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Good Mechanics Know How the Parts Work

Fri, 04/26/2013 - 5:19pm
David Mantey, Executive Editor, PD&D

In late January, FCI Electronics named Alessandro Perrotta as the company’s new CEO, effective February, 13 2013.In late January, FCI Electronics named Alessandro Perrotta as the company’s new CEO, effective February, 13 2013.

FCI Electronics is a $555-million dollar manufacturer of interconnects and cable assemblies for datacom, consumer, and industrial applications. Perrotta, who previously served as Executive Vice President Wafers, Cells & Modules at Renewable Energy, will be based out of Singapore.

He previously served as Corporate Vice President and Group General Manager of the Mobile Consumer Product Division with Amphenol Corporation.

Walid Sarkis, FCI Chairman, believes that Perrotta’s “deep knowledge of the electronic connector industry, as well as his extensive experience in Asia, will be important to accelerate the successful growth FCI has experienced as well as continue delivering innovation, service, and value to our customers."

I had a chance to speak with Perrotta about the FCI’s future in the latest installment to PD&D’s Fireside Chat series.

PD&D: How did you get your start in the industry?

Alessandro Perrotta: I joined Motorola, South Florida in 1994 and started the iDEN [Integrated Digital Enhancement Network] Division. This was my first exposure in the communications field. Thereafter, I joined Amphenol in 2000, where I truly got acquainted with the connector industry. I was heavily involved in the mobile consumer market, and spent about 12 years in this industry.

PD&D: What is your first plan of action as you take over as CEO? 

Perrotta: My aspiration is to make FCI one of the top three connector companies. We have the technology, the people, and the expertise to turn this into reality.

PD&D: As an engineer, is it sometimes difficult to operate on the administrative side since there are fewer opportunities to get your hands "dirty" in regards to new product development?

Perrotta: I am totally hands-on. You can never be a good mechanic unless you know all the parts to work an engine.

PD&D: Given your extensive background in the industry, what has been the most interesting project that has come across your desk?

Perrotta: Interestingly, it was a very low-profile card connector. We wanted to perfect the product design so we pushed the limits from all grounds, challenging the tolerance level, tooling through to the entire manufacturing process. The months that led up to the launch were extremely challenging, but it was a worthwhile experience — and the card connector was a raging success.

PD&D: How was it a “raging success”?

Perrotta: It was the first of its kind in the industry, which we developed directly in China. The product was highly sought after, and had since been used in many applications in the industry.

PD&D: What are your predictions for the electronic connector industry?

Perrotta: I foresee a continuous growth in this industry fueled by the ever-increasing rate of data consumption.

PD&D: What changes do you foresee in the next five years?

Perrotta: Higher speed requirements. I believe only a few suppliers can manage this challenge.

PD&D: From a state of the industry perspective, what keeps you up at night?

Perrotta: I am always thinking about how to outrun the competition, and how to stay abreast of the innovation curve.

For more information, visit http://portal.fciconnect.com/portal/page/portal/fciconnect/homepage.

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