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October 2017 • SMT Magazine 41 es what some say is the most serious threat to the industry that there has ever been. Look also into your own life—the flights you take, the car journeys you embark on, the medical devices you depend on in times of need, the control- lers of the nuclear power plant that is supply- ing your electricity, and all the other electronic aids that are now an integrated part of your life. To what degree of tolerance are you willing to accept the risk and consequences of counterfeit materials? SMT Michael Ford is the European marketing director for Aegis Software. COUNTERFEIT: A QUALITY CONUNDRUM The materials are already uniquely labeled. The infrastructure is in place to manage any devia- tions or defects in material performance. There are now two active tools against coun- terfeit materials in manufacturing, made possi- ble in a way that brings business benefits ev- ery day, plus, has the potential value of being able to avoid catastrophic quality events due to counterfeit materials, quickly and quietly managing any minimal consequences that may have occurred. This is the smart way to move forward. It is time to become aware of the latest modern smart software for manufacturing out there. The default options of enterprise resource planning (ERP), and perhaps a simple manufac- turing execution system (MES), will not provide the specialist tools needed in this new world that we made for ourselves. Look around now for your smart logistics solution that address- What's Up in Scandinavia's EMS Industry? By Dieter G. Weiss, Weiss Engineering Scandinavia, consisting of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Finland is relatively small in regard to the overall European EMS revenues, and counts for less than 6% of the total European EMS pro- duction value. Nevertheless, more than 160 com- panies offer EMS services in Scandinavia, not counting companies who only manufacture ca- ble harnesses or just do design work, box building, and after-sales ser vices. Even so, there are some larger companies with several different manufac- turing locations. By far, the biggest EMS hub in Scandin via is Swe- den, with nearly 50% of all EMS companies. Finland and Denmark are nearly equal regarding the number of companies, and Norway has about half of the number of EMS providers compared to Denmark. If one looks at the revenues, Finland is double that of Denmark; while Norway's EMS revenues are more than 30% than that of Denmark. Talking about growth rates, it be- comes tricky. Many people convert all numbers into U.S. dollars. Where- as, this might be a way to compare the countries on a global scale, it does not necessarily reflect what the situation in the individual country is. The US dollar is not the center of the world and neither is the euro. In Scandinavia, only Finland has converted its currency 17 years ago to euro. All other Scandinavian countries still have their individual currencies such as the Norsk krone, the Svenska krona and the Dansk krone. The Dansk kro- ne has been stable to the euro over the last three years, but the Svenska krona changed nearly 9.5% to the euro from 2013 to 2016, and the Norsk krone even 19% at the same time. Therefore, it is not a wonder that EMS manufac- turers in Norway had a decline in revenues of more than 4% calculated in euro in 2016 compared to 2015, but in Norsk krone, it was just minus 0.5%. In Sweden, a decline of more than 2% in euro even turned into a plus of 0.5% when looked at in lo- cal currency. The same is valid for Great Britain and Switzerland, where negative growth in euro convert- ed to a positive change in local currency. The worrying point of the Scandinavian EMS in- dustry is that in Norway, 50% of all companies re- ported losses in 2015 as well as in 2016, and the average profit after tax fell to a low of 0.3% of revenues. In Sweden, Finland and Denmark, 25% of all companies reported loss- es. At least in Sweden, profitability was better and even improved com- pared to 2015.

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