ATS INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS WITH INFINITYQS FOR GLOBAL CUSTOMER BASE Fairfax, VA—Infinity QS International Inc. announced it has established a strategic partnership that will enable ATS International B.V. to offer ProFicient, Infinity QS’ enterprise quality hub, to a global customer base. ATS provides industrial and process automation, quality, and information technology solutions with 30 offices in 17 countries. Infinity QS will continue to strengthen its global reach to Europe and the Asia Pacific, and industries such as aerospace and automotive manufacturing. This partnership will also present new business. Global customers who purchase ProFicient from ATS have the convenience of turning to one point of contact at every step before, during and after the implementation. Martyn Gill, business development director, ATS International B.V., says, “No matter what our customers are manufacturing – whether food, automobiles or airplanes – there is a need to manage quality, consistency and compliance using InfinityQS ProFicient. The quality software’s advanced integration capabilities allow our customers to identify new ways to acquire and analyze data, and uncover Manufacturing Intelligence to better facilitate continuous improvement.” ProFicient is a proven enterprise quality hub powered by a centralized statistical process control (SPC) analysis engine. With flexible cloud-based or on-premise deployment options, ProFicient enables manufacturers to proactively monitor, analyze and report on Manufacturing Intelligence to improve quality, decrease costs and make more strategic business decisions. Michael Hines, OEM and channel sales manager, Infinity QS, says, “Partnering with ATS International is a great fit for Infinity QS. The company is highly knowledgeable on SPC and quality, and has coverage in areas of the globe where InfinityQS seeks to expand. We are looking forward to bringing new, international clients onboard, and seeing the results that they achieve through our combined solutions.” WENZEL’S AMERICAN GRAND OPENING Wixom, MI—Wenzel America Ltd. Recently held the grand opening of their new facility in Wixom, MI. Despite the poor weather conditions, the ribbon was cut for the unveiling of the new location by Dr. Heike Wenzel-Däfler, joint CEO of the Wenzel Group, and the Mayor of the City of Wixom, Kevin Hinkley. The event was attended by a prestigious crowd of local customers, Wenzel partners, and representatives of the trade press. Following the opening ceremony Andy Woodward, president of Wenzel America Ltd. Led the visitors through the new facility on a guided tour of the demonstration room exhibits and the assembly and manufacturing shops. Later, Woodward commented “It was proud day for us, to finally get into a new home that not only has a great demo room that really does justice to the full range Wenzel products, but also a factory layout that really suits our assembly and remanufacturing needs.” Wenzel is known as innovators in coordinate measuring machinery and metrology equipment, and Wenzel America Ltd. Is prepared to excel in the field. This new location in Wixom features a stunning showroom that showcases the full range of Wenzel products. The layout is consolidated to demonstrate to clients and visitors of the facility the full extent of their product line. A tour of the new facility is available by visiting the Contact Us page of the Wenzel America website. This virtual tour takes you from the outside of the building, through the demo room, into the temperature controlled assembly area, the offices, the spare parts stores and the warehouse. ELFA’S SURVEY OF ECONOMIC ACTIVITY: MONTHLY LEASING AND FINANCE INDEX Washington, DC—The Equipment Leasing and Finance Association’s(ELFA) Monthly Leasing and Finance Index (MLFI-25), which reports economic activity from 25 companies representing a cross section of the $725 billion equipment finance sector, showed their overall new business volume for March was $6.8 billion, flat compared to volume in March 2012. Month over- month, new business volume was up 45 percent from February. Year to date, cumulative new business volume was up three percent compared to 2012. Receivables over 30 days were unchanged in March from the previous month at 2.0 percent. They were down from 2.8 percent in the same period in 2012. Charge-offs were down slightly, returning to the all-time low of 0.3 percent from 0.4 percent in February. Credit approvals totaled 78.4 percent in March, up 1 percent from February. Fifty percent of participating organizations reported submitting more transactions for approval during March, down from 53 percent the previous month. Finally, total headcount for equipment finance companies was relatively unchanged from the previous month, and decreased 2 percent year over year. Separately, the Equipment Leasing & Finance Foundation’s Monthly Confidence Index (MCI-EFI) for April is 54.0, a decrease from the March index of 58.0, reflecting industry participants’ continuing concerns over the economy and the impact of federal policies on capital expenditures. ELFA President and CEO William G. Sutton, CAE, said: “After a sluggish February, March business activity returned to a degree of normalcy that hopefully is sustainable into the second half of the year. The continued low interest rate environment promoted by the Fed together with relatively benign fundamentals in the broader economy bode well for businesses planning to expand and grow in the com Russell Nelson, President, Co Bank Farm Credit Leasing, said: “Given the continuation of the low interest rate environment, favorable credit quality trends, industry discipline for sustainable growth with acceptable risk-adjusted returns, and customer demand for financing primarily replacement assets, the pace of activity in the first quarter has been steady, but less robust than the fourth quarter of 2012. Influencing factors weighing on future capex, both replacement and expansion, are continued uncertainty and volatility in the current domestic/global economies, pending tax, accounting, and regulatory changes, and political uncertainty in Washington. KEYNOTES AND CONFERENCE FOR RAPID 2013 ANNOUNCED DEAR BORN, MI—Keynote presentations and conference tracks at the 2013 RAPID Conference and Exposition will explore existing and future applications of additive manufacturing, 3D printing and 3D imaging and their potential to transform manufacturing, according to the Society of Manufacturing Engineers SME). RAPID will be held June 10-13, 2013, at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, Penn. “We’re bringing together many of the leading users of additive manufacturing to share their experiences and vision of the future,” said SME Business Development Manager Gary Mikola. “Our goal is to give attendees practical applications to improve their manufacturing operations, as well as a glimpse of what’s next for this exciting technology.” Additive manufacturing (AM), often referred to as 3D printing, is a new way of making products and components from digital models and will have implications across a wide range of manufacturing industries. Located just 40 minutes from the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute (NAMII), RAPID will include cutting edge AM and 3D imaging technologies and the institute’s ongoing effort to help revitalize the American manufacturing sector. SME is heavily involved in technology transition and dissemination, and the education and training of practitioners through the institute. INVESTORS INCREASE INDUSTRIAL MANUFACTURING M&A IN Q1 NEW YORK – Financial investors in the industrial manufacturing sector stepped off the sidelines in the first quarter of 2013, recording a substantial increase in merger and acquisition (M&A) activity. While strategic investors continued to drive deal activity during the first quarter, financial investments were well ahead of the pace for the same period in 2012 and accounted for 39 percent of total transactions compared to just eight percent in the fourth quarter last year, according PwC US. Overall M&A activity slowed in the first quarter of 2013 as announced volume and value were the slowest of any quarter over the past three years. The first quarter recorded 28 transactions worth $50 million or more for a total deal value of $9.3 billion, down 30 percent from the previous quarter, which generated 40 transactions totaling $12.7 billion. The industrial manufacturing sector also witnessed a significant decline in both volume and value from the first quarter of 2012 with 42 deals worth $17.2 billion. “Given the decline in overall transaction activity during the first quarter, deal valuations dropped below longer term historical norms, as acquirers focused less on cross-border deals and more on consolidating their local markets, reflecting a more guarded approach to M&A,” said Bobby Bono, U. S. industrial manufacturing leader for PwC. “We remain cautiously optimistic about deal activity for the remainder of the year given the potential for companies to gradually shift from a primary focus on cost-cutting and organic expansion initiatives toward more acquisitive growth strategies given the continued global recovery.” According to PwC, the industrial manufacturing sector recorded two mega deals (transactions worth $1 billion or more) in the first quarter, totaling $5.2 billion. Mega deal activity accounted for 55 percent of total deal value, however, the majority of deals in the first quarter fell into the middle market category (transactions worth $50 million to $250 million). “This trend may continue through the remainder of the year if manufacturing executives continue to focus on strengthening supply chains and core operations while divesting non-core or under performing assets,” said Bono. The long-time subsector leader in M&A, industrial machinery led deal activity in the first quarter, recording 46 percent of total deals as European financial acquirers bought local industrial machinery and rubber and plastic product companies through leveraged buyouts. Smaller, more fragmented segments also completed deals in the first quarter including fabricated metals and electronic and electrical equipment, representing 1a8 and 14 percent of activity respectively. For more information on PwC’s Deals practice, visit www.pwc.com/us/deals. ASSOCIATION NEWS SAN DIEGO, CA—The Coordinate Metrology Society (CMS) launched the industry’s first Level- One Certification for Portable 3D Metrology. The first examinations will be held at the 29th annual Coordinate Metrology Systems Conference (CMSC), July 22 – 26, 2013, at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina. Applicants for the Level-One Certification must submit an application, meet eligibility requirements, sign the CMS code of ethics, and pass a peer review. Qualifying candidates will be notified and scheduled for an examination seat at CMSC 2013. The cost for a CMS member to take the Certification exam is $400, non-member pricing is also available.Certification program guidelines and application forms are available on the CMS website at https://www.cmsc.org/cms-certification. The CMS Certification credential aids in quantifying an employee’s knowledge of metrology, which is essential to ISO certified manufacturers and companies with Quality Management Systems. The Certification exam is currently comprised of two assessments. The Level-One examination is a proctored, online assessment consisting of about 200 multiple choice questions covering foundational theory and practice common to most portable 3D Metrology devices. The Level-Two exam on a portable CMM (coordinate measuring machine) is being piloted at the 2013 CMSC. This is a practical performance assessment. The candidate must use a metrology instrument to collect a series of measurements on an artifact, then analyze specific features of that artifact. Data collection technologies that were once the domain of scientists, engineers and mathematicians, are now being used by technicians and shop-floor personnel for industrial applications and beyond. The measurement equipment is calibrated and certified to performance standards, but the personnel operating this equipment are not accredited. There are many variables induced by an operator that can dramatically influence data collection. It is important for an employer to understand the knowledge level of an employee or a metrology service provider in this industry.” BUSINESS NEWS MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA—The increasing awareness of the need to accurately measure critical components by consumers has been the biggest driver for the dimensional metrology market. There is significant use of metrology in the automotive, aerospace and defense industries. Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC) is intensifying its focus on these industries, thus creating a positive outlook for the market. Analysis of the Dimensional Metrology in Emerging Economies, finds that the market earned revenue of $203.9 million in 2011 and estimates this to reach $275.6 million in 2016. The study covers the market segments of coordinate measuring machines (CMM) and the optical digitizer and scanner (ODS). Market participants are expanding their sales and marketing presence in the BRIC countries to make the most of the nations’ strong market revenue potential. Their direct presence in these emerging countries will fuel competition and therefore, growth. Successful metrology vendors in BRIC have understood the importance of client interaction and customer-centric product development. In the future, all equipment vendors are likely to work toward expanding their direct presence in this area. “Further, initiatives to educate customers on technology and new application markets will increase awareness and generate revenue for dimensional metrology equipment vendors,” said Frost & Sullivan Test & Measurement Research Analyst Aravind Govindan. Low-cost CMMs have broken entry barriers in BRIC countries. In traditionally conservative industries, such as heavy machinery, customers are hesitant to adopt new technologies such as ODS. However, leading market participants’ efforts to manufacture low-cost CMMs is expected to boost their revenue potential. Meanwhile, in the ODS market, vendors customize the prices of their solutions to the region’s needs and price sensitivity. Although there is demand for high-end solutions, the low- and midrange segment accounts for the majority of sales in BRIC countries. As technology improves, the cost of these solutions is expected to decline. Despite the prevailing economic uncertainty, market participants are optimistic about their prospects. Recently, growing pressure from European and American automotive manufacturers for quality output and standardized manufacturing processes across the value chain has raised the demand for CMMs. “Due to the slow economic recovery in the U.S. and Europe, BRIC’s exports to developed countries dropped significantly, resulting in inadequate capital expansion and budget approvals for upgrading plant facilities among end users,” noted Govindan. “However, the gradual recovery of the automotive industry in developed countries is expected to bring more investments to automotive plants located in the BRIC countries, thus stimulating the dimensional metrology market.” For more, visit http://www.testandmeasurement.frost.com. SAN RAMON, CA—Giga-tronics sales its SCPM product line to Teradyne, Inc. for $1,000,000. The Company received 80% or $800,000 in proceeds at the closing; an additional 5% of the purchase price will be paid upon completion of training the Company has agreed to provide to Teradyne; and the balance of 15% of the purchase price is subject to a hold back until the end of 2013 for contingent liabilities. Giga-tronics designs, manufactures, and markets various test and measurement equipment used in the development, test, and maintenance of wireless communications products and systems, flight navigational equipment, electronic defense systems, and automatic testing systems worldwide. Its products are primarily used in the design, production, repair, and maintenance of commercial telecommunications, radar, and electronic warfare equipment. A direct presence in Brazil, Russia, India and China is vital for overall market visibility and growth. MILWAUKEE, WI— ASQ is a public-private partnership developing test beds and training for next generation manufacturing technology platforms. The SMLC was launched in July 2012 to drive improved manufacturing efficiencies, reduce waste and integrate manufacturing intelligence in real time across an entire production operation. “The Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition has its goals rooted in quality, which is helping companies perform more efficiently with higher quality outcomes,” said ASQ CEO Paul Borawski. “We are excited for the opportunity to share our resources with the SMLC, accentuating quality through the development and growth of the organization.” “ASQ’s extensive knowledge in helping organizations increase efficiencies will be an asset to the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition as we continue to improve manufacturing productivity,” said SMLC Chairman Dr. Dean Bartles. “We are pleased to have ASQ as part of the SMLC, as both organizations share the passion for improvement.” In 2012, ASQ announced its partnership with the Manufacturing Institute’s Skills Certification System. ASQ offers its 17 certifications, training and knowledge resources to directly address the deficits in manufacturing education and training. PEOPLE LOS ANGELES—Bohdan Oppenheim, a professor of systems engineering at Loyola Marymount University, has won the Shingo Research and Professional Publication Award for the second time. The Shingo Prize is the most prestigious award in the field of lean engineering. This second Shingo Prize for Oppenheim, who won it along with 13 co-authors, is for the book “The Guide to Lean Enablers for Managing Engineering Programs” that integrates the domains of program management, systems engineering and lean thinking. Lean seeks to maximize value while reducing waste through intelligent, systematic and comprehensive optimization of resources. Oppenheim won it the first time, along with two co-authors, for their publication “Lean Enablers for Systems Engineering,” which was published in the Journal for Systems Engineering (2009). The prize is given by the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University. The authors will receive the award at the 25th Annual Shingo Prize International Conference held in Provo, Utah, the week of May 6-10, 2013. “Receipt of the Shingo Research and Professional Publication Award signifies authors’ significant contribution to the body of knowledge surrounding operational excellence,” said Robert Miller, executive director of The Shingo Prize. “The intent is to motivate others to learn from them.” “The Guide to Lean Enablers for Managing Engineering Programs” is based on the findings of a one-year project executed by experts from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Project Management Institute and the International Council on Systems Engineering during 2011 and 2012. The guide identifies 43 “lean enablers” with 326 sub-enablers or best practices that organizations can utilize to increase efficiency and eliminate wasteful activities. Organizations that have implemented even a few enablers reported improvements in cost, schedule, quality and stakeholder satisfaction. The book was edited by Dr. Josef Oehmen of MIT, and Oppenheim contributed about half of the material. The Shingo Prize for Operational Excellence is named after Japanese industrial engineer Shigeo Shingo, who distinguished himself as one of the leading thinkers in the world in developing concepts, management systems and improvement techniques that have become known as the Toyota Business System.
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