Category Archives: Hot Wires

Mike Buetow’s thoughts on the industry

Wave of Innovation

Old friend Jeff Miller (some readers may remember him from his ACT and Wise days) took this photo of a 3D printed car this week while at IMTS in Chicago. Meanwhile, while at PCB West earlier this week, we saw the … Continue reading

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Hitachi’s SMT Exit

And then there were … 27? Hitachi’s board today announced plans to exit the SMT component placement business, selling off certain parts of the division and closing the rest. In a press release, the firm said it would transfer the … Continue reading

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Investigation at Fabrinet

Weirdness abounds at Fabrinet. Consider the following: On Aug. 1, CEO David Mitchell sells 40,000 shares of company stock in a transaction valued at $734,000. On Aug. 12, JDS Uniphase lowers its outlook, saying its current quarter sales will be as much as … Continue reading

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Cisco’s Job Cuts

Cisco yesterday announced it an 8% cut to its workforce. Although the company did not say when the layoffs would occur, the suggestion is that some 6,500 workers will find themselves without a job at some point in the future. Or will … Continue reading

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How Far Should Sustainability ‘Standardization’ Go?

My longtime friend and industry colleague Pam Gordon blogged today about the role trade associations should play in driving the industry toward sustainability practices. In it, she writes Associations will not necessarily push members to the next level of sustainability … Continue reading

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Robots and the Law

In the April issue of PCD&F/CIRCUITS ASSEMBLY, I wrote about the need for a balance between autonomous machinery and human-operation equipment. I wrote the piece in the aftermath of the Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappearance, and referenced, among other things, the … Continue reading

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Could Foxconn Deal Bite Apple?

The notion that Foxconn might take a large stake in a major Taiwanese telecom equipment company poses a litany of interesting questions for its largest customer — Apple. For example, Foxconn, which gets 40% of its revenue from Apple, could now be … Continue reading

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A ‘Worthington’ Idea

EMS firm Worthington Assembly last week announced a deal to market its EMS services via CircuitHub. WAI is a small EMS company located in Western Massachusetts. Like many in the sub-$20 million space, WAI’s owners double as its salesmen, and … Continue reading

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Quiet Flight

The mystery over the whereabouts of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 is a very serious and tragic matter. That the 777 was equipped with sophisticated tracking devices and could still disappear confounds me. Let’s assume the pilots turned off the transponder. … Continue reading

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M&A is Here to Stay

There’s been a flurry of EMS acquisition activity of late, with Natel’s acquisition of EPIC Technologies and Benchmark’s pickup of Suntron and CTS among the larger deals. Lincoln International, an M&A advisor, counts nine transactions in the fourth quarter alone, … Continue reading

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