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Appleton Celebrates 120 Years

Appleton™, a cornerstone brand of Emerson, is proud to announce its 120th anniversary of service to the electrical industry. Since 1903, the Appleton brand has been the benchmark for quality in the industrial and commercial construction sectors. Today, with a stable of hazardous and non-hazardous location products that number more than 21,000, Appleton is recognized as a global leader in supplying the energy, chemical, mining and wastewater industries, as well as the commercial and manufacturing markets, with a highly diversified range of solutions that enhance business value while delivering safer, more reliable power.

Appleton traces its roots back to the dawn of the electrical age in America. The Appleton Electric Co. was founded by Albert Ivar Appleton, an entrepreneur and recent immigrant to the United States, who traveled by horseback to sell his Unilet® conduit bodies and boxes through the streets of Chicago. By 1947, Albert’s two-employee office had been replaced by modern facilities boasting more than one million square feet of manufacturing and warehousing space located at 1701 Wellington Avenue.

That same year, Albert Appleton turned over the reins of the Appleton Electric Co. to his son, Arthur, who would lead the company into a period of unprecedented expansion. It was Arthur Appleton who, in the early 1960s, shifted the company’s product focus toward the fledgling hazardous location marketplace. Through continuous innovation, hard work and an aggressive network of 1,200 distributors, Appleton leapfrogged into the No. 1 ranking worldwide in several key categories of that product arena.

The Appleton Electric Co. was founded in 1903 by Albert Ivar Appleton. He is pictured above traveling by horseback to sell his Unilet® conduit bodies and boxes through the streets of Chicago.

During his tenure, Arthur Appleton contributed many inventions to the electrical field, acquiring more than 160 patents still in use today. Upon his retirement in 1982, the Appleton Electric Co. was sold to Emerson Electric with its headquarters later moved from Chicago to Rosemont, Illinois. In the ensuing years, Arthur Appleton devoted a significant portion of his time to charitable causes, notably the establishment of the Appleton Museum of Art in Ocala, Florida.

Appleton was energized by becoming a member of the Emerson portfolio of global brands. In 1997, it joined forces with OZ-Gedney, SolaHD and Nelson to better provide industry-wide electrical solutions. To fulfill the rising demand for residential and commercial heating cables, Appleton purchased EasyHeat in 1998. In 2003, it expanded internationally into the IEC and ATEX markets with the acquisition of ATX, based in Amiens, France. Appleton can now supply a global portfolio of top-quality electrical solutions that enable defense against severe industrial conditions and dust, fumes and gas in hazardous situations as one brand under Emerson.

By partnering with other Emerson companies, Appleton accelerated its evolution as a technology innovator and is now better positioned than ever before to supply comprehensive power solutions to hybrid, process and discrete manufacturing in the Industrial IoT era. For instance, Appleton recently upgraded its leading LED fixtures, including adding dimming and integrating Emerson’s transformative PlantWeb™ digital ecosystem to give plant operators improved control, operational visibility, better energy efficiency and significant performance gains. It has also embraced Emerson’s environmental sustainability strategy to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045.

Regardless of the challenges it has confronted throughout the past 120 years, including the Great Depression, two world wars and the global financial crisis, Appleton has remained one of the strongest, best-recognized brands in the electrical industry.

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ABB Installation Products Appoints New SVP, Channel Director
Jack Bellissimo

Jack Bellissimo joins ABB’s Installation Products Division, formerly known as Thomas & Betts, as senior vice president of product management, marketing and strategy, leading the U.S. and Latin America region portfolio of electrification solutions. He will focus on strategically positioning the business in the global marketplace to continue developing, manufacturing and marketing products used to manage the connection, protection and distribution of electrical power in industrial, construction and utility applications.

“The industries we serve are experiencing significant transformation, and ABB has invested in expansions and improvements to increase manufacturing capacity, innovation and sustainability, and bring

needed products closer to customers,” said Ralph Donati, executive vice president and U.S./Latin America region leader, ABB Installation Products Division. “Jack’s strengths in strategic planning, innovation, team development and market knowledge will help us continue to meet customer demand and market growth.”

Bellissimo joined ABB from Hubbell Electrical Products, a division of Hubbell Inc., where he was the vice president of marketing and product management. He led this organization toward profitable growth and the introduction of multiple new and innovative products. Before that, he held sales and product leadership roles at Hubbell and Michelin, as well as operations and supply chain management roles at GE Power.

He served five years as an Airborne Army Ranger and Sr. Intelligence Analyst with the 75th Ranger Regiment, U.S. Army. He deployed three times to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and is a recipient of the Bronze Star Medal.

Bellissimo shared, “ABB Installation Products has a long history of developing products that set the standard for the electrification industry. Together with our teams, we will build on this tradition of excellence, leveraging a diverse portfolio of 38 renowned brands. Our mission is to deeply engage with our valued customers, addressing their market challenges and forging sustainable, long-term solutions. Drawing from my experience in executing complex initiatives and fostering cross-functional collaboration, we are committed to expanding solutions that not only meet our customers’ needs but also prepare them for a future of sustainable and profitable growth.”

Chris Marlow has also joined ABB Installation Products, leading its U.S. channel organization and strategic initiatives focused on further strengthening relationships with electrical distribution and retail partners. He and the account management team will work with partners to enhance the customer experience through service and loyalty programs as well as sales strategies and training.

“The Installation Products Division has made significant investments to expand manufacturing capabilities and capacity, drive innovation and sustainability, and bring products closer to customers,” said Deni Miller, senior vice president of sales, ABB Installation Products Division. “With ongoing growth in our U.S. operations, partner relationships are essential to our go-to-market strategy. Chris’s strong leadership, relationships and industry experience will propel our efforts of providing unrivaled channel support.”

Marlow joins ABB with more than 22 years in the electrical industry and experience partnering with top distributors, contractors and agents across North and South America. Most recently, he led strategic growth for Cerrowire, a Berkshire Hathaway company. Prior to that role, Marlow held various sales and sales leadership roles at Southwire.

Marlow shared, “I’m fortunate to join a team with a long history of innovative electrification solutions that contractors and installers rely on every day. As Channel Director for ABB Installation Products, I look forward to collaborating with the channel management team responsible for the balance of ABB Electrification’s portfolio and continuing to grow our connections in the industry. Working together with our partners, we will make the purchase decision synonymous with ease of doing business.”

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Arlington Names New VP of Product and Business Development

Richard Temblador has joined Arlington’s Executive Management Team, based in Scranton, Pennsylvania. His title will be vice president of product and business development.

Temblador has more than 30 years in the electrical industry. He has a well-established background in sales and marketing of electrical products and is familiar with all electrical distribution channels.

He also holds more than 50 United States patents. During his tenure in the electrical industry, Temblador has participated in various UL/CSA technical panels, NEMA technical committees and is well-versed in the National Electrical Code and Canadian Standards and Codes.

“Arlington Industries is committed to new product introductions, business growth and innovation,” stated Tom Gretz, president. “Temblador will be joining our dedicated Scranton, Pennsylvania corporate team and will participate in all phases of product development, product growth, advertising and business development.”

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HPS Appoints Vice President of Marketing

Hammond Power Solutions (HPS) has appointed Ted Simpson to the position of vice president of marketing. Simpson succeeds Michael Frayne as Frayne transitions to the role of senior vice president of Power Quality and Power Conversion Solutions.

Simpson is a highly experienced marketing professional with more than 20 years of expertise in the electrical industry. He has held key positions at well-known companies such as AD as SVP of marketing as well as Philips Lighting where he spent 16 years in a variety of roles including general manager of Canada and head of marketing for North America. Most recently he helped business owners grow their business through his consulting service practice.

Simpson brings extensive experience in product management, sales, and strategic marketing to this role. His experience in successfully developing and executing new products and marketing strategies across distribution, consumer and OEM channels utilizing customer and market data will be essential to pioneering new marketing technologies ensuring execution of our commercial plans.

“It’s exciting for me to be a part of a team who has over a century-long legacy of innovation and who has earned the reputation as a trusted partner committed to modernizing electrical applications in the most sustainable manner possible,” said Simpson.

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IDEAL Industries Names New COO

IDEAL Industries Inc. announces the promotion of Doug Sanford to Chief Operating Officer (COO), a new position for the company. In this role, he is responsible for the organizational strength and performance of the three global brands under the IDEAL Industries umbrella: IDEAL® Electrical, Anderson PowerTM and Enatel®. This move reinforces IDEAL Industries’ focus on elevating the electrical, power and infrastructure industries for the future.

“Doug’s thoughtful approach in executing a focused business strategy has ensured the company’s position to win in all markets where business is conducted,” says IDEAL Industries Inc. CEO Steve Henn. “We are confident his promotion will further strengthen our company’s focus, vision and values.”

The COO position is responsible for the day-to-day operations of IDEAL’s key brands and is important in ensuring symmetry across business units. Sanford provides unique analytical, organizational and communication skills that will allow him to excel in this newly created position. He will oversee that the company’s core values are executed across the global organization within all aspects of operations.

Sanford joined IDEAL Industries in October 2016 as the group president for IDEAL Electrical. He was promoted to senior vice president, E&I in August 2019 and for the past four years has been driving strategic focus and global alignment across the divisions to support greater organic growth and profitability.

Prior to joining IDEAL Industries and beginning in 2003, he held general management roles within HA International, International Equipment Solutions and Hendrickson.

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Leviton Announces VP of US Sales, Network Solutions

Leviton announced the promotion of Brian Sorensen to vice president of U.S. sales, network solutions. Sorensen will assume the role from Brad Leland who will retire on Jan. 2, 2024.

“Since joining Leviton more than 17 years ago, Brian has played a key role in our company’s growth and industry relationships,” said Daryoush Larizadeh, Leviton president and CEO. “Brian brings a deep understanding of the Leviton business, and we are excited that he will lead our network solutions sales organization.”

“We are grateful for Brad Leland’s contributions in developing and leading our network solutions sales team and wish him the best for his retirement,” added Larizadeh.

Since beginning his career as a national account manager at Leviton in 2006, Sorensen supported global relationships across diverse geographies, meeting strategic objectives to support value added distribution. In his new role, Sorensen will leverage his relationship skills to help Leviton capitalize on technology convergence and globalization.

“We are thrilled to have Brian step into this role with his leadership qualities and strong relationship skills,” said Randy Mortensen, senior vice president, global sales and marketing at Leviton. “During his time at Leviton, Brian has been responsible for managing relationships with some of Leviton’s largest partners. He consistently exceeds plan objectives, while providing profitable growth for Leviton’s partners.”

“I have had the honor of working with Brad for several years, and he has been instrumental in developing and leading our network solutions sales team in that time,” said Mortensen. “Prior to his retirement in January, Brad will closely partner with Brian to ensure a seamless and successful transition for our customers at Leviton.”

Leland joined Leviton as the vice president of sales, network solutions in 2007. During his time with Leviton over the past 16 years, Leland helped build Leviton’s network solutions offerings, including leading Leviton’s acquisition of Berk-Tek. The acquisition solidified Leviton as a single-source manufacturer of end-to-end systems—including connectivity and cable—for customers around the world.

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Mersen Appoints New Director of Customer Care

Naomi Towns is joining Mersen Electrical Power as director of customer care North America reporting to Ferran Sacrest, vice president sales & customer care Americas.

Towns brings with her more than 25 years of experience in the North American electrical industry at Emerson, where she held several positions of increasing scope and responsibility in accounting, IT, sales operations and customer service. In her last role as North American customer service manager, Towns led a team of 45 customer service professionals across multiple sites.

Her experience executing transformational projects and implementing process improvements at scale in large organizations make her the ideal candidate to lead Mersen’s customer care team in North America.

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OmniCable Announces New Hires

Omni Cable LLC hired Scott Drafs as Seattle regional manager. In this role, Drafs is responsible for the day-to-day operations and leadership of OmniCable’s Seattle branch, which services electrical distributors located in Alaska, Montana, Northern Idaho, Oregon and Washington.

Drafs has more than 25 years of experience in the electrical industry. Prior to OmniCable, Drafs was with Ewing Foley Representative Agency as industrial sales manager for the NW Region. He was also the branch manager at Stoneway for seven years and the branch manager for Platt Electric for 12 years.

OmniCable hired Carmel Cunningham as director of business development, communications business unit. In this role, Cunningham is responsible for leading the execution of OmniCable’s growth strategies in the industrial automation connectivity end markets.

Cunningham has 35 years of experience in the communications industry, with the last 15 within the industrial sector. Prior to OmniCable, she was with CommScope for 10 years, Belden for 15 years with two spent with Rockwell, and most recently, two years with Cisco Systems.

OmniCable also hired Nikki Douglass as director of sales, datacom business unit. In this role, she is responsible for leading a team of datacom sales specialists to support the OmniCable sales team.

Douglass has more than 30 years of experience in the datacom industry. Prior to OmniCable, she spent 18 years with CSC/Wesco, leading the New York City Datacom business for nine years.

OmniCable also hired James Curran as vice president of enterprise, datacom business unit. In this role, Curran is responsible for providing leadership and growth for the Datacom and Enterprise business.

Curran has more than 30 years of experience in the industry. Prior to OmniCable, Curran led global sales for C&D Technologies, a leader in Stationary Power solutions. His career has primarily been in sales leadership roles, targeting solutions for Enterprise and Data Center applications for market leaders like CommScope, supplyFORCE and Cisco Systems. Curran also led CommScope’s commercial organizations in the Middle East, Africa, Northern Europe, and North American sales roles over a 20-year period.

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Mersen’s Mike Lang Honored with Prestigious Award

Mike Lang, principal field engineer for Mersen Electrical Power, received the Electrical Safety Excellence Award during the 2023 Petroleum and Chemical Industry Conference (PCIC) in New Orleans.

The Electrical Safety Excellence Award was presented to Lang in recognition of his outstanding dedication and contributions made to advance and accelerate information and knowledge impacting electrical safety through activities within and external to the Petroleum and Chemical Industry Committee. Lang has been working and contributing throughout his career to further enhance arc flash safety in collaboration with IEEE and NFPA.

Lang has participated in more than 1,000 arc flash tests in Mersen’s high power test lab as leader of the Mersen arc flash team. He is the coauthor of several prize-winning IEEE papers on arc flash including papers at the 2006 PCIC Conference, the 2008 PPIC Conference, and 2016 PPIC Conference. He received the 2011 I&CPS Ralph H. Lee Department Prize Paper Award for his work on 208V arc flash research. He received the 2018 Technical Award for Excellence in Prevention Through Design by the Electrical Safety Committee of the IEEE Industrial Application Society. Lang previously held the co-chairman position of the IEEE/NFPA Collaboration on Arc Flash Research effort and has served as a member of the Research, Test and Planning Committee and on the Technical Advisory Committee as part of Mersen’s Platinum sponsorship of the Collaborations research. Lang continues to support the IEEE 1584 Working Group.

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NAED’s Erika TenEyck Wins Researcher of the Year

The Marketing Research and Insight Excellence Awards has named Erika TenEyck, NAED’s director of business intelligence programs and insights, as its Researcher of the Year (End Client). The Researcher of the Year award recognizes “a trailblazer making a significant difference in the overall promotion of market research as well as the performance of their organization.” She was selected for this prestigious award for her path-breaking work in leading NAED’s Journey Map of Product Data study. As the industry continues to evolve with new technologies and business models to meet customer expectations, product data must also align with this transition.

“It’s an honor to win this award and appreciate Gold Research, especially Nitin Sharma and Greg Tucker, and the team at Quirk’s,” TenEyck said. “However, I cannot take sole credit since the study could not have happened without NAED members. I’d like to thank our amazing task force whose dedication and input proved invaluable, the support of the NAED Foundation Board of Directors, and the NAED distributors and manufacturers who provided a better understanding of roles, processes, and suggested best practices. I share this award with everyone involved and am grateful for their commitment to help solve ongoing industry issues together. Thanks to their contributions, we can now better pinpoint opportunities to streamline and improve processes related to product data.”

The results of the study not only provided a highly informative journey map but also revealed that the current state costs the industry billions—a minimum of $2 billion—due to inefficiencies.

“The importance of quality product data has only grown as business practices have increasingly centered around online information and processes,” TenEyck added. “It was so interesting to outline each step of and visualize the entire process from beginning to end for the industry. In doing so, we not only learned so much from the people who work with product data, but also the friction points that can lead to inefficiencies and higher costs in productivity. The study is the first step to help address some of those gaps and bring into the spotlight the power of product data for the industry. Complete, clean, and updated information benefits everyone and can positively impact all aspects of the supply chain.”

This study conducted with Gold Research brought to light the importance of precise product data and underscores its importance in members gaining operational efficiency, enhancing customer experiences, and in increasing sales. The impact of the “Journey Map of Product Data” is significant.

“NAED is fortunate to have manufacturers, distributors, and allied partners who have dedicated numerous resources to improve those processes, and their input served as a great starting point to discuss next steps. We look forward to sharing more on the impact of product data with the follow-up study with Gold Research that will be released shortly.”

The Marketing Research and Insight Excellence are the industry’s most respected marketing research awards and are open to researchers worldwide.

The NAED Journey Map of Product Data research is available to NAED members for free. You can download your report at

Acuity Acquires Horticulture Products, Receives Product Innovation Awards

Acuity Brands Inc. reached an agreement to acquire the Arize® family of horticulture lighting products from Current Lighting Solutions LLC. The company has also reached an agreement with Hort Americas LLC for it to remain as the exclusive distributor of these horticulture lighting products throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

“By adding these high-powered, greenhouse-focused luminaires to our horticulture lighting portfolio, Acuity Brands will be positioned to greatly expand our product offering to the fast-growing controlled environment agriculture market, while taking advantage of our lighting and controls expertise to help growers increase productivity while decreasing energy consumption,” said Tony Gineris, VP and general manager, Industrial and Outdoor, Acuity Brands Lighting and Lighting Controls. “In addition, we will be aligning ourselves with Hort Americas, an established leader in the commercial greenhouse space.”

Founded in 2009, Hort Americas (Bedford, Texas) works closely with qualified manufacturers to bring to market quality, technically advanced and cost-effective products for use in commercial greenhouses, vertical farms and controlled environment agriculture applications. Hort Americas has focused on understanding how LED grow lights can help growers improve production and improve their operating expenses by decreasing energy consumption since 2010. They constantly work with growers to understand their needs and respond with science-supported educational materials, while working with their manufacturing partners to develop products that meet those needs.

The transaction with Current Lighting is expected to close by the end of January 2024 when the Arize products will join the Verjure™ series of horticulture lighting products from Acuity Brands. The Hort Americas agreement will go into effect upon the closing of the transaction with Current.

Acuity Brands also announced that 12 architectural lighting luminaires representing the company’s Aculux®, Cyclone Lighting™, Eureka®, Gotham®, Hydrel®, Juno®, Lithonia Lighting®, Luminaire LED™, Luminis®, Mark Architectural Lighting™ and Peerless® brands were selected as 2023 Product Innovation Award (PIA) winners by Architectural SSL magazine. The PIAs recognize innovative LED and solid-state luminaires and fixtures on the market, while also spotlighting the players behind the components that make up these light sources.

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NSI Industries Welcomes Cast Products Inc. to the Family

NSI Industries LLC has acquired Cast Products Inc., a distinguished manufacturer and supplier of high-volume engineered zinc die cast components based in Norridge, Illinois.

Joe Saganowich, NSI Electrical Division president, remarked, “The strategic manufacturing focus of American-made products, Cast Products’ storied history spanning more than five decades, and their robust technical and engineering capabilities make them an ideal addition to the NSI family.”

Cast Products, Inc. has been delivering high-volume engineered zinc die cast parts at a competitive price without compromising on quality, service, or integrity. Zoli Salata, president and CEO of Cast Products Inc., emphasized, “Our commitment to customers through providing top-tier products and services aligns with those same values as NSI, and we will all be even stronger as a result.”

This acquisition not only adds to NSI’s diverse portfolio of respected brands but also strengthens our position as a leader in the industry.

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Southwire Purchases Genesis Wire & Cable, Partners with READY Robotics

Southwire Company LLC announced that it has completed the purchase of Genesis Wire & Cable based in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin.

“After announcing the acquisition in September, we’re excited to officially welcome our newest Southwire team members today,” said Winn Wise, senior vice president of Infrastructure at Southwire. “We look forward to completing integration activities and getting everyone onboarded as seamlessly as possible. We’re excited for these experienced professionals to now be part of The People Behind the Power™.”

Genesis Wire & Cable is a leading U.S. low-voltage cable manufacturer, providing critical connection for a wide range of residential and commercial applications, including comfort, security, network and communications, entertainment and fire and safety. The company serves a broad set of distributors, dealers and professional contractor customers.

Southwire also announced a partnership with READY Robotics, a pioneer in cutting-edge automation solutions that overcome the obstacles faced by manufacturers, to deploy automation at five of the company’s facilities.

Through the partnership, Southwire’s Retail East Customer Service Center (CSC) in Villa Rica, Georgia.; Utility Products Plant in Carrollton, Georgia.; Kentucky Plant in Hawesville, Kentucky.; Florence Plant in Florence, Alabama.; and Bremen Campus in Bremen, Indiana will participate in the automation pilot.

“Partnering with READY Robotics provides us with an opportunity to leverage their expertise, as we continue to deploy cutting-edge technology within our operations,” said Alex Thomas, chief engineer at Southwire. “Continuous improvement is critical to assuring that we safely service our customers, and this partnership helps us accelerate those efforts by using smart solutions that fit nicely with our history as an innovation leader in the industry.”

To prepare for the project, READY Robotics conducted an Automation Readiness Assessment (ARA). This systematic analysis, led by automation professionals, identified potential automation opportunities within Southwire’s production facilities. The ARA process evaluates both traditional automation opportunities and high-mix

low-volume (HMLV) operations. These HMLV operations are often seen as challenging to automate without a versatile solution like READY’s ForgeOS, their proprietary industrial OS for robotics and automation.

Allan Gibson, vice president of Automation & Manufacturing Technologies at READY Robotics called the partnership a “game-changer.” He added, “Our collaboration with Southwire to deploy industrial robotics, mobile robotics like automated guided vehicles (AGVs) or autonomous mobile robots (AMRs), and Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) across their corporation using ForgeOS is transformative. It underscores Southwire’s commitment to efficiency, quality and sustainability.”

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OmniCable’s Tampa Branch Expands to Larger Facility

Omni Cable LLC has relocated its Tampa location to a larger facility.

With OmniCable’s Tampa business growing exponentially over the past three years, it was time to invest in more inventory, a larger operational space and new equipment to support its customers. “We have over $40 million of inventory (and growing) in a prime location for will-call support and statewide shipping lanes,” said Chris Sorah, OmniCable’s Tampa regional manager.

The 200,000-square-foot facility carries OmniCable’s full line of products as well as striping (spiral and in-line), paralleling, bundling and custom labeling, jacket printing, and custom work with cable management.

“Our facility expansion delivers on OmniCable’s unwavering commitment to the region’s distributors and growing demand for best-in-class manufacturer brands, inventory breadth, and project services,” said Bryan Dabruzzi, OmniCable’s regional vice president, southeastern region.

The new location is at 8800 E Adamo Drive, Suite 250, Tampa, Florida, 33619.

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Siemens to Invest More Than $500M in U.S. Manufacturing

Siemens announced an investment of $150 million in a new high-tech manufacturing plant in Dallas-Fort Worth to help power American data centers and critical infrastructure. This plant will produce state-of-the-art reliable and efficient electrical equipment. It will enable accelerated growth of U.S. data centers, which is being driven by the exponential adoption of generative AI. It will also ensure secure operation of critical infrastructure. This investment specifically supports long-term customers in the data center space, where demand is expected to grow by around 10% annually through 2030.

“There’s never been a better time to invest in critical electrical infrastructure and green mobility to support the backbone of America’s economy. The hardware and software we offer—produced through our expanded U.S. manufacturing presence—will ensure that growing industries can meet demand while continuing to make progress in decarbonizing operations,” said Roland Busch, president and CEO of Siemens AG. “With this latest step, Siemens is delivering on its €2 billion global investment strategy for 2023 to boost growth, innovation and resilience.”

As part of these investments, Siemens announced a $220 million investment in a new rail manufacturing facility in Lexington, North Carolina, earlier this year. Construction of this facility is now underway. In addition, the company is investing in two electrical-products manufacturing plants in Grand Prairie, Texas, and Pomona, California. These projects bring the overall investment in the U.S. this year to $510 million, which will create 1,700 jobs at Siemens as a result.

The new Fort Worth facility and the Grand Prairie and Pomona extensions will meet booming demand for the electrification of critical infrastructure—in other words, data centers, battery plants, semiconductor facilities and EV charging. Production at the new facility in Fort Worth is expected to start in calendar year 2024, gearing up for full operations in 2025. This factory will be built and operated using Siemens advanced manufacturing tools, including digital twin technology and high-tech automation to ensure the highest quality, efficiency and sustainability levels. The Siemens Xcelerator portfolio will be used to capture and analyze data from the shop floor on production and product performance in real time.

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Moblico and Optimizely Join Forces

Moblico, a leading mobile engagement platform that provides mobile communication, marketing and commerce solutions and Optimizely, the leading digital experience platform (DXP) provider, are thrilled to announce their strategic partnership. This partnership brings together the best of both worlds to deliver an unrivaled mobile engagement experience that goes beyond traditional e-commerce.

By leveraging their respective strengths, Moblico and Optimizely are poised to revolutionize mobile engagement solutions and redefine the way businesses interact with their customers.

The partnership combines Moblico’s robust mobile engagement platform with the best of Optimizely’s e-commerce solutions. The result is an innovative combination of a world-class custom-branded B2B mobile hybrid app with superior barcode scanning capabilities, a consistent integrated responsive web experience, personalized end-user interface features, empowering unified messaging services, campaign management tools to monetize the mobile channel and automated system-triggered mobile notifications that will empower businesses to connect with their audience on a whole new level.

“We are excited about this collaboration with Optimizely, as it enables us to extend our mobile engagement capabilities beyond what we could achieve individually,” said Pierre Barbeau, CEO of Moblico. “With Optimizely’s digital experience platform and Moblico’s mobile communication and marketing solutions, businesses are able to create compelling, tailor-made experiences that foster deeper connections with their customers.”

Optimizely’s platform offers a plethora of tools for businesses to optimize their digital experiences. From website optimization and personalization to A/B testing and analytics, Optimizely allows companies to understand their audience better and deliver highly targeted and engaging content.

Both companies are committed to delivering innovative solutions and exceptional support to their customers, making this partnership a perfect fit for businesses seeking to elevate their mobile engagement strategies and take their company to the next level.

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Thomas Scherzer to Retire from Current

Current recently announced the retirement of Thomas Scherzer, vice president, national distribution.

His career at GE has been marked by a series of notable accomplishments. He has played a key role in the development and launch of several successful products and services, and he has helped to grow Current’s business in a number of key markets.

Tom joined GE in 1982 as a sales representative in Kansas City, and quickly rose through the ranks, holding roles of increasing responsibility in Sales and Business Development. In 1999, he was named region sales manager, North America Professional Sales, and in 2016, he became the general manager of North American Distribution and the Agency Network.

In his most recent role as vice president of national distribution for Current, he was responsible for oversight of Graybar, Grainger, WESCO and several independents such as Sonepar, Rexel, CESCO, CED, BSE and buying groups. As a trusted partner to customers, he played a key role in the success of Current.

He joined the Electric Association Board of Directors in 1999. In 2004, he chaired the Vital Strategic Planning Committee, which helped the organization survive a difficult time. Facing the loss of major funding sources in the late 1990s, he led the effort to introduce new programs that provided valuable membership services and helped begin the effort to achieve financial security. He has also served on the Annual Conference Committee, Auction Benefit Committee and Golf Committee. He was nominated and elected as an officer in 2010 and has since served as secretary, treasurer and vice president before his election as president in December 2016.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in marketing from Washburn University. In addition to his professional success, he is also a dedicated and active member of his community, exemplified by his participation in organizations such as Chicagoland GE Volunteers. He and his family enjoy spending time between Chicagoland and Phoenix. He is an avid golfer and a passionate fan of the Kansas City Chiefs.

Scherzer’s retirement is a significant loss for Current and the industry. He is a true leader and a role model.

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Robert ‘Bob’ Stone Retires from Trimble

Robert Stone has announced that he will be retiring at the end of this year. He has worked with Trimble (Trade Service) for more than 20 years and has worked closely with many IMARK members.

Stone, who came to Trade Service in 2000, and prior to that worked in the same industry for the Howard W. Sams Company for 21 years, said, “It has been my honor to have served so many great people and companies over the last 23 years at Trade Service, and at Howard W. Sams prior to that. I will miss everyone in the industry, but I look forward to the next chapter of my life. Trade Service has been like a family to me for so long that it is hard to imagine stepping away, but I know they are in great hands for the future.”

Stone began his career at Trade Service leading the product management team and went on to manage customer support, sales, and technology partnerships in his role as vice president business development. In retirement Stone will keep busy with family, woodworking, golf, cooking and serving in his local church. Stone is transitioning his Trade Service responsibilities to Rachel Slade, who can be contacted at

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