ACUTRONIC was founded in 1973; how did you come up with the name “ACUTRONIC”?
The name had to serve multiple purposes; to be on the front in an alphabetical listing as well as unique enough to qualify as a registered trade mark. ACUTRONIC is a fusion of Accurate and Electronic. Precision mechanical assemblies are integrated with advanced electronic. Even today, 40 years later, it is still very descriptive.
What were the big topics when you founded ACUTRONIC in 1973?
The end of the Apollo program in the USA in the early seventies led to restructurings allover in the aerospace industry. At the same time driven by strong national motives European countries were keen to build up their own capabilities. The inability of the predominating American Motion Rate Table suppliers to customize their products to local needs (i.e. local manufacturing, metric, customer support) created a great window of opportunity for ACUTRONIC. Subsequently, ACUTRONIC Switzerland founded subsidiaries in France, Germany and the UK.
Where do you see the biggest contrast in the business life of 1973 and today?
Certainly the ease to communicate with customers. As a start-up company ACUTRONIC had no telephone. To get into contact with foreign customers required a lot of organization. We had to pre-announce our international calls, drive to the Post office for telex communication in the village and be “short and precise” because it was so expensive. Whereas today, you can skype on your smartphone whenever you want.
At the age of above 80 you still have many technical ideas you want to realize?
(Laughing). Technical challenges have always been a key driver in my professional life. When I arrived to the US in the early sixties I worked for Goerz Optical Co., amongst others famous for their telescopes. So now, I have decided to build a telescope all by myself; all the required parts are stocked at home … let’s see if I’ll find the time!