CeramOptec Celebrates 30th Anniversary, Appoints New Vice Managing Director

CeramOptec in Bonn has become a leading global supplier of optical fiber products for industrial and medical applications. (Source: CeramOptec)

CeramOptec has not always been the subsidiary of the medical technology specialist Biolitec. The optical fiber manufacturer was completely independent when it was established in 1988. During the early years, the medical sector was not a significant business module either, since the primary focus was set on optical fiber products for laser technology, sensors, and spectroscopy. It was only during the first decade after its foundation that aside from optical fiber production, medical applications, including laser development, started to appear on the radar. That led directly to the first milestone in the company’s history: The development of the world’s first diode laser for photodynamic therapy – a minimally invasive procedure for the treatment of tumors and other tissue changes, which is primarily applied in oncology and ophthalmology.

The increasing focus on medical technology eventually triggered the foundation of Biolitec AG in 1999. During the next two decades, Biolitec advanced to become one of the world’s leading corporations in medical laser technology, which eventually caused it to become – despite being younger – the parent company of CeramOptec. The structural changes also caused a reorientation of the research and development work at CeramOptec. The therapy laser that had been developed in the 1990s is still manufactured by CeramOptec. The development of advanced medical laser equipment was, however, gradually transferred entirely to Biolitec. Both companies are of course still closely connected through the optical fiber products for medical lasers.

One of the highlights of CeramOptec‘s optical fiber developments: The Optran NCC-Fiber, whose rectangular core is able to modify the structure of laser beams. (Source: CeramOptec)

CeramOptec’s most important business sector is nowadays – just as during the early days – the production of high-quality optical fibers for industrial applications. The company’s main focus is in particular set on customizable products, which can be tailored precisely to a client’s requirements. As a matter of fact, all fiber optic products from CeramOptec can be customized. That, of course, applies to the highlights of CeramOptec’s fiber optic development as well: The Optran NCC-Fiber, whose rectangular core is able to modify the structure of laser beams, as well as the Optran UV NSS-Fiber – the first optical fiber that does not suffer from a dampening effect under UV-light. The Optran NCC-Fiber, for example, is available with various core-jacket ratios as well as hexagonal and octagonal cores and jackets. That extremely high degree of flexibility has become possible, because CeramOptec is the only manufacturer of industry specific optical fibers who produces not only fibers and fiber bundles, but also the glass blanks they are based on – thus enabling the company to implement customized designs throughout the production process. The reason being, that these so-called pre-forms, that are drawn into actual fibers in a drawing tower later in the production process, already contain all the characteristics of the future optical fiber.

CeramOptec’s entire production of optical fiber products was transferred to Latvia in 2014. CeramOptec SIA, located in Riga was established for that purpose in 2013, while the actual production facilities are located nearby Livani. The expansion into the Baltic region marks only the latest step in an internationalization process, that started much earlier: The Malaysian branch had been founded already in 1991, followed by offices in China (Beijing), India (Bangalore) and the United Arabian Emirates (Dubai). In addition, CeramOptec has distribution partners in France, the U.S.A., Japan and South Korea, which has established the 30-year-old company as a real global player.

The Biolitec subsidiary celebrated its 30th anniversary, together with about 80 invited guests on June 22, 2018 at the company’s premises in Bonn. CeramOptec has no intention to rest on its laurels, as managing director Dr. Roland Dreschau pointed out. “Of course, we are proud of having established an international presence and a reputation for being a consistently growing, innovative manufacturer of optical fibers”, said Dreschau. “If we lean back and relax, however, someone else will take over immediately in this very competitive industry.” The optical fiber specialist is therefore determined to continue developing new fiber optic technologies during the next 30 years and establish new target markets along the way.

Holger Bäuerle appointed vice managing director

CeramOptec has expanded its top management: Holger Bäuerle, age 51, has been promoted to vice managing director and will now act as proxy for managing directors Dr. Roland Dreschau and Dr. Damian Plange, as of July 01, 2018. The experienced sales manager joins the company since February 2015 and currently holds the position as CeramOptec’s head of industrial sales. Prior to being with CeramOptec, he was sales manager with a manufacturer of LWL-connectors for many years.

Holger Bäuerle, the vice managing director (Source: CeramOptec)

Besides his new role as vice managing director, Mr. Bäuerle will maintain leadership of the Industrial Sales Department of the optical fiber specialist at Bonn. In this position, he has been crucial for the success of the company in the field of industrial and medical laser applications in recent years. In this context, he was also deeply involved in the introduction of several of CeramOptec’s key products, e.g. the Optran UV NCC-Fibers and the Optran UV NSS-Fibers. In addition, Mr. Bäuerle strongly promoted the business sector of customized optical fiber products according to client specifications.

“Due to his experience as a sales manager and extensive expert knowledge of the optical fiber industry, Holger Bäuerle has advanced our company decisively and opened new market segments in recent years,” emphasizes Dr. Roland Dreschau, CeramOptec’s managing director. “We are very glad being able to count on his knowledge and experience, even on the highest level of our company, while he still will be focusing on target marketing areas as our sales manager.” (Source: CeramOptec)

Link: CeramOptec, a subsidiary of biolitec AG, Bonn, Germany

Further reading: H. Bäuerle & B. Hracek: UV‐Curing: New Option for Light Transmission, online 10 February 2017; DOI: 10.1002/opph.201700001

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