"Exhibiting as a group will give a powerful message," Cao told Light Reading. "We will be perceived as a much bigger player."
Over the past couple years, the majority of components vendors, including the likes of JDS Uniphase Corp. (Nasdaq: JDSU; Toronto: JDU), have been attracted to China as a manufacturing base, because of low labor costs. But Cao wants to take this idea one step further.
"They [components vendors] are only attacking the labor cost in the overhead," says Cao. "We can really provide an extra advantage to the customer, by addressing the materials supply."
The cost of materials makes up the largest part of the overall components cost -- up to 65 percent, he says. Many folk are buying their materials from suppliers all over Asia, and may not be getting the best prices. The GCPS consortium has already negotiated prices with established suppliers, he claims, which means it can help its customers lower costs and make the entire manufacturing process a lot smoother.
So far the consortium has six members:
- Arasor Corp., a subsytems manufacturer
- AocTel Inc., a manufacturer of fiber, cable, and optical subcomponents
- Browave Corp., a provider of OEM and ODM services for passive and active optical components
- Comcore Optical Technologies Inc., a manufacturer of passive optical components
- Ningbo Yunsheng Optical Communication Technology Inc., a manufacturer of fiber optic connectors, jumpers, and outside-plant fiber optic distribution subsystems
- Sinoceramics Inc., an optical and electronic materials manufacturer
The Chinese government clearly takes Cao and his company seriously. The investment arm of the Guangzhou government, Nansha High Technology Investment Ltd., has just agreed to finance a 200,000 sq. ft. factory for Arasor in the municipality's new Nansha IT Park. The facility, which will become operational in the fourth quarter of this year, will be the largest production facility built in Guangzhou since 2000.
Separately, Arasor plans to announce on Monday that it has acquired Lightbit Corp., a startup developing all-optical wavelength conversion technology (see Interest Grows in Wavelength Conversion).
— Pauline Rigby, Senior Editor, Light Reading