customers with all the confusing claims of what technology is best in transient voltage and over current protection. Now, with the addition of Semitron’s products, we offer it all,” says William S. Barron, Vice President and General Manager Electronics. Barron notes that 40 year-old Semitron has a reputation for being agile and innovative. “They went from no presence in high power dissipation ‘gas discharge tube’ based suppressors in 1993 to establishing a whole new category based on a faster, more environmentally compatible gas plasma approach.” Semitron’s Greentubesm eliminates reliance on radioactive gasses, while being offered in an advanced SMD package. Another example, notes Barron, is Semitron’s “Foldbaktm” diode, an enhancement of silicon avalanche diode (SAD) technology that significantly improves the power/size ratio. The addition of Semitron’s semiconductor fabrication facility will also help Littelfuse serve a wider customer base, observes Barron, because of the ability to customize semiconductor-based OV, OC and other circuit protection solutions into single packages, lowering manufacturing, inventory and development costs and offering potential size reductions.

The Semitron acquisition follows Littelfuse’s purchase in 1999 of Harris’ OV circuit protection business units and represents another level in its mission to be the industry’s foremost supplier in the circuit protection field. Semitron currently supplies products to a variety of global segments served by Littelfuse including automotive, telecommunications, industrial and consumer.

Customers can obtain more information about the combined product lines by viewing both companies’ Web sites at and or by contacting Littelfuse at (800) 999-9445 or +1 847-824-1188, or fax +1 847-391-0459.

About Littelfuse Founded in 1927, Littelfuse, Inc., the worldwide leader in circuit protection, offers the industry’s broadest and deepest portfolio of circuit protection products and solutions. Littelfuse devices protect products in virtually every market that uses electrical energy, from consumer electronics to automobiles to industrial equipment. In addition to its Chicago, Illinois, world headquarters, Littelfuse has more than 20 sales, distribution, manufacturing and engineering facilities in the Americas, Europe and Asia. Technologies offered by Littelfuse include Fuses; Gas Discharge Tubes (GDTs); Positive Temperature Coefficient Devices (PTCs); Relays, Controls, and Systems; PulseGuard® ESD Suppressors; SIDACtor® Protection Thyristors; TVS Diode Arrays (SPA™ Family of Products); Switching Thyristors; TVS Diodes and Varistors. The company also offers a comprehensive line of highly reliable Electromechanical and Electronic Switch and Control Devices for commercial and specialty vehicles, as well as underground Power Distribution.

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