Raylase Group has its headquarters in Weßling, Germany and a subsidiary in China, located in Shenzhen. Both entities are doing production of components, submodules and software to deflect, modulate and control laser beams in a broad variety of applications e.g., marking, drilling, cutting, engraving and welding in growing and demanding markets worldwide.
Peter von Jan (CEO), Thomas Baab (Head of Production), and Erwin Wagner (VP New Technologies) (left), receive the EPIC Phoenix Award 2016 from Kurt Weingarten, General Manager of Lumentum in Switzerland, member of the board of directors of EPIC. The award was presented on 21 April during the EPIC’s annual general meeting in Zurich, Switzerland.
“We are really proud to receive this EPIC Phoenix award. For us, it is an honour and recognition to be elected by such a remarkable group of European entrepreneurs in photonics. From the very beginning, we believed in the importance of photonics. We worked hard and focused to overcome all the obstacles and achieve our goals. We will continue with our efforts to grow and remain a very successful and important member of EPIC.” says Peter von Jan, CEO and Co-Founder of Raylase, after being presented with the prestigious award.
Raylase AG was founded in 1999 as Scanpro Technology GmbH by 5 former employees of General Scanning Inc. The talents of these founders were R&D, production, sales, and after sales service. At that time, the new company managed by Peter von Jan got a lot of encouragement by European Companies which wanted to buy scan heads to deflect and control laser beams apart from the well-known suppliers from Germany and USA.
The founding team was very enthusiastic but short with capital. Fortunately, it was possible to collect first orders from important customers based on preliminary drawings and product specifications. Based on these orders, they were then able to convince private and venture capital investors to do a first financing round. They collected sufficient money to rent their first offices in Krailling (near Munich), hire first employees and slowly start with R&D and production. They developed XY-Scan heads, 3-Axis systems with pre-focusing optics, control cards and software. At the same time they changed the company´s name from Scanpro Technology GmbH to Raylase AG.
In 2000, the company did a second investment round while at the same time they started a challenging program to develop optic-mechanical solutions to measure and keep output-power of cw CO2 lasers stable and control the laser power related to the velocity of the focus in the processing field with their Powstab method. In 2003, the company moved to a larger location in Weßling, close to Munich. In 2004, Raylase received an innovation award from the Bavarian Government for its Powstab Technology and Raylase was elected as one of the three most successful start-ups in Bavaria from 1998 to 2002. In 2007, Raylase started a Representative Office in Shenzhen in China. In 2009, the company suffered as many others from the economic crisis and sales dropped significantly. But they avoided cutting down staff and only reduced working time to 50%. In parallel they intensified activities in China to compensate the loss of business with their main customers in Germany.
As markets continue to change rapidly and additional competitors from China show up in standard marking applications, Raylase focuses on its key-technologies which include 3D-Technology in combination with vision control and offers more and more application solutions instead of pure components. These activities are supported by local application labs in Germany and China and certified repair- and service centres in St. Petersburg, Russia and Sao Paolo, Brazil.
Today, the Raylase Group is a growing successful and profitable organisation with more than 100 employees worldwide and an excellent international network. Raylase is independent from banks and one of the most important technology leaders in their field of activity e.g. additive manufacturing, 3D processing, laser cutting and laser welding.
“The story of Raylase is an example that success is no accident, it is hard work, determination, perseverance. The EPIC Phoenix award is a symbol of the challenging realities that entrepreneurs face and the journey that this entails, I am honoured to present the award to the founders of Raylase!” says Kurt Weingarten, General Manager of Lumentum in Switzerland, member of the board of directors of EPIC.