January 26, 2023

VIEWPOINT 2023: Jonathan Wol, President, Pillarhouse USA Inc.

VIEWPOINT 2023: Jonathan Wol, President, Pillarhouse USA Inc.
Jonathan Wol, President, Pillarhouse USA Inc.
How was business in 2022 and what do you expect for the industry in 2023?
2022 was a record setting year for Pillarhouse USA, with business coming from many existing customers, and in particular the automotive/EV market. Our strategy of expanding support and increasing our local reach has paid dividends.

Our prosperity during this time is a testament to the resilience of the PCB manufacturing industry, and our ability to supply PCB manufacturers with our world-class selective soldering equipment and support during the pandemic.
We currently forecast an increase in global sales in 2023, provided external global geopolitical factors do not disrupt the current PCB demand.

Will you be launching new products or services in 2023?
Yes, we will! For example, we are launching our brand-new, patented, long-life solder nozzle, which combines the studies of materials science, tribology, and surface engineering to deliver a product with a greater lifetime and wettability to solder. Our Stacker Convection Heater will also launch in 2023, enabling the heating of up to 16 PCBs simultaneously and programmable speed to balance production line throughput. These new technologies reflect our company ethos of constant innovation.

Have supply chain shortages of semiconductors and electronic components caused problems for your company in 2022 and what have you done to reduce these issues in 2023?
The part shortages have impacted Pillarhouse much less than many of our customers. We have a strong engineering development team that has been able to provide alternate components as required.

Are you able to hire enough qualified employees? What could the industry do to develop a larger pool of skilled workers?
We have been able to find enough qualified workers to support our expansion, but the process has been arduous. The length of time to find the right individual is many times what it was pre-pandemic, so advanced planning becomes paramount.

It is difficult to answer what could be done in the short term to ease the hiring burden. A focus on STEM in schools and industry-based internship programs, equipment support for engineering programs to set up production labs and other materiel support would elevate the industry as an option for the next generation.

Has your company travel returned to pre-pandemic levels or are you still limiting travel to customer sites or industry conferences in 2023?
Our travel has returned to pre-pandemic levels. In 2022 we attended trade shows such as SMTAI and APEX, visited our customers on-site across North America, and reconnected in-person with our Pillarhouse International colleagues in the UK. The pandemic is no longer a roadblock for our biggest travelling requirements, for which we are of course grateful. We are eagerly looking forward to APEX 2023, where you can find Pillarhouse USA at Booth 923.

Jonathan Wol, President
Pillarhouse USA Inc.
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