Design007 Magazine

PCBD-Jan2014

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feature column the way i see it The Wrap-Up by Ray Rasmussen Publisher, I-Connect007 Good Riddance Tying up 2013 into a nice, tight bow, tossing it over my shoulder and then dusting off my hands comes to mind when trying to wrap up the year. I didn't much like the year that was. Politics seemed to take center stage for most of us as those we elected to keep us on track did nothing to improve the economy. A few changes should be noted. On the PCB side of things, we lost Endicott Interconnect Technologies to bankruptcy and in August, Hitachi Via Mechanics sold to the Longreach Group. Hitachi has claimed the global top spot over the last decade, filling Chinese factories with their drilling equipment. The reliance on that low-margin sector, even though they sold 22 The PCB Design Magazine • January 2014 a ton of machines, may have cost them their business. TTM COO Shane Whiteside left the company "to pursue other opportunities," and a few months later, his boss, Kent Alder, retired. Those two built one of the world's largest PCB companies, but it makes you wonder. Their departures were so close together, it almost feels like they were jumping ship, although there aren't any indications that there's anything wrong with the company. The stock is doing fine. But it makes you think. Other notable M&A activity includes Kyocera buying NEC Toppan Circuit Solutions; Graphic Plc buying Calflex; Elga Europe entering into a joint venture with Eternal Chemical;

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