West Michigan Electronics Makers Find Growth

EBWE > News > West Michigan Electronics Makers Find Growth

MiBiz, April 2017:

EBW Electronics Inc. plans to capitalize on technological advancements in its niche market of automotive lighting.

Since 2012, the printed circuit board manufacturer has nearly doubled its business, largely due to the proliferation of LED lighting systems in automobiles, said Pat LeBlanc, the chairman of EBW Electronics.

Moving ahead, the company plans to tap into opportunities created by autonomous vehicles, said Dennis Hawver, EBW’s director of engineering. Specifically, Hawver believes EBW can help address how fully autonomous vehicles communicate with pedestrians.

“If you pull up to an intersection with your Toyota Camry and there’s a person crossing the street, oftentimes the pedestrian will look at you and you will make some sort of subtle gesture to cross,” he said. “There’s a human-to-human gesture there.”

For autonomous vehicles in that same situation, the communication could take the form of a red or a green light incorporated into the headlights to communicate the same information, Hawver said. That way pedestrians would know if the vehicle recognized their presence and if it was safe to cross the intersection.

EBW Electronics currently generates annual sales of approximately $50 million. LeBlanc expects the business to grow as the company begins production on a large, unnamed contract in the next two years.

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