AccelerateEMS Raises the Bar for Online Events

We’ve been hearing about how the pandemic has accelerated the digitalization of the electronics manufacturing industry; it has also seen marketers scrambling to find online event platforms to bridge the gap between our memories of in person trade shows (was APEX really in 2020?) and the increasing Zoom fatigue from sitting in virtual meetings all day.

accelerateCalcuQuote and its sponsors have made substantial progress in that endeavor. Yesterday’s accelerateEMS attracted over 300 participants, and was a pleasant and informative day; a well balanced mix of presentations, networking opportunities, and exhibits. The presenters and exhibitors were well-prepared and there were very few technical glitches.

The event was designed for EMS leaders and innovators. It focused on accelerating efficiencies in the component sourcing process using digital tools, including CalcuQuote’s own quoting tools. The exhibitors all offered solutions that were targeted to supply chain sourcing tasks. This narrow and well-defined focus made it easy for attendees to drop in and find answers.

The keynote was from Richard Margolin, founder of Robokind, a unique hardware/software provider in the education space. Robokind robots were designed to help autistic children learn social skills. Margolin’s presentation described the journey to develop a robot that could provide therapy as well as, or in some areas better than, a human. That means the robot had to have facial expressions that were realistic enough to enable imitation by students that might require thousands of repetitions. The electronic and mechanical engineering involved in that effort was fascinating to hear about. He concluded his presentation with a lesson to teach attendees how to say goodbye.

Other presentations included a panel discussion about M&A in EMS with PriceKubecka accountant Jason George, M&A advisor Tom Kastner and Zentech Manufacturing President & CEO Steve Pudles; and one on EMS security and CMMC & ITAR compliance, featuring security expert Matt Konda and ITAR lawyer Michelle Schulz.

Earlier this month, we asked Chintan Sutaria, CalcuQuote’s President, about why they chose the Hopin platform for the event.

The biggest reason for choosing the Hopin platform is to make a highly engaging conference, as if you were literally walking through an expo floor and meeting exhibitors and peers from the industry to catch up on what’s new. Accessing the event will be entirely browser-based, but I’d recommend getting a mic and webcam so that you can make the most of the event. We wanted to find a way to facilitate networking, one of the biggest benefits of trade shows in our experience, so we’re excited to offer a variety of ways to connect with other event attendees.

One of the main tools is the Networking tab that will randomly match you with other conference participants for a brief video conversation. There’s an event-wide chat as well as chats specific to the main stage and individual exhibitor booths. You can chat with other participants individually in the People tab, and even invite others to a one-on-one video to meet face to face.

Innovation was a key theme of the day. “Companies that were digitally enabled were better prepared to adapt to the changes and disruptions of COVID-19,” continued Sutaria. “The world, and EMS along with it, is becoming increasingly aligned with technology and it’s critical the industry prioritizes digitalization. COVID-19 has emphasized the importance of this transformation, and I believe we will continue to see adoption of new technologies in the recovery period.”

Sponsors of the event include:


The recording of the sessions will be available at



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