© Electronics Production | October 03, 2013

Europe has Saki's full attention

Twenty years ago, an Automated Optical Inspection (AOI) manufacturer – in fact one of the very first – entered the Japanese market, Saki Corporation.
But let's start at the beginning. The company formed in 1994 and already two years later it rolled out its first brand product. In 1997 the company started selling overseas, marking – in fact – a major shift in strategy.

Four years after the company started selling outside of Japan – in 2001 – it opened its US office. And after that, the expansion continued at a rather rapid pace: offices and operations were established in different countries almost every year until 2009.

The last office to be opened was the German office. With all major players present in the region, a strategical decision and location for Saki.

So what role does Europe play in Saki's strategy?

“We believe many of the new technologies & production methodologies start in Europe. Therefore, we want to integrate this trend setting into our road map for future pilot-line machines and mass production solutions,” said General Manager Eddie Ichiyama. “In addition, together with our strategically located sale/support teams around the world, European customers can experience and enjoy our continuous,fast, and stable support with full confidence.”

To be at the heart of things – as Europe is seen as a unit rather than as individual countries - gives the company an understanding of the customer's next generation plans.

As Mr. Ichiyama puts it, “there is no geographical location within Europe taking precedence over another. Saki targets them all”. And with the production shift to Eastern Europe, Saki is trying to stay one step ahead – not only paying attention to said “shift”, but also towards the "Asian Wave" which is closing the gap with Europe.

“As we had started our journey in Japan almost 20 years ago, we know what's happening in Far East very well. Our role is to provide our European customers with a total solution which can withstand the pressure of the 'Asian Wave'.”

Saki sees this as its first and strongest argument – the knowledge to face this growing competition.

A fluctuating economic situation can slow down most entrepreneurial spirits. However, Saki has a rather refreshing outlook on economic instability.

“Although the over all economic situation may seem unstable, we do see some sectors of the market, such as Automotive, Aerospace and Alternative Energy showing strong growth”, said Mr. Eddie Ichiyama. “In addition, unstable economy always provides a perfect opportunity for change & challenge.”

In other words: Saki sees the current – challenging – economy as an opportunity and not as a burden.
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