Queen's Awards recognises electronics companies - Embedded.com

Queen’s Awards recognises electronics companies

LONDON — Several electronics companies are amongst the 137 winners in this years Queen's Awards for Enterprise. The 40th year of the awards sees the highest total for 10 years.

Included in companies from the electronics sector are Arcotronics, a supplier of electronic components; Datapath, a developer of computer graphic boards, displays and accessories; Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe, a supplier of broadband access equipment; GigaSat , a designer, manufacturer and integrator of satellite communications products and systems; Heber, a designer of electronic control systems for amusement and gaming machines; IMS Research, a supplier of market research services to the global electronics industry; Trackwise, a manufacturer of high frequency printed circuit boards; the Yes Group, a supplier of bespoke marine electronic solutions; and Selenia Communications, a developer of a personal role radio for use by frontline troops.

Arcotronics is a Northamptonshire-based manufacturer of electronic components, which has received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category, recognising its achievement in growing its export activities by almost 70% over a two-year period from 2002, in difficult market conditions.

Part of the Arcotronics Nissei Group of companies, Arcotronics manufactures capacitors and filters and has ambitions to become Europe’s second-largest supplier of (EMC) filters and to enter the US military equipment market over the coming year.

Arcotronics’ managing director, Adrian Flynn (shown in the picture below with Stacey Whitehead, Ann Pilsbury & Denise Whan), said, “Our blue chip client-base, and our sales performance in recent years, demonstrates that our business strategy is sound and that our products and service can be compared to the best in the industry. Now, we look forward to building on our success by pursuing ambitious, but realistic, targets for the medium and long term.”

Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe receives its Queen's Award for the Fujitsu GeoStream Access Gateway technology which is deployed in telephone exchanges to deliver broadband services. Designed, developed and manufactured by Fujitsu in the UK, the GeoStream Access Gateway technology is scalable design which provides broadband to large metropolitan areas, as well as remote, rural communities, with the technology capable of simultaneous multiple broadband service delivery, ranging from fast Internet access to voice telephony and video-on-demand.

Shigeyuki Unagami, managing director of Fujitsu Telecommunications Europe, said, “The achievement is notable both for the product's innovative design concept and its market performance. The Queen's Award for Enterprise -Innovation – acknowledges the benefits that the speed of broadband rollout in the UK is bringing to millions of homes and businesses, and also underlines the trade and employment advantages that our company brings to the West Midlands region, where our headquarters is based.

Derby-based Datapath was set up in 1982 and develops computer graphics and display technology with in-house expertise in both hardware and software (driver) design and development. PCB specialist Trackwise has won a Queen's Award for Enterprise: International Trade for increasing exports of its boards from £500Kto over £2M in just three years, including substantial recent ordersto China.

Electronics market research company, IMS Research, has seen exports grow 74% over the last three years and they now account for nearly 80% of all revenues. The company sells to around 40 countries worldwide across Europe, Middle East, Asia Pacific and the Americas. Matthew Towers, managing director of IMS Research in the UK, said, “Our growth in the last few years has come despite a very tough climate in the global electronics industry and tough competition from some very entrenched US-based suppliers.”

In the last five years IMS Research has focused on expanding its operations overseas to become a global player in the market intelligence field. This has involved setting up and expanding a US subsidiary in Austin, Texas, developing a direct presence in the rapidly expanding Chinese market, and establishing an agent network in Asia. Further substantial export sales growth is anticipated over the next few years.

Trackwise, formed in 1989 and based in Tewkesbury, specialises in the manufacture of antennas using printed circuit technology – including very large (up to 2.8m) boards used as the radiating element in cellphone base station antennas. It has gained an International Trade award for increasing exports of its boards from £500K to over £2million in three years, including substantial recent orders to China.

Philip Johnston, managing director at Trackwise, said, “This is the fruit of several years’ investment in equipment and personnel. We have designed and equipped our factory specifically for the manufacture of microwave boards, which allows us to remain competitive by keeping quality high and cost down.

Bedfordshire-based GigaSat produces a range of drive-away, flyaway and fixed satellite antennas in sizes from 1m right up to 4.5m diameter using ultra lightweight composites for not only the reflectors, but also the main supporting structures. This technology provides a significant weight/strength advantage over conventional construction and particularly in the flyaway antenna market where these factors are so important it has allowed GigaSat to very quickly become a dominant player.

GigaSat also manufactures a range of electronics hardware to build the complete earth station and offers a full system design and integration service.

Chris Lay, managing director, said, “We have been helped by the introduction of the airline baggage handlers weight limit of 32kg per case and global awareness of health and safety recommendations which suggest 2 people required to lift weights over 25kgs. When a typical 6RU shock mounted aluminium flight case weighs more than 20kg empty, whilst the GigaSat 6RU shock mounted carbon fibre flight case weighs 11kg empty, the choice is a no brainer.”

The privately company was set up in 2001 and has 35 employees in the UK, plus satellite offices in USA and Australia and current turnover is approximately £7.5 million.

In total, 88 Awards were announced for achievements in International Trade, 41 for Innovation and 8 for Sustainable Development. Winners range in size from a small firm with only two employees to an international giant employing nearly 4,500. 47% of this year's winners employ less than 50 people, and 30% are from the service sector.

This anniversary year is also marked by the announcement of the first recipients of The Queen's Award for Enterprise Promotion. These new Awards are for individuals who have played an outstanding and significant role in promoting the growth of enterprise and/or entrepreneurial skills and attitudes in others. Ten Standard Awards and a single Lifetime Achievement Award are announced today – with recipients honoured for work with schools, colleges, entrepreneurs and small businesses, especially in ethnic and deprived communities.

A full list of winners is available and the deadline for submissions for next year's awards is midnight on October 31.

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