Digi-Key Corporation recently participated in the Counterfeit Electronic Parts and Electronic Supply Chain Symposium at the University of Maryland in College Park, MD.

Dave Doherty, Digi-Key’s vice president of semiconductor product, represented Digi-Key during the symposium and participated in the Electronic Distribution Panel Discussion with Melanie Pizzey, TTI; Ed Smith, Avnet; and Robin B. Gray, Jr., executive vice president of the National Electronic Distributors Association (NEDA). The panelists led a discussion on the value of the authorized distribution channel in light of the global counterfeit product challenge. They discussed how authorized distribution has evolved and developed best practices and standards to keep up with the growing demands of global production and sourcing, Internet sales transactions, and managing obsolescence.

“The purpose of this symposium is to educate customers and manufacturers on how counterfeit product is introduced and how it can be prevented,” Doherty said. “Digi-Key’s position is that customers and manufacturers should verify the source from which they receive electronic parts. Digi-Key is an authorized, franchised distributor for more than 440 suppliers; our suppliers validate that fact on their websites.”

The Surface Mount Technology Association (SMTA) and the Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering (CALCE)/University of Maryland sponsored the three-day symposium, which provided a forum to discuss how an organization performs part selection and management through the whole life cycle of the parts and changes in the electronic parts supply chain.

“We were honored to have been selected to present our value proposition to the symposium,” said Gray. “The prevalence of electronics is skyrocketing, and with that, the threat of counterfeit products escalates. Gatherings of this nature, with a wide range of government, academia and customer representatives, are critical for the understanding of the value of authorized distribution and the risks of buying from unauthorized sources.”

Senior management, supply chain managers, component engineers, brand protection specialists, inspectors, marketing and procurement policy makers, contracts and legal management, security specialists and government agencies tasked with addressing the issue of counterfeit electronic parts, attended the symposium. The Defense and Aerospace industries were also represented.

“Digi-Key steadfastly promotes distribution of only authorized, valid product from its suppliers and sources 100% of any product we sell directly from the end manufacturers for which we are authorized to represent,” Doherty said. “This allows Digi-Key to guarantee that any product shipped from our warehouse is ‘the real thing.'”

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