FLEX007

Flex-Apr2018

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58 FLEX007 MAGAZINE I APRIL 2018 rigid-flex arena. And I was happy to get this deal done; we started on it in August 2017 and finally closed in January 2018. It's nice to have the additional capacity and depth from the Car- tel team, along with the additional offering of the flex and rigid-flex. The defense and aero- space certifications of Mil-P-55110 and 31032 were high-value targets, and to be honest, it was easier to acquire than it was to implement them in my current operations. So, we chose that path. Shaughnessy: So you don't have to train any- one... Robinson: Yes, you don't have to change the culture of your specific factories either. One is a high-reliability facility, a little bit more metic- ulous with its focus, while the other facilities are more advanced technology-focused and speed-focused. Stopping to complete 20 pages of paperwork every other day is kind of cum- bersome to our task of quick turn, but both strive for high reliability. And I'm really excited to introduce our quick-turn culture into those arenas. In the ini- tial month, I've been meeting with customers, especially the flex and rigid-flex. Even in the defense and aerospace segments, the technolo- gies are evolving very quickly, and there's a shortage of suppliers. So when you have our established, high-reliability factory and now you introduce our advanced technology, quick- turn capabilities, our meetings have been pretty eye-opening. Customers now know that they have a source that they can go to that offers a broader range of technology for them. Because they're being pressured, the defense industry is the same as ours—smaller, thinner, lighter, faster, more economical, more affordable, and more efficient. And so that's driving smaller, tighter lines, smaller features, everything that embraces the advanced technology space that APCT has niched itself in. So far the feedback's been tremendous, and the customer interest is through the roof com- pared to what we expected. So it's really good. We're really excited about it, looking forward to the rest of 2018 and working with it. As I said before, as with any acquisition, you don't buy a company; you buy the team. I'm excited about the depth of the team, and the experi- ence they have. Many of these people have been building printed circuit boards in their industry niche for 20–30 years, so it adds tre- mendous depth to APCT. It still is just people working with people, so to have a huge sur- plus of industry veterans is something special. Bruce McMaster has been one of the top leaders of our industry for years, since the DDI days. John Stein is running our Cirtech opera- tions, and he has many years in the design and manufacturing of flex and rigid-flex. I thought my team was the strongest team in the indus- try prior to this, so it's really exciting for me. As CEO, my job is team building, right? I put the best players on the field and have a good game strategy, and then execute with a good team. I am about to roll the PCB Patriots into the circuit board industry. Shaughnessy: You talked before about how you want to reach the designers and design engi- neers on the front end to do high-reliability and the high-tech work. Robinson: Absolutely. Because as you go to the advanced HDI space, there are still a lot of struggles in the design stages. They don't yet understand the critical steps to have high reli- ability and predictability in advanced technol- ogy builds. It requires balanced constructions, looking at what you can do, and making it

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