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Fredrik Arp to join Qioptiq as Chairman and CEO


New leader has held senior executive positions in large global
companies for the last 20 years, most recently as CEO and president
of the Volvo Car Corporation


January 8, 2010


Qioptiq today announced that after ten years as its CEO, Benoît Bazire has left the Group in agreement with Candover, the principal shareholders, to pursue alternative business opportunities. Qioptiq, which was formerly known as High Tech Optics, was acquired by Candover and its management in a buyout from Thales in December 2005.  Mr Bazire will retain an economic interest in Qioptiq.

Mr Bazire will be replaced by Fredrik Arp who joins the company as Chairman and CEO, effective immediately. Mr Arp has held senior executive positions in large global companies for the last 20 years, most recently as CEO and president of the Volvo Car Corporation.

Nils Stoesser, a partner at Candover, said: “We thank Benoît for the quality of his leadership as head of Qioptiq.  During the four years we worked with him, he has developed the company both internally, including overseeing the construction of a state-of-the-art optics factory in Singapore, and externally by way of acquisitions, including the purchase of Linos in Germany and Point Source in the United Kingdom.  The result has been to position Qioptiq as a world-leading photonics company. We wish Benoit every success in his new endeavors.”

Benoit Bazire said:  “I have had a great time with the Qioptiq team, and I would like to thank them all for their dedication and professionalism. With Candover’s support we have been able to move the business forward significantly, in line with our vision at the time of the buyout: Qioptiq has become a major sector consolidator via a selective acquisition strategy; we have invested in our resources and our people to make the group a market leader in professional high-tech optics; and we have built up a business model which has enabled the company to weather the current economic storm. ”

Additional information:

Benoît Bazire served as Managing Director of the High Tech Optics (HTO) activities of the Thales Group between 2000 and 2005.   He was appointed CEO of the Qioptiq Group in 2005.  Mr. Bazire is an alumnus of the Ecole Polytechnique and Ecole Nationale d’Administration and a graduate of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Techniques Avancées as well as Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris, Previously, Mr. Bazire worked for a number of years with the French Government, including time with the Minister of Defence.  Prior to joining HTO, he held a number of senior management positions within Thales.

Fredrik Arp has held senior executive positions in large global companies for the last 20 years, most recently as CEO and president of the Volvo Car Corporation, and before that as CEO of Trelleborg AB, and PLM AB, now part of Rexam plc.  In addition, he has held numerous board positions in companies operating across a variety of sectors such as medical technical products, branded capital goods and technologies and systems suppliers. M. Arp holds a Bachelor of Science in Business and Economics, as well as being a Doctor in Economics h.c from the University of Lund in Sweden. Since 2004, Mr Arp has been involved with Candover in various portfolio company roles, and acted as a Senior Advisor to Candover in the Industrials sector.

Candover is a long established European buyout house, with a 30-year track record of making successful investments and realisations.  The company was established in 1980 as the UK’s first dedicated buyout fund, and today has a portfolio of companies across Europe, with a particular emphasis on the UK, Benelux, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Scandinavia.


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