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JANUARY 2018 I DESIGN007 MAGAZINE 81 their cellphones: "Oh my gosh. Who knew all this stuff had to happen to make one?" Balonek: Exactly. I had no idea before I joined IPC. Shaughnessy: Where were you before you came to IPC, Alicia? Balonek: I worked at a financial association in the banking industry, which was cool, though, because that was in the '90s, so you saw a lot of changes in banking with the ATM machines coming out, retail banking, gas stations and gro - cery stores. It was an exciting time there. It was right ar ound the dotcom era too. Shaughnessy: That was the good time. Goldman: Not as exciting as circuit boards, though, right? Balonek: You know what? The longer I'm at IPC, the more exciting it gets. I finally get it. It took me a long time to grasp this industry. It's exciting to see how engaged our members are too. That's what I like most about working at IPC. Shaughnessy: Everybody you talk to in the industry will tell you about their job. They'll tell you how they love it, how they got into it. Every- body has some crazy path that led them to this industry . Balonek: It's funny. Engineers are typically intro- verts until you start asking them about their work in this industry. Goldman: Alicia, what else should our readers know about this year's show? Balonek: I'd like to just share a few facts with you. Just the sheer buying power of our attend- ees that come to the show—many of them wait until the y visit IPC APEX EXPO before they make their purchasing decisions for the year. In fact, through our attendee surveys, we know that 37% of our attendees indicate that they will be mak - ing a purchase within six months of the show. Then about 28% of our attendees actually mak e the final buying decisions for their companies, and 55% recommend or influence those buy - ing decisions. We have the key decision-makers coming to this event. IPC APEX EXPO 2018 PRE-SHOW SPECIAL COVERAGE

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