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8 SMT Magazine • March 2016 by Stephen Las Marias i-coNNect007 Ensuring Profitability I don't think there is a one-size-fits-all ap- proach to ensuring a profitable business. This is especially true in the intensely competitive electronics manufacturing and assembly in- dustry, where product lifecycles and the ever- increasing complexity and sophistication of electronics products, among others, more often than not dictate the business strategies of these electronics manufacturers. But there are definitely sure-fire formulas for success when it comes to improving the bottom line and profits. According to an Entrepreneur article, there are three top secrets to market leadership: operational excellence—the ability to produce a company's products and services at a cost substantially lower than its competitors; customer intimacy—having a close relationship with customers based on an excellent knowl- edge of your customers' needs or business; and technological superiority—offering a product or service that's (technologically) superior to that of your competitors. In the electronics industry, one compa- ny comes to mind: Apple Inc. The creator of iPhone and iPad and the Mac, Apple has those three qualities that enable it to sustain revenue and net profit growth year after year, despite a very crowded consumer electronics market and macroeconomic uncertainties worldwide. From 2011 to 2015, Apple has posted net revenues of $108.25 billion, $156.5 billion, $170.9 billion, $182.8 billion, and $233.7 billion, respectively. Net incomes, meanwhile, were $25.9 billion, $41.7 billion, $37 billion, $39.5 billion, and E dItor'S notE 8 SMT Magazine • February 2016

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