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Olympus Renews Distribution Contract with Fisher HealthCare

Melville, N.Y., October 20, 2003 - Olympus America Inc. and Fisher HealthCare, a division of Fisher Scientific Company LLC, have extended their U.S. sales, marketing and distribution contract. The renewed agreement gives Fisher HealthCare exclusive rights to distribute Olympus AU400e analyzers and related reagents and consumables for clinical chemistry testing within the U.S. hospital market. It also provides for nonexclusive distribution of Olympus laboratory systems and products within physicians' office labs and clinics in the United States.

The AU400e provides true random-access testing, pediatric sampling and immediate STAT interrupt, 80-sample loading capacity and continuous sample-rack feed with throughput of up to 400 tests per hour (800 with electrolytes). The AU400e is part of the Olympus family of high-speed automated analyzers, which features an extremely broad test menu, random-access capability, and standardization throughout the line for the most cost-effective testing in the market today.

"Olympus is pleased to offer our customers in hospitals across the United States the unmatched expertise of Fisher HealthCare's respected nationwide network of representatives. By extending our distribution agreement with Fisher HealthCare, Olympus is ensuring that America's hospitals get access to an exceptional level of service and product performance," said Stephen Wasserman, Group Vice President, Diagnostic Systems Group of Olympus America Inc.

The Olympus-Fisher HealthCare agreement will help laboratories meet their testing requirements, while providing for the future. Olympus chemistry-immuno systems are flexible and well suited for hospital and clinic laboratories of all sizes, from a hospital's central lab to rapid-response facilities, satellite installations, and even smaller private-office laboratories.

Additionally, as the hospital market continues to consolidate, the standardization Olympus offers throughout its full line of chemistry analyzers becomes increasingly important. The AU400e is a member of the Olympus family of random-access chemistry systems, which includes the AU640e, AU2700, and AU5400. All analyzers within the family of Olympus systems are standardized, providing the same comprehensive 122-test menu (including chemistry, specific proteins, DAT, TDM, thyroid and esoteric tests), user protocols and results, along with common reagents, consumables, calibrators, user interface, and parts.

To learn more about the AU400e, visit the Olympus Web site at www.olympusamerica.com/diagnostics. For more information about Fisher HealthCare, visit www.fishersci.com.

About Fisher HealthCare
Fisher HealthCare is a leading supplier of diagnostic tests, equipment, chemicals, and other products used by national laboratory networks, independent clinical laboratories, hospitals, and physicians' offices. Information about Fisher HealthCare and its products is available on the company's Web site at www.fishersci.com.

About Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group
Since 1981, Olympus Diagnostic Systems Group has provided innovative solutions that meet the high productivity demands of hospitals, integrated healthcare delivery networks, reference labs, blood banks and pharmaceutical labs. Offering the broadest standardized line of random access, chemistry-immuno analyzers and lab automation systems, Olympus' solutions save laboratories time, maximize productivity and deliver fast, reliable results.

About Olympus
Olympus is a precision technology leader, designing and delivering innovative solutions in healthcare and consumer electronics worldwide.

Olympus works collaboratively with its customers and its parent company, Tokyo-based Olympus Corporation, to leverage R&D investment in precision technology and manufacturing processes across diverse business lines. These include:

  • minimally invasive diagnostic and surgical endoscopes;
  • advanced clinical and research microscopes;
  • lab automation systems, chemistry-immuno and blood bank analyzers and reagents; and
  • digital and film cameras, and digital voice recorders.
  • In the U. S. and Canada, Olympus serves healthcare, scientific and commercial laboratory markets with integrated product solutions and financial, educational and consulting services that help customers efficiently, reliably, safely, and easily achieve superior results. Olympus is the leader in gastrointestinal endoscopy and clinical and educational microscopes. The company's market-leading consumer electronics business spans North and South America. For more information, visit www.olympusamerica.com.