valois (vls) was identified as a posterior group gene in the initial screens for Drosophila maternal-effect lethal mutations. Despite its early genetic identification, it has not been characterized at the molecular level until now. We show that vls encodes a divergent WD domain protein and that the three available EMS-induced point mutations cause premature stop codons in the vls ORF. We have generated a null allele that has a stronger phenotype than the EMS mutants. The vlsnull mutant shows that vls+ is required for high levels of Oskar protein to accumulate during oogenesis, for normal posterior localization of Oskar in later stages of oogenesis and for posterior localization of the Vasa protein during the entire process of pole plasm assembly. There is no evidence for vls being dependent on an upstream factor of the posterior pathway, suggesting that Valois protein (Vls) instead acts as a co-factor in the process. Based on the structure of Vls, the function of similar proteins in different systems and our phenotypic analysis, it seems likely that vls may promote posterior patterning by facilitating interactions between different molecules.