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52 PCB007 MAGAZINE I NOVEMBER 2020 Feature Interview by Barry Matties I-CONNECT007 I recently had the opportunity to visit IPS in their Cedar City, Utah, facility, where Mike Brask, founder and president of IPS, shared his business strategy and gave me a tour of the ex- panding manufacturing facility. IPS produces a wide range of PCB manufacturing equipment, including plating, DES, VCM, VRPs, ventila- tion, and spare parts for older equipment. As I toured the facility, it was easy to see there was plenty of work on the manufacturing floor. IPS now employs around 60 people and has integrated a number of automated tools in the manufacturing process. By doing this, he has optimized ma- terial usage and increased prod- uct quality. To facilitate the evolving busi- ness plan, Mike expanded his manufacturing space with a new 17,000-square-foot addition to pro- vide the space needed to accom- modate the increased business and to carry IPS into the future. Here, I share my interview with Mike. Barry Matties: Mike, let's start with an over- view of IPS, please. Mike Brask: In 2008, IPS made a conscious business decision regarding what's best for our customers in North America. Our custom- ers want American-made machines, and when those machines need parts and service, we can respond immediately. IPS is a multi-product, multi-industry supplier within North Amer- ica. IPS pushed harder to build that North American market and branch out into not just the circuit board industry but also to get into the aerospace equipment, general metal finish- ing, and semiconductor wet benches, where domestically, we're getting paid U.S. wages to afford our health- care and expenses of living in the U.S. That business plan is what we've been executing since 2008. We have not only recognized the need for a Customer Service De- partment over the years, but we have also realized the need to de- velop skilled labor. I have been building up that staff to be able Mike Brask

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