India is a meaningful market for Indium

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Indium Corporation finds a “meaningful” market in India as it foresees its economy to grow significantly in the coming years. A principal materials supplier to the global electronics assembly, semiconductor fabrication and packaging, solar photovoltaic and thermal management markets, Indium was founded in 1934. This eminent solder developer proffers a gamut of products and services as well as varied technical support pertinent to advanced materials science. With factories in China, Singapore, UK and the US, this ISO 9001-registered company is also a four-time Frost & Sullivan Award winner. Ross Berntson, vice-president of Solder Products Business Unit, Indium Corporation, spoke to Atanu Kumar Das of Electronics Bazaar in an exclusive interview about the company’s India plans and how it intends to combat global recession

Ross Berntson, vice-president of Solder Products Business Unit, Indium Corporation

Friday, March 20, 2009: EB:How important is the Indian market for Indium Corporation?

There are many reasons why India is meaningful to the Indium Corporation. Firstly, the economy is expected to grow significantly in the coming years due to local economic expansion. Additionally, many of Indium’s strategic global partners have located to India. We have been supplying materials to customers materials in India for over 10 years and in 2007, we increased our commitment to the Indian market by recruiting full-time sales and technical support engineers. We expect the market will support local manufacturing of solder materials. Consequently, a manufacturing and distribution facility has been planned for the future.

EB:What are the challenges you have encountered in the Indian market?how do you intend to overcome them?

The biggest challenge continues to be infrastructure. Roads and transportation are the rgavest challenges, especially when handling perishable materials such as solder paste. Fresh materials, good packaging and a clear understanding of the supply path are key to reducing the impact of this issue on our customers.

EB: Considering the recent escalation local manufacturing of solder materials in electronic hardware manufacturing in India, what sort of growth are you anticipating over the next few years?

We expect that the global economic crisis will result in reduced consump­tion, slowing manufacturing in 2009. The large size and continually changing nature of the electronics manufacturing business provide many opportunities for a solder company. The ongoing lead-free conversion, the movement towards halogen-free materials and the mass implementation of 0.3 mm assemblies are creating some of the more recognis­able opportunities.  Although no one can exactly predict how the current economic turmoil will impact India, we feel that growth will continue, as demand in local markets for consumer electronics is strong.

EB: What are the latest technological developments that have taken place in your company?

Indium Corporation has recently brought numerous technological advances to the electronics market includ­ing halogen-free solder paste, wave flux, rework materials, package-on-package dipping material (both flux and paste), no-clean halogen-free ball-attach fluxes, liquid metal thermal interfaces and heat-spring thermal solutions.

Research and development is cen­tral to our fundamental organisational strength, which brings solutions to customer applications. These applica­tions are not static, requiring us to be highly aligned with their technical road maps to continuously identify opportu­nities to deliver cutting-edge advanced materials.

EB: Do you believe that global reces­sion will eventually encroach upon the Indian electronics and IT markets? Would that affect your growth in this region?

No region will escape the impact of this global recession. However, part of Indium Corporation’s strength is in its diversity. We offer electronics assembly materials, materials for the semiconduc­tor fabrication and packaging, solar photovoltaic and thermal management markets.

EB: How far has the soldering market progressed globally and how is it do­ing in India currently?

The solder market grows roughly with the entire global electronics market. However, specialty materials and advanced applications can far out pace the general market. At this time, India’s level of technology is mixed with some advanced aerospace and telecoms applications, combined with some consumer-type work. If India moves towards more advanced applications or if it takes production share from other low-cost regions, its growth could be exceptional.

EB:What are the value-added services you provide to your customers?

Indium Corporation’s goal is to increase its customers’ productivity and profitability through premium de­signs, applications and services using advanced materials. We provide our customers with onsite technical support, custom logis­tics support, specialty support materials and access to our research, develop­ment and simulation centres and staff. Furthermore, Indium Corporation’s in­teractive and technical knowledge base provides online support 24/7.

Electronics Bazaar, South Asia’s No. 1 electronics B2B sourcing magazine

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