Canon to acquire venture-backed Redlen Technologies

Japan's Canon has agreed to acquire Redlen Technologies, a Saanichton, British Columbia-based maker of Cadmium Zinc Telluride semiconductor detector modules.

Japan’s Canon has agreed to acquire Redlen Technologies, a Saanichton, British Columbia-based maker of Cadmium Zinc Telluride semiconductor detector modules. No financial terms were disclosed for the deal, which is being done through a share transfer agreement. Redlen has been backed by several venture capital investors, among them In-Q-Tel, Pangaea Ventures, Pender Private Investments and Yaletown Partners.

Update: BetaKit reported the purchase price as being C$341 million.


TOKYO, Japan, September 9, 2021—Canon Inc. (“Canon”; Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan; Chairman and CEO: Fujio Mitarai) announced today that it has reached an agreement with Redlen Technologies Inc. (“Redlen”; Headquarters: British Columbia, Canada; President and CEO: Glenn Bindley) to conclude a share transfer agreement, making Redlen a wholly owned subsidiary of Canon.

In 2016, Phase V of Canon’s Excellent Global Corporation Plan, a series of rolling five-year initiatives, commenced under the policy of “achieving new growth through a grand strategic transformation” that included strengthening and expanding the medical business. In 2021, Phase VI commenced under the policy of “accelerating our corporate portfolio transformation by improving productivity and creating new businesses” and enhance competitiveness through company-wide realignment into a new industry-oriented business group structure. The Medical Group is one of those four new business groups.

Redlen possesses top-class technology for development and manufacture of Cadmium Zinc Telluride (CZT) semiconductor detector modules that are used in diagnostic imaging systems, security inspection systems and other devices. By using this technology in next-generation photon-counting CT systems (PCCT), it is expected to enable clearer imaging of specific substances in the body. This will allow early detection of very small lesions and subtle pathological changes, which has been difficult with conventional technologies.

Furthermore, since PCCT systems can obtain images with less noise using weaker x-ray radiation than conventional CT, it is expected to reduce the physical burden on patients by significantly reducing exposure dose and improving diagnostic accuracy with higher-resolution imaging.

With the acquisition of Redlen, Canon will obtain advanced technology used in CZT semiconductor detector modules, which play an important role in the development of PCCT. This will enable Canon Medical Systems Corporation, a subsidiary of Canon, to accelerate the development of competitive PCCT systems to strengthen the medical systems business. In addition, Canon will provide CZT semiconductor detector modules to medical equipment manufacturers around the world, thus helping strengthen Canon’s medical component business. In this way, Canon will continue to contribute to the advancement of global diagnostic imaging.

Comment from Toshio Takiguchi, Head of Medical Group
Senior Managing Executive Officer, Canon Inc.
“Redlen is the global leader in X-ray photon counting sensors in the medical, security and non-destructive inspection fields. In collaboration with Redlen, we expect to not only accelerate the development and mass production of next-generation CTs, but also expand our component business by deploying leading-edge sensors to a wide range of fields.”

Comment from Glenn Bindley, President & CEO of Redlen Technologies
“Redlen has enjoyed a very lengthy and productive collaboration with Canon Medical on photon counting CT. We’re excited to now become a member of the Canon group with access to the world class manufacturing and scale-up expertise within Canon that will help us accelerate market adoption of our industry leading radiation detection and imaging products.”

Photon Counting CT (PCCT)
With conventional CT systems, X-rays contrast generated when pass through the body is converted into light by scintillators and the light is detected by photodiodes to form images. However, PCCT systems measure X-rays by using semiconductor sensors to count their photons. The difference between the photons’ energy levels generates different levels of electric charges inside the semiconductor, which are detected and distinguished with high accuracy. This next-generation CT technology has the potential to enable high resolution image capture using lower radiation doses.