Dutch radio frequency specialist Pink RF is expanding operations. In collaboration with the American RF repair company Odyssey, European RF and semiconductor customers will have a new option located in Nijmegen. Klaus Werner, Director of pinkRF, and Jim Plourde, CEO of Odyssey, have been interviewed by Bits&Chips.
The city of Nijmegen has a new high-tech repair shop. The new business, which started operations in March of this year, is a collaboration between the Netherlands’ Pink RF and its new American collaborator, a world leader in the repair and service of radio frequency (RF), direct current (DC) and microwave devices, Odyssey Technical Solutions. Together, the companies will look to work with European wafer fabs, big and small, offering repair and maintenance services for RF and microwave equipment in the Dutch and European high-tech industry.
The right fit
Headquartered in Round Rock, Texas, Odyssey has a long-standing reputation in the radio frequency and microwave repair domain. The company has been repairing RF equipment used in semiconductor production for the last twenty years, having successfully repaired more than 60,000 devices for its US and Asian customers. With this success, Odyssey has had a keen interest in better serving the European market.
For quite some time, the Texas-based company has been looking for a first cooperation partner in Europe. As the search for the right fit led them to the Netherlands, the decision was clear – Pink RF was its choice. “The new company creates a lot of synergies,” describes Klaus Werner, director and founder of Pink RF. “For Odyssey, we offer relevant expertise in the mindset of RF and semiconductor manufacturing. Odyssey, on the other hand, contributes its resources and an established business model within the domain. Furthermore, the collaboration will give Pink RF access to a large network of experts that can repair systems, including our own. This will allow us to really put our focus on our core strengths.”
Place to be
The duo has opened its doors on the Novio Tech Campus (NTC) in Nijmegen, adjacent to the current offices of Pink RF. “Not only were our offices already established here, but the availability of and proximity to RF and microwave expertise and suppliers like NXP, Ampleon, Macom and Minicircuits is fundamental to Pink RF’s success,” says Werner. “The reality is that Nijmegen is the place to be for RF and semiconductors. Being located amid semiconductor manufacturing heritage, we have unrivaled access to contacts, customers, vendors and experienced talent.”
According to Odyssey CEO Jim Plourde, the company was already performing repairs for European customers, but taking a foothold in Europe was badly needed. “Odyssey has been doing repairs for European customers for years, but logistically speaking, a location in Europe made sense as the company grew,” Plourde explains. “We’re essentially aligning our service locations with our global customers by establishing the new Nijmegen service center.”
“Oost NL informed us about the semiconductor sector in the region, helped settle administrative obligations and informed about the possibilities surrounding the Semicon fair in Munich. Then we were guided from start to finish by Kadans Science Partner and Novio Tech Campus in the campus location,” states Plourde. “This was the deciding factor for us to become part of the Nijmegen health and high-tech network.”
While the first few weeks were spent building out the new offices and setting up operational structures, the RF company is ready to hit the ground running. The shop has already received its first few orders for repair. Currently, operations consist of just three employees, however, the ambition is to grow to 15-25 workers, at the Nijmegen location, over the next three years. “As the newest state-of-the-art repair facility in Europe, we’re looking forward to ramping up our business,” highlights Werner. “We intend to forge further cooperation with companies close to semiconductor manufacturing businesses to enlarge our reach within Europe.”