Rex Rozario, Part 4: A 10,000-ft. view of his Business Ventures, the Industry, and Life

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Matties: Their shares cover that; that’s fantastic.

Rozario: What was a small pocket is now...

Matties: A deep pocket.

Rozario: Well, at some stage if they sell it off or whatever then they’ll get a nice benefit for coming in. My policy has always been, and it was like a catchphrase here, that people make the difference. In many cases they do, because it's their efforts and what they put into the business that helps, and some people put in 110%. They got a piece of the profits instead of the owners just taking it. I was fairly fortunate. We all had a lot of business and we were one of the biggest exporters. My whole comfort has never been from the company, like my house and my boat and all these things. I don't even have a company car. If I do something I would rather pay it back than expense for it. I think the guys over here appreciate all that, that it's not been taken off and spent on whatever. That's where we stand with the company itself and about 12 people are now involved as shareholders as well.

graphicplc_frontend.jpgMatties: You bring a lot of your profit back into the company.

Rozario: With the profit we are making we are now adding an extension to the building, which is going to cost about 1.2 million pounds.

Matties: Do you finance that yourself, or do you use cash flow?

Rozario: No, the building is leased to Graphic by my property company, Kirton Ventures Ltd., who will finance the building. In China, we’re also looking at the next stage and then at some point we’ll have to build an extension.

We haven't taken any returns or dividends in China. It's always been plugged back into the machinery. You saw the machines in the shop when you visited, and if you tried to count it and put a price to it, we're talking about mega bucks there, in the millions of mega bucks. It works for us. If you want to stay in front and do things, then you have to do that and not take your money and run and do whatever you want to do.

Matties: And you're still having fun. What else are you going to do?

Rozario: I'm still enjoying it. Doing things like talking with you today. I enjoy meeting people and I'm very fortunate to travel the world and to also be the Secretary General of the World Electronic Circuits Council, because I'm constantly in communication with everybody. In India, we have the Indian Printed Circuit Association, who over the years hasn't been getting into many world conferences and things like that, but now we have the largest electronic association in India who wants to join the WECC. I discussed this with IPC and we feel they are qualified. At first, IPCA objected because they didn’t want another big brother in India.

graphicplc_shop2.jpgAt these exhibitions, what you don't see behind the scenes is that we have our WECC meetings, our standards meetings, and we're constantly talking to each other and talking about technology as well. Over the last two years, some of the associates from China, Taiwan, and Japan have been talking about the science park at Exeter, and looking at whether it can get a group together to start looking at further developing PCBs from design to manufacture, as a joint effort.

All these things are going on behind the scenes, which sadly a lot of people in manufacturing are not a part of because they decided not to get involved with the federations, thinking it isn’t cost effective or whatever. But there is a certain benefit, knowledge-wise, and when something new is happening they can get the facility to use them even with a competitor.

From that point, I'm quite happy about what we have done. Otherwise, most people I know now have retired years ago and disappeared out of the scene. They don't come to anything and nobody is in contact. I had an old boys’ network about 10 years ago with Bill Miller, of Prestwick Circuits. If you remember, he was one time president of IPC as well, and the only British guy before me to join IPC. All those people aren’t in communication or contact, but I still do meet people like you.

Matties: It's fun. I've been in this industry 30+ years. There are a lot of really nice people in this industry.

Rozario: I think the Far East can’t even appreciate it, because the West has given them a huge livelihood. To think that it all came from UK and the USA and now Asia capitalized on it, because again, the difference was that most of the companies in the USA, the small shop boards just stayed small. They didn't automate, where people in Taiwan saw reason to do it in a bigger way, with bigger factories and more automation and they're still around. The little guys, which were good companies, suddenly couldn't sustain the business. I feel there's still hope for us in the future. I want to be there for many more years and make sure that I can see the next generation of technology.

Matties: Looking at the platform you built and the way you're doing it, I don't see any reason why you wouldn't be around.

Rozario: Thank you for your confidence. I hope so.


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