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78 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I JANUARY 2020 Flex Segment Starts Strong in 2020 What the Flex? by Andy Shaughnessy, I-CONNECT007 I hope you all had a great holiday season and a happy new year. Can you believe it's 2020 al- ready? The flex market is looking good as we move into the new year. Flex is still the most dynam- ic segment in our industry, and it's expected to remain strong in 2020 and beyond. The flex market isn't bulletproof, but it's spread out across a variety of industries and end-prod- ucts, so it's not likely to take a major hit if one sector tanks. Many analysts were worried that the slow- down in the automotive sector—the first since the 2008 downturn—would lead to a drop in demand for automotive flex and rigid-flex. But flex keeps finding its way into new vehi- cles with automakers adding bells and whis- tles, such as advanced safety and lighting fea- tures, that require flex. Even if fewer new cars are sold this year, I imagine they will probably utilize more flex and rigid-flex than last year. In the meantime, other segments—medical,

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