On July 22, M/A-COM Technology Solutions (M/A-COM Tech) celebrated its 60th year of innovation with a picnic for employees outside their headquarters in Lowell, MA. After merging with Mimix earlier this year, they have been on a roll and are now running 3 shifts in their manufacturing facility as demand for their products is strong.

Joe Thomas, CEO of M/A-COM Tech, kicked off the celebration by asking for employees with over 40 years of service to stand (there was one employee with 43 years of service), then 35, 30, 25 (by now there were a large number of employees standing), etc. His point was well taken that they still have a large number of long term employees even after all the splitting up of the company by Tyco Electronics a couple of years ago (for a complete history of the company, see our April 2010 article).

Thomas also noted that there are many new employees and interns from nearby colleges, so the company is continuing to introduce young employees into the workforce. He also thanked the new owner, John Ocampo, and the employees that organized the event which is included lobster, steak, chicken and vegetarian dinners plus ice cream, cake and lawn games.

I had the opportunity to tour their facility after the event with a walk through their wafer fabrication area. I was impressed by the variety of products and processes that the facility supports. They manufacture Si and GaAs diodes, various Si transistors and GaAs MESFET/PHEMT MMICs (using mostly 4 inch wafers). It is more of a job shop producing the lower to medium volume products while high volume products are produced by outside foundries that are on 6 inch wafers. This allows them flexibility to produce somewhat customized products along with high volume products outside in a cost effective manner. They use a hybrid business model between an IDM and fabless company and have a dual use model (commercial and military).

The fab is at high capacity utilization with the current workload and they are even expanding their floor space by putting some of the designers next door in another facility. They are rationalizing their product portfolio with the addition of Mimix and determining the right mix of products to offer their customers. We wish them continued success.