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Ultratech Ships Model 2244i Stepper to a New U.S. Customer for Mix-and-Match with ASML Steppers; Milestone Marks Successful Completion of the Ultratech/ASML Cooperative Effort Initiated Last Year.

SAN JOSE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 26, 1996--Ultratech Stepper, Inc. (NASDAQ:UTEK), a leading supplier of photolithography systems used to manufacture semiconductors and thin film heads for disk drives, announced today that it has shipped its Model 2244i stepper to a major new U.S. customer that is implementing an Ultratech/ASM Lithography (ASML) mix-and-match solution to manufacture advanced microprocessors.

The shipment marks the successful completion of this phase of the strategic business alliance between Ultratech and ASML (Veldhoven, The Netherlands). Launched last year, the alliance was formed to help chipmakers reduce manufacturing costs and boost productivity in their advanced lithography operations.

According to Ultratech's Chief Executive Officer Arthur Zafiropoulo, "By coupling the exceptional performance of the ASML critical layer stepper with Ultratech's wide-field steppers, chipmakers can significantly reduce overall lithography costs. This is an important advantage in the competitive global environment as chipmakers strive to offer more chip functionality at lower costs, thus maintaining profitability."

Zafiropoulo added that the shipment represents Ultratech's first sale into this major U.S. chip manufacturing plant.

The Ultratech/ASML cooperative agreement has helped close the gap in available mix-and-match data between ASML and its competitors. Prior to the agreement, the installed base of mix-and-match solutions implementing ASML steppers was relatively small compared to those using lithography equipment from Canon and Nikon.

Through the joint program, which involved engineering, marketing, sales and executive management groups from both companies, Ultratech now has obtained extensive data on the parameters critical to success in a mix-and-match solution from virtually all commercially available critical-level stepper manufacturers. These parameters include overlay registration, lens distortion matching and mutual optimization of stepper management.

As a result, ASML customers can now obtain an optimized wide-field mix-and-match solution tailored specifically for ASML tools -- accelerating the typical adoption curve.

Commenting on the completion of the program, Zafiropoulo noted that all of the agreement's objectives had been achieved. "We're pleased to have been able to partner so effectively with ASML. Moreover, we see this as an important business model going forward since strategic alliances such as this can speed development and implementation of future lithography solutions," he added.

About Ultratech: Founded in 1979, Ultratech Stepper, Inc. designs, manufactures and markets photolithography steppers used worldwide in the fabrication of semiconductor and thin film heads for disk drives. The company produces high-technology products that substantially reduce the cost of ownership for manufacturers in the electronics industry.

Ultratech's common stock is traded on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol UTEK. The statements contained herein that are considered forward looking statements involve numerous risks and uncertainties. Such risk and uncertainties are set forth in the company's SEC reports.

CONTACT: Ultratech Stepper, Inc.

Laura Rebouche, 408/321-8835

or

MCA, Inc.

Diane Hayward, 415/986-8900
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Copyright 1996, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Nov 25, 1996
Words:455
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