Texas Instruments recognizes South-East European countries as a strong industrial market

InterviewSouth-East European INDUSTRIAL Мarket - issue 6/2008

David Prosser, Regional Sales Manager for Eastern Europe in Texas Instruments for South-East European Industrial Market magazine

What is the place of industrial application products in Texas Instruments portfolio?
Looking back at our business, I think TI has strongly focused on a number of areas in the semiconductor market, such as embedded processing, microcontrollers, digital signal processing and of course analogue. And when you look at that product portfolio, you could find a very good match, particularly in the industrial market, where you are processing a lot of mainly analogue signals, coming into a central processing unit and then having to deal with those signals for sending them back into the real world. In the industrial market it is not just the matter of getting the signals in and out, but also the way you process them. TI is very strong in the digital signal processing market, I think this is an area where a lot of people know TI historically

What is the importance of SEE market for Texas Instruments?
Texas Instruments recognized in the last years, that this is a very big, nice growing market. As I mentioned, South-East Europe is one very important region because it covers many different areas as well as the Bulgarian market. In Bulgaria we have very good business with our partners like Akermann Electronics – in low power microcontrollers. Romania is a market which is growing very nicely. We see interesting potential in the former Yugoslavian countries. And of course Turkey, which has a very large population and a lot of new and interesting customers. And one of the things that TI realizes now particularly in Eastern Europe is how strong the industrial market is in this region.

How do you serve your customers? What kind of support do you offer them?
In the past we supported our clients from a central location, like Germany, and our customers were forced to communicate with us in English. And what we are starting to do now is to push our organisation more out into the countries. So in the last years we opened up local offices in the Czech Republic, Poland, Russia, Turkey – now we have two offices – one in Ankara, one in Istanbul. We are just about to open office in Budapest, which will then be supporting the south-east region. Our intention is to have product specialists and engineers, located in each of these countries that are experts in analogue and embedded processing that could work with customers, to help customers to realize their project ideas, using products from Texas Instruments.

How do you work with your customers?
Our strategy really has been to try and help our customers in East Europe, to offer them technical support and to help them to use our products in their equipments. The way we work with our customers is to try to understand what are they trying to achieve, what design are they trying to do and where they have their main problems. If we encounter a customer whose main problem is getting data from the real world and transferring it into the digital one, we talk to him for example about data converters – TI has a broad portfolio of data converters. And then, once we understand that part of the customer’s system, we are interested in how to expand this system and then talk to him about other application areas, where TI has products.

What application areas you are talking about?
Oh, this is one of the great things to work on for TI. When you have such a broad portfolio of different products there isn’t a single application I think in the world which uses electronics, where TI can’t somehow talk to the customers about a product. But in Eastern Europe, I would mention the industrial market where we have many customers in instrumentation and process control.

Which are the products with the biggest market potential in SEE countries?
One area which is very interesting for us particularly in South-East Europe is utility measuring – electricity, gas, water or heat. This is a market which is very popular across East Europe and a market where TI is very strong in with our very-low-power microcontrollers.
When we look at TI’s portfolio we could find products for acquisition of any kind of real world signals – temperature, pressure, voltage, current and converting them into the digital world, where the signals are processed by a controller or a processor and then sent back out to the real world. This is I think, the main market where we are seeing great opportunities across all Europe and South-East Europe.