Established in 1990 in the Cochin Special Economic Zone, SFO has its design, software development and manufacturing facilities located at strategic locations across India to tap the best possible resources. SFO offers new product development and manufacturing services to customers in market verticals such as healthcare, communication, transportation, automotive, aerospace and defence. The products are mainly exported to the USA, Europe, Japan, Canada and China.
By Belal Khan
SFO Technologies is the flagship company of the US$ 300 million NeST Group of companies, which has more than 4000 employees. Focused on expansion and growth, the NeST Group is a highly diversified business conglomerate and is also one of the largest exporters and EMS providers in India. It operates in the healthcare, telecom, industrial, energy and transportation sectors, and aims to offer one-stop solutions in design, engineering, software development and EMS. The NeST Group has a strong presence in futuristic computer and communication technology areas like networking, fibre optics, RF, microwave and software.
SFO Technologies offers the ODM partnership model of ‘from concept to product’. Its end-to-end solutions cover design and engineering, software development, manufacturing of electronics and fibre optics products, and EMS including PCB assemblies, high-level assemblies, cable and wire harnesses, sheet metal fabrication, plastic moulding, transformers, inductors and box build.
Manufacturing at a glance
SFO Technologies’ electronics manufacturing facility, which is geared to produce the finest range of digital products, is equipped with the latest and the most sophisticated manufacturing and test equipment. This facility meets all the quality standards specified by the healthcare, communication, industrial and aerospace industries. Highly skilled engineers manage all the production and quality departments.
At SFO, the manufacturing capabilities include:
- Multiple surface mount, through-hole and chip-on-board lines
- High level assembly, mechanical integration and total box build
- Separate RoHS and non-RoHS lines
- IPC Class 3 soldering
- Conformal coating
- No clean, water wash capability
- AOI, ICT, FCT and X-ray inspection
- Flying probe testing
- Environmental cycling chambers
- RF and wireless assembly
A focus on quality
Quality is a way of life at SFO. That’s why it has obtained the most valuable certifications such as ISO 9001, ISO 14000, ISO 13485, TL 9000, AS 9100 and SEI CMMI Level 5 recognition. The firm constantly strives to improve its performance by adopting Six Sigma and lean methodologies.
Because of international exposure and very high quality standards, SFO has been very successful in enlisting many world leading firms as its customers. Today, the firm is one of the largest exporters of electronics and fibre optic products in the India, which cater to the needs of global giants based in the most advanced countries.
SFO’s continued thrust will be to grow as an ODM company by offering design, software development and manufacturing services as a total solution under one roof, and to reach a gross revenue of US$ 1 billion in the next five years. The company’s hardware and software facilities, which comply with global standards, are spread across Thiruvananthapurum, Cochin, Bengaluru and Mysore in India, and in the USA.
All the quality testing is done specific to the product. The company uses automatic X-ray equipment, in-circuit testers, flying probes, spectrum analysers, network analysers, noise figure meters, temperature cycling equipment, oscilloscopes, etc.
SFO has the entire range of T&M equipment for RF testing up to 10GHz, which is manned by skilled technicians who have been given special training in this area. The company has a dedicated facility for RF, wireless and microwave components, sub-systems and HLA, which is equipped with extensive test and measurement devices such as spectrum/network analysers, RF signal generators, sweep oscillators, etc. The facility has the capability to build rigid, flex and ceramic substrate assemblies, as well as thick film hybrid microcircuit assemblies, and also provide die-bonding and wire bonding.
“Because of international exposure and very high quality standards, SFO has been very successful in enlisting many companies that are world leaders as its customers. Today, SFO is one of the largest exporters of electronic and fibre optic products in the country, catering to the needs of global giants based in the most advanced countries.”
Services offered by the company
The company offers services in the field of design and engineering, software development, manufacturing of electronics and fibre optics products, power supplies, EMS for PCB assemblies, RF and wireless assemblies, high-level assemblies, cable and wire harnesses, sheet metal fabrication, plastic moulding, transformers and inductors.
|Year of establishment:||1990|
|Major products and services:||Electronics and fibre optics products, power supplies, EMS including PCB assemblies, RF and wireless assemblies, high-level assemblies, cable and wire harnesses, sheet metal fabrication, plastic moulding, transformers, inductors and box builds|
|Production capacity:||SFO has the capacity to manufacture products worth over ₹ 15 billion a year|
|Factory locations:||Cochin and Bengaluru|
|Annual turnover:||₹13.97 billion (FY 2014-15)|
|Recent investments||₹3.91 billion|
|Market regions:||Ninety per cent of the products are exported to the United States, Europe, Japan and other Asia Pacific countries. Only 10 per cent of its products are delivered to the Indian market.|
|Contact details:|| Thomas John, CEO – business development; [email protected];
|Pick-and-place machines (Fuji, Siemens, Panasonic)||12 lines|
|Wave soldering machines||12 lines|
|Selective soldering machines||2|
|AOI (automatic optical inspection)||3|
|ICT (Agilent, Teradyne, Aeroflex)||6|
|Automatic X-ray equipment||1|
|Semi automatic X-ray equipment||1|
|Flying probe machine||1|
|Conformal quoting machines||4|
|RF testing equipment (network analysers, spectrum analysers, signal generators, noise figure meters, etc)|