I-Connect007 Editor's Choice: Five Must-Reads for the Week

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In this week leading up to Christmas, we have a little bit of everything. Pete Starkey has a review of the most recent EIPC Technical Snapshot, while Tom Kastner discusses the dwindling number of PCB companies in North America. Are we really down to 170 companies? But as Tom says, the news isn’t all bad.

IPC reports that North American PCB sales up 26.1% in November YOY, and the book-to-bill is dead-on at 1.00. Cybord CEO Zeev Efrat explains how his company can provide 100% component inspection. And I have an interview with a student I ran into at PCB Carolina who is working toward his “dream job” on being a technician. As Alex Barile says, he’d hate to work at a desk all day; he likes to install equipment. 

I hope you all have a fantastic holiday season. See you on the flip side! 

PCB Carolina: Alex Barile Studying for His Dream Job
Published December 22

During PCB Carolina, I met with Alex Barile, a student at Wake Tech who’s studying for his “dream job.” He already builds custom computers, and he knows he doesn’t want to sit at a desk all day; he’d rather be installing and uninstalling equipment. Are you working at your “dream job”? Yes, young people are coming into this industry. It’s a great time to be working in electronics.

EIPC Technical Snapshot: ‘There Is No Green Without Digital’
Published December 22

Our intrepid technology editor Pete Starkey wrote a great review of the 20th EIPC Technical Snapshot. Speaker Pia Tanskanen of Nokia discussed the continuing move toward ESG (environmental, social, governance) in the electronics industry. This concept has been spreading for a few years, and Pia explains how Nokia hopes to embrace “doing well by doing good.”

North American PCB Industry Sales Up 26.1% in November
Published December 21

North American PCB sales rose 26.1% in November, while bookings were down 4.1% compared to last year. As IPC’s Shawn DuBravac explains, “order volume remains muted.” There are still some supply chain kinks that need to be worked out, but it looks like we’re on a positive track.

Cybord: 100% Component Inspection Is Here
Published December 21

Nolan Johnson recently spoke with Cybord CEO Zeev Efrat, whose company claims to provide 100% component inspection services. As Zeev points out, there are millions of components on PCBs; how can anyone achieve 100% inspection? Cybord seems to have found a way. Check it out.

Punching Out: When Less Might Actually Be More
Published December 20

Pop quiz, hot shot! How many PCB companies are left in North America? I would have said 250, but as columnist Tom Kastner points out, GP Ventures pegs that number at 170, down from 199 less than two years ago. Yikes. But the news is not all bad. Read on.



Suggested Items

Catching Up With John Johnson, New Director of Business Development at ASC

09/28/2022 | Dan Beaulieu, D.B. Management Group
It’s always good to catch up with old friends, especially when you can start working together. I recently spoke with my friend John Johnson, who has joined American Standard Circuits as the director of business development. At ASC, John will be using the Averatek A-SAP process that he was previously involved with. He shares some of his background and provides insight on the best ways to use this semi-additive PCB fabrication process that opens the capability window for forming trace and space.

Unimicron July Sales Up 29% YoY

08/22/2022 | Unimicron
Taiwan-based printed circuit board (PCB) manufacturer Unimicron Technology Corp. has posted July sales of NT$11.78 billion ($390.77 million at $1:NT$30.14), down by 4.4% from the previous month but up by 29% year-on-year.

Catching Up with Prototron’s Lee Salazar: Sales in the New Frontier

07/12/2022 | Dan Beaulieu, D.B. Management Group
In the business world, salespeople arguably were the most affected by the pandemic. These professionals had to be the most creative when trying to ply their trade. They had to work from home, make phone calls in lieu of face to face, and learn how to use social media networks and newsletters. This was all to reach their customers—who also were working from home. Even when they got vaccinated and managed to hit the road, they often found that their customers’ doors were closed and they were not allowed inside, if their particular contact was there at all. Many times, they had to resort to meeting their customers in parking lots or restaurants with outdoor dining. And guess what? It’s not even over yet. So, how does a salesperson create success when so much seems to have changed? I reached out to Lee Salazar of Prototron to learn how he met the challenges, and his tips for others who are moving forward.

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