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December 2015 • The PCB Magazine 15 of "the best hospitality suite." By the late '80s, I recall thinking, after reviewing our NEPCON costs, that our hospitality suite had cost almost $1000 per every five minutes. In addition, one year the show management had decided to lengthen the show from three days to four, with an approximate 25% increase in fees. When the longer show did not work out and the show was reduced back to three days, most of the higher fees stayed in place. In other words, that show was becoming a very large expense with almost no part of the expenditures going back into our industry. The number one project as decided by the founding Suppliers Council was to organize and put on a trade show sponsored by the IPC. That way the costs could be greatly reduced, we would agree to stop the outrageous hospitality suites, and the actual show fees would go into the IPC coffers for the good of the industry. The next step was convincing the IPC board, none of whom were suppliers at that time, to get into "show business." There were those that felt it was a good idea and those that strongly felt that the IPC should have nothing to do with something as commercial as a trade show. There were fears that the openness and non-commercial atmosphere that was typical at an IPC meeting would be lost. To make a long story short, we convinced them by show - ing them that the show would not only save money for the suppliers, thus avoiding some perhaps necessary material price increases, but that we also could contribute many hundreds of thousands of dollars to the IPC coffers. This was money that could be used to invest in edu- cation, research, marketing, funding work on a roadmap, etc. As I recall the vote was not unanimous but it was decided that we would proceed. The first show, which at that time was only PCB fabrica- tion focused, was to be held the following year in Boston. In order to keep costs in control there would be no individual company hospitality suites. Instead there would be one big buffet and entertainment paid for by all suppliers equally and that would be open to all attendees. In fact, the first show included an outrageous buffet din - ner and drinks, and it was followed by a private concert given by the Boston Pops Orchestra. The first Printed Circuits Expo held in Bos- ton in 1994 marked a major event in the history of the IPC. More than 1,700 people attended the Expo, which included 275 booths representing 158 companies. The first Expo was not simply a show, however; it included a major effort to pro- vide technology exchange within the industry. It featured more than 60 technical papers, 17 workshops, and almost 100 committee meetings aimed at developing standards for the industry, as well as starting an effort to work with govern- ment for the good of the domestic industry. The key tenet was that Expo should be fair, focused and cost effective, by and for the in- dustry. Today we have the combined Printed Circuits Expo as well as the assembly-oriented APEX, both housed at the same location. This year it will be at the Las Vegas Convention Center. There have been a number of changes to the overall event, changes in the rules hav- ing to do with booth size, entertainment and even changes as to who makes up the govern- ing committees, but the overall tenets put in place, the overall goals and objectives put in place over two decades ago still guide the exhi- bition today. PCB Fein-lines A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE INCEPTION OF IPC ExPO Dan Feinberg is the owner and president of Feinline associates Inc. " By the late '80s, i recall thinking, after reviewing our nepCon costs, that our hospitality suite had cost almost $1000 per every five minutes. "

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