Process control industry commentator Jim Pinto talks-up National Instruments’ NI Week and claims that the company is going from strength to strength.
I recently visited National Instruments’ (NI) Texas-based headquarters in the USA on a consulting assignment. I must tell you, this company continues to amaze me – the motivated people, the steady stream of new products, the impressive facilities campus, and the continued growth — even in recessionary times.
My visit was just a couple of weeks before the annual ‘geek bash’ called NI Week – I call it ‘geek week’. The editor of USA publication Automation World, Gary Mintchell, was there. He reported that founder, president and CEO of NI, Jim Truchard (they call him Dr T) greeted a record crowd with his opening keynote remarks: the “financial engineers” who helped create the mess we’re in should go back and do “real engineering” to help get us out. The way mathematics has been taught in business schools has serious flaws; they are trying to apply the laws of physics to an area with a lot more variations, he said.
NI is a company that prides itself on technological innovation. Some companies may be sales-driven, a few may be marketing-driven, but NI is still a nimble, technology-driven company. And nowhere is this seen as much as in the latest release of LabView, NI’s flagship software, and the supporting cast of hardware.
National Instruments’ revenue is now about US$725 million, with a market-cap of over US$2 billion and some US$0.25 billion cash in the bank. The company has a unique corporate culture. Three years ago, Dr T predicted that NI would continue to grow towards the next benchmark of US$1 billion. Today, this fiercely independent company is still on track.
Jim Pinto is an industry analyst and commentator. Contact him on email@example.com or visit www.jimpinto.com