Joining the Association of the Radioelectronic Industry Consortium
Andrew Kucheryavy, Rezonit is an acknowledged leader of PCB production in the country and one of the leaders of contract electronics manufacturing. What production facilities does the company have?
If we are talking about our current production sites, Rezonit owns two PCB plants and three assembly shops. PCB production plants are located in the village Zubovo of the Klin district (Moscow region) and in Zelenograd (Moscow). Assembly shops are located in Zubovo, Zelenograd and St. Petersburg. We will complete the construction of a new plant located in the Special Economic Zone of Alabushevo in Zelenograd at the end of 2021. On 15 thousand square meters there will be a PCB production shop and assembly production to provide a full cycle of contract electronics manufacturing.
How many employees work for Rezonit?
Today, about 750 people work in the company's production facilities and offices. According to our plans, the number of employees will exceed 1000 people after the new plant launch in Alabushevo at full capacity in 2023.
What part of Russian printed circuit boards is produced in your plants? If it's not a secret, can you share information about the company's turnover?
It's not a secret, it's a public information. The year is not over yet, but I think that the turnover will be slightly more than 4 billion rubles by the end of 2020. At the moment, about a quarter of all domestic printed circuit boards is produced in our plants. I believe that the launch of the new plant in Zelenograd and the modernization of the production site in Zubovo will help us to significantly increase our market share.
Who are your clients? Tell us about the fields of application of your products? Do you work only in the Russian market or do you export a part of your products?
More than 10 thousand Russian companies from Vladivostok to Kaliningrad are our clients. Among them there are some large manufacturing concerns, small and medium-sized companies, small design centers and startups. Unlike many Russian manufacturers, we also accept individual orders. We are proud of the wide range of applications of our products - automotive electronics, fire and security systems, computer and medical equipment, telecommunications equipment, industrial electronics and much more. The only thing we don't do is military equipment.
At the moment, we are working in the Russian market. We have always had plans to enter foreign markets, but so far this is not possible due to the almost total utilization of current production capacities. I hope that with the launch of the new plant we will be able to export some PCBs.
You mentioned that you do not produce military equipment. Why don't you do this?
The key competence of Rezonit is urgent production. We have to subordinate all production logistics to the idea of deadlines optimization, use special technological and IT solutions in order to produce printed circuit boards with a lead time of one day minimum. This approach runs counter to the procedures used in the production of military equipment. In addition, when working with such orders, it is necessary to run sales and marketing in completely different ways. We decided not to try to kill two birds with one stone.
Let's go back in time. How did you come into the industry? Why did you choose printed circuit boards? Tell us about the main stages of your professional activity.
In 1993, I graduated from the Moscow Institute of Electronic Technology in Zelenograd with a degree "Design and Construction of Integrated Circuits". It was impossible to find a job in the specialty back then, so I traded radio components in the well-known Mitinsky market. Later, I started to manufacture phones with a caller ID, where I had to deal with PCB suppliers due to the nature of my production activity. I was interested in this direction, which led to the decision to take up printed circuit boards as the main activity.
In 1997, the company Rezonit was founded. At first, there were only three employees including me. The company was engaged in intermediary business: with active advertising tools, we attracted customers and accepted orders for printed circuit boards, carried out engineering processing of projects and placed orders in factories of Russia, Belarus and the Baltic States. In 2001, we began to cooperate with Chinese manufacturers of printed circuit boards, implementing some of their orders. After a significant portfolio of orders was formed, we launched our own assembly production in 2003. After that, we launched the first PCB production workshop in 2004.
Do you still work with Chinese PCB manufacturers or do you make all orders using only your facilities? Tell us about the technological level of your production in Russia comparing it with your Chinese and European counterparts.
We assembly printed circuit boards exclusively in our Russian sites. Quick turn and small PCB orders are also always carried out in our production facilities. Talking about medium-sized PCB production, such orders can be made both in Russia and in China depending on the current load and project parameters. Mass orders are usually produced in China, but we do this because of cost, not the technological level. In terms of technological equipment, we are in no way inferior to Chinese and European manufacturers.
Working with such a large number of orders, you can accurately judge about the level of Russian electronics. How far do we lag behind global trends in the level of development, materials and technologies?
If you take a look at the order structure, you can see a huge difference between the industry status 5-6 years ago and today. Five years ago, Russian manufacturers mainly produced simple one-sided and double-sided PCBs, and the share of multi-layered, flexible-rigid, high-frequency and hybrid boards was insignificant. Now we are not inferior to European countries in terms of the share of high-tech boards. As manufacturers, we can see a qualitative increase in the level of engineering projects: Russian developers use the most modern materials and technologies.
Is it possible to achieve independence of PCB production from China in the coming years?
In order to talk about independence from China, Russian PCB market has to grow several times. Only in this case can we seriously talk about Russian materials for the PCB production, chemistry and specialized equipment.
Due to what factors the Russian PCB market can grow? Are there any prerequisites for this?
This is possible primarily due to the program of electronic production localization in the country, which includes providing tax incentives and direct subsidies to those manufacturers who can confirm that their product is produced in Russia. In fact, this program is already successfully working: recently, we have seen a huge number of requests for the PCB manufacture and assembly with the compulsory condition that the product has to be produced in Russia. We are talking about automotive technology, data storage systems, medical devices, security systems and many other electronics.
It has to be said that the production localization within the country is a global trend. For example, there are some successful programs that consist in the electronics production return from China back to European countries and the United States.
Is it possible that the country simply does not have enough capacity to produce so many products?
Most likely, this will happen at first, so it is important to take into account both the current capabilities of Russian manufacturers and long-term plans of the new production facilities launch. In the past few years, there has been a large imbalance between supply and demand. Sooner or later, this had to result in a serious investment in the industry. As far as I know, in addition to our new plant in Alabushevo, other several large PCB production plants are planned to be built in the country. If all these plans are implemented in the next five years, the PCB production capacity in Russia will grow several times.
Tell us more about your new plant, please. When do you plan to finish the construction?
The production area of the new building in the Special Economic Zone of Alabushevo is about 15 thousand m2, the anticipated number of employees is more than 450 people. On the first two floors there will be a PCB production plant, which capacity will be up to 5 million dm2 per year. On the third floor there will be an assembly shop, and on the fourth one there will be office space and engineering equipment. At this site, we plan to focus on our urgent services for customers: the PCB production, PCBA and the manufacture of stencils for SMT assembly. The construction of the new plant is almost complete, we have started finishing the premises and installing engineering systems. Commissioning is scheduled for the fall of the next year, and the release of the first product is expected to happen in the summer of 2022.
A few words about the budget of the construction of a new plant and sources of funding. Do you use support programs?
As I mentioned above, the new plant is located in a Special Economic Zone. This gives us some significant benefits for land and property taxes, and also involves free engineering, such as heat, water and electricity. When purchasing new equipment, we plan to take advantage of customs privileges.
The total budget of the project exceeds 2.2 billion rubles. We have implemented the construction part of the project at our own expense, and we plan to use a preferential loan or a program of subsidizing the leasing rate when purchasing equipment.
You mentioned the modernization of the Zubovo plant. Is it also worth waiting for an increase in the production capacity?
Modernization of the Zubovo plant is not about new production facilities, but rather about reaching a new technological level in both PCB production and assembly. The need for modernization is driven by the complexity of the products that we need to produce, primarily under the localization program. We are talking about computer servers, telecommunications equipment, data storage servers, and these are probably the most complex products in modern electronics.
We wish you good luck in all your endeavors!
Thank you very much.