Penn Elcom Acquires Forsight in Further Expansion of Asian Manufacturing Operation

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Specialist flightcase and speaker hardware manufacturer, Penn Elcom has acquired the majority shareholding in Chinese based 19 inch rack manufacturer Forsight.

In a move which is part of Penn Elcom’s planned medium term strategy for expansion in the region, Forsight will relocate to a newly constructed facility adjacent to Penn’s existing Asian operation in Guangdong Province, China.

The resulting 55% increase in floor space gives the combined operation a total of 17,000 square metres. The incorporation of the cutting edge CNC technology utilised in Forsight’s rack production will further enhance Penn’s existing high-end manufacturing capabilities.

First off, Forsight’s new production line will be a fresh range of high quality 19 inch rack cabinets for distribution throughout Asian and global markets via Penn’s existing global network of Depots and Distributors.

This will include an imperial model geared specifically to the USA, and an option of threaded rack rails for the other world markets - eliminating the need for cage nuts - and simplifying the process of populating racks with equipment and panels.

Penn-Elcom Chair Roger Willems comments, “Forsight is already an established and well respected manufacturer with a reputation for fine engineering and robust product lines. In addition to this experience, they will bring their extensive CNC based knowledge and substantial hardware investment to the Penn Elcom equation”.

The 19 Inch rack market is expanding rapidly for Penn Elcom in Asia and the Pacific Rim, particularly in the AV, IT and surveillance market sectors.

The past five years has seen the company investing heavily to ensure that the appropriate infrastructure is in place to tap this potential, and to maintain its capability to deliver products made to the standards of excellence for which Penn is renowned.

There will be full continuity between Penn’s Chinese operation and their two manufacturing plants in the UK – in Hastings, East Sussex and Washington, Tyne & Wear.

Production capacity has also been simultaneously ramped up in Hastings.

Over a million pounds worth of investment in 2012 saw the floor space dedicated to rack manufacturing boosted to 9,000 square metres, with a complete tooling upgrade and the addition of the latest Trumpf machinery to the existing suites, making this the largest concentration of Trumpf technology in Europe.

Rack design, technical information and production planning schedules will be shared between Hastings and China, with a duplication of manufacturing processes, RoHS certification and other quality control procedures at both sites.

“This ensures not only a continuity of availability, but also maximises global logistics, allowing us to respond immediately to demand from any location worldwide,” explains Willems, adding that this is a “must” in today’s marketplace.

Photo shows Penn Elcom Chair Roger Willems and Mrs Qi, General Manager of Forsight

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