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Widening the NET

MVPro interviews managing directors Uwe Post (COO/Sales) and Thomas Däubler (CTO/R&D) to hear what makes NET, New Electronic Technology so different in the market.

MVPro: When was the company formed and with what objective?

TD: It was in 1996 that NET, New Electronic Technology, started with an objective to develop camera technology for the medical and industrial sectors.

The company quickly found its feet and began to grow. Success came with its ability to blend sound specialist knowledge with a host of creative ideas and close attention to it’s customer requirements.

MVPro: Now in 2018, how is the company positioned?

UP: We remain a developer of specialist cameras for the medical and industrial sectors. Both these sectors are balanced 50/50 in terms of turnover, a deliberate policy which means that the company is insulated from a downturn in either area. The medical sector tends to be more stable than industrial, although slowdown in the latter is helped by the company’s long term customer relationships and because there is a development lifecycle of several years.

MVPro: Where is the company based and what are its
main markets?

UP: Apart from our HQ in Germany, the company now has offices in Italy, Japan and the US. Europe is the company’s main market, with the US and Japan next.

MVPro: Who owns the company?

UP: We are part of the TKH Group. We were fully acquired in 2008 when the NET co-founder sold his shares. TKH is a group of companies specialising in the creation and delivery of innovative telecom, building and industrial solutions, with a turnover of over 1 billion euros in 2017.

MVPro: Where are your products used?

UP: Vision solutions for machine builders, system integrators and medical OEMs in Europe, Americas and Asia. We are experts at delivering vision solutions to industry sectors based on application knowledge. We offer ready available open cameras and smart vision systems for individual, or unique vision systems, and also offer highly flexible board-level cameras for dedicated applications.

MVPro: What is your approach?

UP: Working directly with our customers is an important part of the business. We consult on the entire image processing workflow to optimize the vision solution, and provide experience and in-depth application expertise to support customers with ready-to-use industrial vision solutions. We also have a portfolio of components – custom solutions, such as lenses and software, that can be part of the vision solution.

MVPro: Can you explain more about the NET proposition?

TD: Our proposition is what makes us stand out from our competitors. We offer the products to customers that support them in achieving competitive advantages and unique solution offerings. We don’t just sell black boxes, but enable our customers to bring their know-how into the camera, or smart vision system – the NET Open Camera Concept.

MVPro: How have things changed over the years?

TD: A major change came in the early 2010s when we took the decision to develop intelligent cameras and since then we have built-up a profound smart vision knowledge. Our cameras and smart vision systems are flexible to customization, as well as latter adaptations by our clients in regard of the in-camera application function (IP Cores).

MVPro: What would you say is your USP?

UP: We pride ourselves on being able to analyse our customers and their market demands, and translate that into suitable concepts and vision solutions. We understand the entire vision workflow and have a deep understanding of the technological possibilities for the customer’s demand. Not only that, our sales engineers are vision experts for various industrial sectors who actually consult clients on how to achieve their application goals.

We also take a detailed approach into how it works with our customers and suppliers. We believe we ask the difficult questions to really be able to improve, or develop the right vision solution for our clients.

This is why our sales engineers have a very good understanding of the application challenges in various industrial sectors, and do not just focus on selling, but the application solution best for our client. We put our clients first.

What’s more, we focus both on the technical and the commercial aspects of vision to create sustainable solutions.

MVPro: So what is the key objective?

UP: To aim for long-term collaboration with clients who consider ourselves an absolutely trustworthy and reliable partner that boosts transparent communication. We are flexible and can react quickly to client demand with creative solution approaches and innovative products.

MVPro: What about R&D?

TD: We have put a lot of effort into the evolution of powerful cameras that follow the lead of the Open Camera Concept. We continuously develop our competence in smart vision technologies. In short, NET will present an ARM-based vision system making it more convenient than ever to create unique embedded vision applications.

Another example is our new modular camera solutions that will offer great potential to medical device manufacturers as they benefit from more flexibility and improved integration.

MVPro: So what about the future?

TD: The future is smart and embedded vision, and we see ourselves as pioneers in these fields, adding further intelligence to the cameras we develop. We also lead in terms of adding increased functionality into our cameras, initially via Intel and integrated CPUs, but now moving towards ARM technology.

Our highly flexible vision solutions offer new ways for OEMs to achieve a better market position with their application.

We also believe that open cameras will be more important in future. We give power back to customers that really want to make vision a point of differentiation and uniqueness.

We also focus more on vision solutions that allow system integrators to achieve their goals faster. And in smart and embedded vision there a lot potential for more efficient vision solutions.

It’s important for us to continue to introduce innovative product concepts in the future that bring the Open Camera Concept onto a new level for the industry.

We will also continue to offer custom solutions in regard to the entire vision solution, or single components that are also part of their solution.

MVPro: Given that Open Source is such a big concept for NET, the obvious question is, will customers be able to do it for themselves?

TD: Customers are already doing a lot themselves and we are there to provide support and services. We are one of the few companies, if not the only, who adopt this approach, and we recognise that customers are more educated than a few years ago. We also feel that our approach has been well received by the market.

MVPro: So anything else you would like to add?

UP: We continuously extend our business segment with a stream of innovative products which are very much geared to the future.

Our fundamental aim is to develop technology with a human focus, making people’s lives safer and more convenient, and that’s our core philosophy.

MVPro: Thank you.

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