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16 I-CONNECT007 I REAL TIME WITH... IPC APEX EXPO 2019 SHOW & TELL MAGAZINE ting tools in their hands, so they could experi- ence up close how the equipment works. Staff from program-sponsoring companies provided live demonstrations of the working equipment in their booths during the tour of the show floor and participated in panel discussions. It was truly a community of people coming together to make this happen. Another part of the experience and fun of attending IPC APEX EXPO is learning from individuals who are influential in the indus- try. This year's opening keynote speaker, JB Straubel, CTO and co-founder of Tesla Inc., drew on his extensive technical knowledge and experience. He also shared the history of Tesla, informing the standing-room-only crowd that innovation wasn't simply an add-on to Tesla's operations, but it was interwoven into every element of its busi - ness. Straubel also covered the perennial question, "How can my organization re-engineer itself to create products that address 21 st - century needs?" Further, 2019 saw the return of the IPC Hand Soldering World Championship to IPC APEX EXPO. With a perfect score of 634, Ryo- suke Matsunami from PWB Corpo- ration of Japan earned first place and the title of IPC Hand Solder- ing World Champion. Second place went to Wenji Zhang, Jiangsu Jin- ling Mechanism Manufacture Factory, China; and third place was claimed by Le Van Linh, Spartronics Vietnam Co. Ltd., Vietnam. Addi- tional competitors representing Britain, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, South Korea, and Thailand also participated in the event. When I spoke with exhibitors and attendees at this year's show, feedback was positive. Attend- ees said that networking and educational events and activities helped them find new ways to solve challenges. And the exhibition provided them with the opportunity to meet suppliers that could help them save time and money, and foster new business connections. Every year, IPC APEX EXPO provides me with unique ways of learning things that help me stay on top of current industry issues and concerns. Overall, I am proud of everything we accom- plished in San Diego, and I am equally as invigorated with everything we will do in the rest of the year. We are already working on putting together next year's show, which will take place February 1–6, 2020. I look forward to our industry's continued support in making IPC APEX EXPO 2020 a success. S&T Photos from IPC APEX EXPO 2019 are avail- able at Dr. John Mitchell is president and CEO of IPC— Association Connecting Electronics Industries. To read past columns or contact Mitchell, click here.

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