October 25, 2004

SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 25, 2004--Novellus Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq NM: NVLS), the productivity and technology leader in advanced deposition, surface preparation and chemical mechanical planarization processes for the global semiconductor industry, today announced the appointment of Dr. Fusen Chen (45) as senior vice president of Asia-Pacific Operations. Dr. Chen will oversee all of Novellus' offices in the region, including China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan and Southeast Asia. He will be responsible for driving all aspects of Novellus' operations in the region, including sales, marketing and customer support. Dr. Chen will focus on increasing Novellus' business through strategic customer engagements and by expanding Novellus' capabilities throughout the Asia-Pacific region.

Dr. Chen joins Novellus after 10 years at Applied Materials, where he most recently worked as the group vice president and general manager for the Copper Physical Vapor Deposition (PVD) & Interconnect Product Business Group. Prior to joining Applied, he worked at LSI Logic and SGS-Thomson Microelectronics.

Dr. Chen received his Bachelor of Science degree in Materials Science & Engineering from the National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan and his doctorate in Materials Science & Engineering from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. He holds more than 60 U.S. patents and has authored over 50 technical publications.

"The Asia-Pacific region represents over 70 percent of the market in our industry. Dr. Chen will be a major asset in strengthening our performance in this critical region," said Tom St. Dennis, Novellus' executive vice president of sales, worldwide service and marketing. "As a respected leader, with strong knowledge of the industry and the region, Dr. Chen will be a great complement to Novellus' existing team as we expand our operations in Asia and worldwide."

"Safe Harbor" Statement Under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995:

The statement regarding Novellus' intention to expand its operations in Asia and worldwide, as well as other matters discussed in this news release that are not purely historical data, are forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, difficulties in establishing local footholds in foreign markets, and other risks indicated in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Actual results could differ materially. We assume no obligation to update this information. For more details, please refer to our SEC filings, including our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2003, our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 27, 2004 and June 26, 2004, and our Current Reports on Form 8-K filed July 12, 2004, September 10, 2004 and September 24, 2004.

About Novellus:

Novellus Systems, Inc., an S&P 500 company, manufactures, markets and services advanced deposition, surface preparation and chemical mechanical planarization equipment for today's advanced integrated circuits. Our products are designed for high-volume production of advanced, leading-edge semiconductor devices at the lowest possible cost. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., with subsidiaries throughout the United States, as well as in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Ireland, Israel, Italy, India, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan, we are a publicly traded company on the Nasdaq stock exchange (Nasdaq: NVLS) and a component of the Nasdaq-100 Index®. Additional information about Novellus is available on our home page at