Smith & Associates Opens New Houston Quality Laboratory and Operational Facilities

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Smith’s newest operational hub offers expanded services for customer support

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... [W]ith the opening of this new hub, we are all looking forward to a great future and the opportunity to serve our customers even better.

Smith & Associates, the largest independent distributor of electronic components, today announces the opening of its newest hub housing warehouse and operational facilities and a state-of-the-art quality testing laboratory. The new, 57,199-square-foot hub extends the capabilities and services that Smith offers global clients and allows room for growth. The facility is ISO 17025-accredited and incorporates even more advanced quality equipment and resources for customer support than Smith's previous facility.

"With this new hub, Smith has again positioned itself as the global leader among independent distributors," said Kirk Wehby, Chief Operating Officer for Smith & Associates, at last week's grand opening ceremony in Houston, Texas. "We have invested capital, great effort, time, and expert personnel in the launching of this premier facility."

"For Smith," Wehby continued, "the new hub represents a game-changer – not only for our customers, but also for the industry, by providing the latest and best operations capabilities available today."

The significant expansion of the Smith Houston operational hub underscores Smith's commitment to providing best-in-class services and inventory management to its customers. Smith, ranked 11th among the top global electronics distributors in 2014 by Global Purchasing, expanded its number of electronic component inspectors in the new hub, in addition to upgrading and increasing the sophisticated equipment used there.

"We've built this facility for our customers," stated Bob Ackerley, co-founder and owner of Smith & Associates. "After thirty years, it is so exciting to be part of a constantly growing business and to still have so many opportunities in front of us. I know I speak for the entire Smith company when I say that, with the opening of this new hub, we are all looking forward to a great future and the opportunity to serve our customers even better."

Ongoing upgrades that are part of the move into the new facility include additional solderability testing systems, the latest models for high-density microscopes, upgraded Keyence microscopes, additional component and Hard Disk Drive (HDD) shredding equipment, and other equipment items.

Art Figueroa, Smith’s Vice President of Global Operations, joined Bob Ackerley and Kirk Wehby in speaking at the ceremony.

"Thanks to the immense teamwork by Smith Operations and the undying support from Smith's owners and executive team, we are opening our doors tonight," he said. "Smith's new hub is a first-class facility that will ensure our ability to provide the next level of global services to our customers worldwide. The size and capabilities of this hub ensure that no request is too small or too big."

"The hub allows us to dedicate the industry's best equipment, ISO 9001 processes and procedures, and CCCI-102-certified inspectors to each customer," Art continued. "In this facility, under one large roof, Smith continues to ensure that the utmost in quality is maintained throughout the handling of customers' orders, and that their individual requirements are attended to."

In addition to the facility upgrades and expansions, the new hub also features approximately 8,000 square feet of office space that highlights sustainable features in environmentally-aware materials, energy efficiency, and programmable HVAC systems for the sensitive electronic equipment handled there.

Smith’s operational and quality teams are growing in concert with the laboratory facilities, with about 40 employees working in the new hub presently and with the space for as many as 60 quality experts and electronic component inspectors to handle increases in customer demands.

About Smith & Associates

Founded in Houston in 1984, Smith & Associates is a leader in the independent distribution of semiconductors and electronic components to electronics and high-tech manufacturers. Smith offers shortage sourcing for commodity and obsolete parts, innovative purchasing and inventory management solutions, redistribution of excess inventory, and component stocking for warranty and repair programs.

A privately-held company, Smith & Associates employs more than 350 people worldwide, with annual revenue in excess of US $586 million. Smith's regional hubs in Houston, Hong Kong, and Amsterdam are ISO certified. In addition, sales and purchasing offices are located in Austin, Silicon Valley, Guadalajara, New York, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Seoul, Singapore, Taipei, and Penang. For more information, see http://www.smithweb.com/ or, to reach a Smith representative 24 hours a day, please call: 1.800.HOUSTON or +1 713.430.3000.

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For more information, contact:
Mark Bollinger
Smith & Associates, V.P. of Marketing
+1 713.430.3000
mbollinger(at)nfsmith(dot)com

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