Manufacturing: Mexico’s Appeal Grows as Chinese Costs Soar

Labor costs in Mexico are still generally higher than in China but the total cost of manufacturing in the North American country has fallen recently below its Asian rival’s, spurring a rethink amongst OEMs about the best place to site production facilities. In the last few years, many U.S.-based manufacturing companies have either moved or…

Doing Business in Korea, Part 1

For many tech workers in the Americas, the Asia-Pacific region is just that—a region. Global electronics companies, of course, have figured out that each country within this vast region is unique. Within the distribution industry, independents such as Smith & Associates set up shop overseas more than a decade ago to expedite trade in electronics.…

Partnerships Aim to Drive IoT Designs

The growing connectivity in a variety of applications ranging from smart personal devices to automotive infotainment and navigation, driven by the Internet of Things (IoT), offers big potential opportunities for component vendors across a number of devices including microcontrollers, microprocessors, and sensors. IHS Technology expects the global market for connected, or Internet-enabled devices, to surpass 6…

Manufacturing Rebounds From Winter & Budget Woes

There are still plenty of reasons to be concerned about policies in Washington D.C., but budget fears seem to be abating among manufacturers. In its monthly report on the domestic manufacturing industry, the Institute for Supply Management found in two major sectors – computer and electronic products and transportation equipment – government spending is loosening…

Ruling Adds No Clarity To Conflict Minerals Law

One of the lesser-known facts about the Dodd-Frank Act (also known as the “conflict minerals” rule) is that the provision has been challenged in court. The U.S. Court of Appeals for D.C. Circuit recently issued its ruling on a challenge by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) regarding the SEC’s conflict minerals rule, according to…

What Makes Future Electronics Different?

Future Electronics Inc. isn’t an enigma. Not by a long shot. Many of the electronics components distributor’s suppliers and customers swear by it because it’s reputed for standing by them through the industry’s notorious boom and bust cycles and for offering design and engineering support critical to breaking into new markets and security design-wins. Others…

Getting to Know Future Electronics’ Robert Miller, Part Two

It’s not a stretch to say Future Electronics Inc. is at the core of Robert Miller’s life. Although he has numerous interests outside of the company, many of these intersect with the distributor’s activities and Miller unabashedly emphasizes that Future, which he founded nearly 50 years ago and built into one of the top 5…

How America II Juggles Spot-Market & Scheduled Orders

Now in its 25th year of business, America II has expanded globally and has consistently ranked as one of the top distributors in its market. It hasn’t always been easy – independent (or non- authorized) distributors have faced an uphill battle in establishing themselves as trustworthy sources of supply. America II’s President Brian Ellison spoke…

Microsemi Boosts Channel Strategy

Component makers that are expanding their market reach often find their internal resources can’t support every market or every customer that could benefit from their technology. The distribution channel evolved – in part – as an extension of their suppliers’ sales teams. But distributors are also finding they have to do more with less and…