04. December 2018
DECTRIS USA anniversary: Full US experience since 2017
This November, DECTRIS USA have been working with customers for a full year. Its first year was spent building up the Support team, equipping the Philadelphia office, and meeting customers and partners on their home turf.
Just two blocks from the Independence National Historical Park, the birthplace of the United States, Pascal Hofer is busy discussing travel itineraries with Zachary Brown. Hofer is the General Manager of DECTRIS USA, who was sent from Switzerland in April 2017 to build the new branch from scratch. Brown, the first person Hofer hired for the new company, is in charge of DECTRIS Support in the Americas. The two men are about to fly to Chicago to commission a detector at the Sector 30 Beamline at the Advanced Photon Source, and Brown is expected in Berkeley shortly thereafter.
“We fly a lot, so being so close to the Philadelphia International Airport comes in handy,” says Brown. “Of course, sometimes we only need a ten-minute subway ride to reach a customer,” he smiles.
DECTRIS USA has a support lab with a fully-equipped spare parts inventory for all systems that are installed in North America. This means that US customers no longer need to send their parts to Europe for servicing, and the US Support team is able to visit them more frequently and on shorter notice. Even with the addition of Field Systems Engineer Matthew Hall, the busy travel schedule of the now-three-person US team demonstrates how great the need for a US subsidiary was.
In addition to offering quicker and more frequent visits, signing a contract with a US-based company saves local customers a lot of hassle. “We can quote everything in US dollars and reduce the customers’ currency risk. DECTRIS also handles all import and customs paperwork,” explains Hofer. “We can really offer a full US experience.” Naturally, the US Support team is in contact with the Swiss headquarters every day to make sure all knowledge is shared between the countries and across departments.
North America is not the only market to reap the benefits of the Pennsylvania office. In addition to being part of the East Coast academic and industrial hub, Philadelphia is a sweet spot for DECTRIS to serve its customers globally across different time zones. Institutions in South America suddenly seem much closer, and even East Asia and Australia enjoy much better coverage.
Hofer and his team will stay busy in the coming years, too. The two basic goals of constant improvement and stock part expansion take energy on their own, but DECTRIS also has plans to strengthen its foothold in the United States. "You will hear much more from us," Hofer promises.