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                                     April 2008

       80 years and
        still on top
      Rodd Ruland explains how FCI-Burndy
  Products has leveraged 80 years of experience
  to keep itself at the forefront of the electrical
         component & tooling industry

At the top of industry + fCi-Burndy produCts Goes to MArket
              80 years and
              still on top
 Rodd Ruland, FCI-Burndy Products’ Corporate Vice President
 and General Manager, tells Manufacturing Exec how, after all
       this time, the company is still leading the way

          Written by Emmet Cole and Produced by Rob Tuneberg

          The pace at which technol-     the best connectivity.
          ogy is advancing is growing        Founded in 1924 as Burndy, and
          ever more rapidly, and there   now a part of FCI, the Manchester,
 are numerous strategies and applica-    NH-based company has contributed
 tions that businesses must adopt to     over eight decades of superior product
 keep up with the seemingly endless      and working relationships throughout
 opportunities opened up by new          the industry, providing “electrical con-
 technologies.                           nectors and application tooling for the
    Remaining up-to-date or just ahead   electrical market,” says Rodd Ruland,
 of the advancement curve is where       FCI-Burndy Products’ Corporate Vice
 many companies seek to be – and the     President and General Manager.
 company they turn to is FCI-Burndy          The company’s customer base is
 Products, the Electrical Division of    wide, and ranges from the large-scale
 FCI, a company that provides both       utility providers to contractors and
 individual customers and large-scale    companies that do construction, main-
 businesses with the means to achieve    tenance, and repair.

APRIL 2008
                                                 y se St cty
                               F C I - B u r n d C aP r o d uu d s                      3

  FCI-burndy has a “system-sell” strategy

    “We are one of the only providers       sales force of factory-direct representa-
that designs, develops, and manufac-        tives versus agents and/or manufactur-
tures both electrical connectors and        ers reps, so we have a very strong
the installation tooling that goes with     presence in the marketplace,” explains
them,” Ruland says.                         Ruland.
    This allows FCI-Burndy Products             To make its presence more widely
to go to market with a “system-sell”        known in a colorful, attention-grabbing
strategy, guaranteeing the perform-         way, FCI-Burndy Products has devel-
ance of the product when used with          oped demonstration trucks “which
its accompanying installation tooling.      have our application tooling on them in
                                            the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.
At the top of industry                          “Being able to bring the workshop
Honing its reputation in the field, along   to the customer scores highly with
with developing a rapport with clients      potential and current clients these
and adjacent industries, FCI-Burndy         days, with schedules loaded and no
goes to market predominantly with “a        extra time in our workdays,” says
 Ruland.                                 built up over the past 80 years.
     This way, FCI-Burndy Products           Because of its flexibility, the com-
 can go to a construction site or a cli- pany can use different business mod-
 ent’s work site and provide hands-on    els in different countries. In the U.S.
 training and demonstrations - making    , for example, “a high concentration
 their products more viable and user-    of our sales go through the electrical
 friendly in the process and getting     distribution channel,” explains Ruland,
 immediate “voice-of-the-customer”       which is governed by the National
 input on product enhancements and       Association of Electrical Distributors.
 applications.                               The National Association of
                                         Electronic Distributors (NAED) has
 FCI-Burndy ProduCts Goes served as the electrical distribution
 to Market                               industry’s trade association since
 As part of the fourth largest connector 1908, and has developed compliance
 manufacturer in the world, FCI-Burndy standards for companies equipped
 Products has a reputation for quality   with and measurements to gauge

APRIL 2008
                                                y se St cty
                              F C I - B u r n d C aP r o d uu d s     5

varying degrees of success. The
NAED’s protection and service of
the electrical distribution channel has
                                            “A key area of focus
allowed companies like FCI-Burndy            is in the renewable
Products thoroughfares to establish
relationships and make their mark in         energy area… as utili-
the electrical distribution industry.
    For its clients in Canada, Mexico,
                                             ties invest more and
Latin and South America, the com-            more... we have the
pany employs a more hybrid business
model, according to Ruland. “A lot of        opportunity to lever-
the business is done on a direct basis,      age our portfolio”
where we sell our products directly
to a public utility, but we also sell       - Rodd Ruland
products to the electrical distributor in
those countries in support of contrac-

inline switch

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                                   tor, telecom, and petro-chemical busi-
                                   ness,” he says.
                                       This enables FCI-Burndy Products
 “Having 80 plus years             to have time with clients to assess any
                                   level of need for assistance in applica-
  of brand name                    tion or understanding the use of their
  recognition in the               products.
                                       One key area of growth for FCI-
  marketplace is a sig-            Burndy Products is in what Ruland
                                   calls the “re-electrification of the U.S.”
  nificant value and               Ruland believes that just as infrastruc-
  something that we                ture like highways and bridges need to
                                   be replaced and updated, the electrical
  leverage every day”              grid needs the same revitalizing touch.
                                       This can be explored through
                                   multiple means, says Ruland, but one
                                   area of particular focus for FCI-Burndy
                                   Products is in the renewable energy
                                   area, especially through wind and solar

 FCI-Burndy Is drIven to suCCeed

APRIL 2008
                                                y se St cty
                              F C I - B u r n d C aP r o d uu d s                   7

energy solutions.
    “As utilities invest more and more
                                            Company at a glanCe
in this area, both in the public and pri-
vate sector, we have the opportunity        Established in 1924, FCI-Burndy
to leverage our portfolio here as well,”
                                            Products is the Electrical Division of FCI,
he says. “We’ve focused a lot of our
                                            and together have been delivering quality
resources on in support of this emerg-
ing market and have released several        connectors and connection systems to
new products that are directed specifi-     customers all over the world
cally at the wind farm applications.”       Continued growth has allowed it to
    Texas is one of the largest wind        engage in innovative work and pioneer in
farm states in the nation, and plays        manufacturing high-quality products
host to The Horse Hollow Wind               Rodd Ruland, Corporate Vice President
Energy Center on 47,000 acres               and General Manager of Burndy
in Taylor and Nolan counties. In
                                            Products, has been with the company
July 2007, the Texas Public Utility
                                            since 2001 and has held his current posi-
Commission announced its approval
for additional transmission lines that      tion since 2004
could deliver as much as 25,000 meg-

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                             awatts of energy from remote areas
                             to densely-populated urban areas by
                             2012, according to the State Energy
                             Conservation Office.

                             The full package
                             FCI-Burndy Products’s growth dur-
                             ing the past two years has been
                             “exceptional,” says Ruland. “We’ve
                             had extremely good growth, more
                             than double-digit growth since 2004
                             annually.” Fortunately for FCI-Burndy
                             Products, the current global economic
                             trends do not seem to be affecting the
                             unit’s growth or ability to reinvest and
 the burndy legacy           expand their portfolio.

APRIL 2008
                                                       y se St cty
                                     F C I - B u r n d C aP r o d uu d s                                  9

    Applying the same approach to                    for the civilian population between
competition the company has relied                   2005 and 2006 was 3.4 percent, the
on for 80 years, FCI-Burndy Products                 lowest in New England, according to
“will continue to offer value-added                  the Bureau of Labor Statistics. For the
services to customers so that it’s not               same group, the national unemploy-
all about price –it’s about the entire               ment rate was 4.6 percent.
package offered,” Ruland explains.                       Relying on its history of providing
    Recognizing the high points of                   exceptional customer service, and
FCI-Burndy’s reputation is easy, given               answering the needs of power, data,
its high employee retention rate -                   and telecommunication, FCI-Burndy
turnover is .07 percent according to                 Products continues to seek out ways
Business NH Magazine. Being located                  to become more visible in communities
in New Hampshire has benefitted the                  in which they have facilities. Its goal is
company greatly, although recruiting                 to accommodate their rapid growth by
employees can prove to be difficult                  reinvesting and expanding their portfolio
in a state whose unemployment rate                   to permeate other markets. ¬

aluminum break away & burndy protective ground clamp

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 established in 1993, mti has been time-tested with a proven track record of quality. the company spe-
 cializes in turn-key projects that involve production/manufacturing, machining, assembling, packaging,
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 mti owns and operates a non-ferrous foundry that does silicone/aluminum bronze casting (sand/shell
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 china operation is located in Shanghai.

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                        FCI-Burndy Products
         47 E. Industrial Park Drive, Manchester NH, 03109,

                 T 603-647-5000    F 603-647-5248


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