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For this edition of Newslyne I would like to focus on the broader issues that impact Micralyne and in turn the MEMS industry as a whole.
We just recently returned from two conferences that serve as useful barometers for the MEMS industry. One was COMS 2006, held in St. Petersburg, Florida and organized by MANCEF (Micro and Nanotechnology Commercialization Educational Foundation) while the second was METRIC 2006 in Pittsburgh, which is organized by the MEMS Industry Group. Both conferences focus on the commercialization of MEMS but attract somewhat different audiences. COMS includes both industrial and academic attendees while METRIC is an industry-only event.
Micralyne has attended both events for the past five years - COMS 2004 was held in Edmonton - and discussions at these conferences generally reflect the important issues facing the MEMS industry of the day. Some topics stay the same from year-to-year (the need for standards, better integration between MEMS and CMOS, etc.) while other ones emerge (new applications for MEMS, globalization of the MEMS supply chain, etc.).
We think the issues discussed at these conferences represent the general attitudes of the MEMS industry as a whole. We are pleased to report that for 2006 these sentiments are very positive and many attendee companies are experiencing significant revenue and profitability growth as compared to last year. We would agree with this as it reflects what is happening at Micralyne as well.
Looking to the future, more and more of the discussion was focused on long-term issues - which I think is a sign that short-term prospects are strong - and where will the industry go from here.
Bruce Alton, our VP Marketing and Business Development, spoke at both conferences and said that, in general, there was a lot more focus on the application of MEMS in specific market segments (solving existing problems) and less so on the technology side (looking for problems to solve). In turn, the discussion focused on the need to understand product application requirements, customer expectations, qualification procedures, time-to-market and other issues for all different market segments.
A second point that Bruce highlighted was the recognition that MEMS cannot be considered as a "product" in itself. End-users don't see themselves buying MEMS; instead, they buy products that meet their specific needs and solve their particular problems. Frankly, most don't care if what's inside is MEMS or an elastic band, it just has to work, be reliable, and available at a reasonable cost.
To buyers of specialized parts such as MEMS, these both seem to be obvious points but, until this year, these were not clearly recognized and articulated by MEMS suppliers. We too find this a challenge as Micralyne serves many different customers in many different market segments. We need to speak the language of our customers and while this is a challenge we know its critical to our long term success and to that of our customers.
COMS and METRIC are important forums for these issues and I encourage you to attend and actively participate in them and others. Our collective contributions will strengthen the industry as a whole both today and for the long-term.
In this edition of Newslyne, you'll learn more about the technical issues related to wafer-to-wafer bonding as well as upcoming events and recent happenings here at Micralyne.
As always, please send us your feedback and if you need more information on the services we offer, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit our website at www.micralyne.com.
- Chris Lumb, President & CEO, Micralyne -