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2. Analog Devices Inc.
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5. Helix Tech. Corp.
6. ACT Manufacturing
7. Millipore Corp.
8. Talbots Inc.
9. Cytyc Corp.
10. FleetBoston

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  1. ACT Manuf.
  2. Provant Inc.
  3. Analog Devices
  4. Sapient Corp.
  5. Foilmark Inc.
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  2. Inverness Medical
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  1. Aztec Tech.
  2. Engage Inc.
  3. CMGI Inc.
  4. Telaxis Comm.
  5. NaviSite Inc.

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The Boston Globe OnlineBoston.com Boston Globe Online / Business / 2001 Globe 100

Firm's sale follows dramatic turnaround



Growth's rewards prove tough to sustain
A look at this year's Growth 50 list shows that in the new economy -- whatever that may come to mean -- growth is unpredictable and hard to maintain. Continued

1. ACT Manufacturing Inc.
2. Provant Inc.
3. Analog Devices Inc.
4. Sapient Corp.
5. Foilmark Inc.

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The Growth 50

ou may never have heard of Foilmark, of Newburyport, but you've probably come in contact with its products.

Those state emblems on your Massachusetts driver's license that make it harder to forge a counterfeit: Foilmark technology.

The bright packaging on Gillette Mach 3 razors: Foilmark.

Even the labels on Beringer Vineyards wine bottles use the company's films to create more attractive graphics.

This month, Foilmark was awarded a patent for inventing holographic shrink-wrap, extending one of its core technologies into a new area. The new product will hit the market later this year.

The ubiquity of Foilmark's products helped earn it a place on The Globe 100 list of top growth companies. The firm's two-year average sales grew 46.5 percent, while two-year average profit grew 196 percent.

It's the capstone on a dramatic turnaround that has seen Foilmark go from a loss of $3.3 million in 1997 to a profit of $3.5 million last year. Over the same period, revenue nearly doubled, to $66.7 million.

President and chief executive Joe Olsen says Foilmark's turnaround began in April 1999, when the company acquired one of its chief competitors, HoloPak Technologies Inc. Olsen says the combined companies were able to extract significant cost savings while investing in the higher-margin products that employ holography - three-dimensional photographic images created using lasers.

''Stamping foil is a more mature business, while holography is really in a growth cycle right now,'' he says.

But don't look for Foilmark on next year's Globe 100. Last month, the company signed a definitive agreement to be acquired by Illinois Tool Works Inc. for $54 million. Illinois will pay shareholders $6.36 a share - an 82 percent premium.



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