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SMT007-Feb2020

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FEBRUARY 2020 I SMT007 MAGAZINE 91 Ghalili: Our greatest challenge is bring- ing these concepts to the customers and other people. Many people look at the hard, mechanical, tangible, or build value. Matties: You're talking about the intel- lectual or social value. Ghalili: Yes. Those things are hard to quantify or put finances to. Again, one of our challenges has been, "How do we educate our customers, suppliers, and the whole chain that there is a value to what we are bringing into the work environment?" Matties: For many, it's about the bottom-line dollar, though. Ghalili: Exactly. People don't see that in reality, it also brings financial value when you don't have that turnover, when you're not going through constant reeducation, and when you don't have the quality problems because of these turnovers. Somehow, people cannot look at these values from a financial perspective. Matties: But what you're selling is stability, and when you have stability in your supply chain, you have a better supply chain. What type of customers do you primarily deal with? Ghalili: We deal heavily with customers looking for IP and front-end engineering needs. Matties: Are there any market segments that you're specializing in, or is it across the spec- trum? Ghalili: We are not involved in the low-end market. We mostly do products that bring high-end value to the customers. We do a lot of test boxes on the systems that are business- to-business products. Matties: There's a regional trend going on in manufacturing: build it where you need it. As we see labor costs being eliminated in operation, we're realizing that factories can be built anywhere, especially on the assem- bly box build side. With the amount of work that you're producing in China, how much of it is being exported, and how much is being retained domestically? Ghalili: Right now, 85–90% is shipped in China, and 10–15% is exported. Matties: Are you happy with that mix? Ghalili: We're fine with that. Our long-term objective, again, is to build it in the region for the region. I do not understand why we are wasting resources shipping goods from one part of the world to the other part. For me, energy efficiency and environmental impact are bigger issues than anything else. Matties: Fuel, energy, and time are all major factors. When you look at the U.S., how do you see the market? With the shift in politics and tariffs, is there more opportunity for you now? Ghalili: Definitely. The U.S. market is strong because of various cultural integration. The strength of the U.S. is its diversity, and that's what brings its R&D expertise. I think manu- facturing will grow in the U.S. and the type of manufacturing will not be what we are

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