Editor's Note: Don't forget to check out our Distribution Special in our March print edition of ECN.

Kurt Colehower, President of Americas Components at Arrow ElectronicsBy Kurt Colehower, President of Americas Components at Arrow Electronics (

Like much of technology, the role of distribution is evolving with market demand. Outsourcing can provide significant advantages, especially in today’s business climate that includes leaner engineering staffs, and new challenges facing management. The increased complexity of today's technology, combined with time-to-market pressures, make outsourcing noncore competencies more attractive.

Suppliers and OEMs are increasingly turning to their distribution partners for design services. Distributors offer a broad view of a technology since they understand the technical devices and how they are integrated into the customer’s end design. Distributors can provide a one-stop-shop – and help designers improve productivity by avoiding the extra time and effort it may require to solve a simple issue.

At Arrow Electronics, our design-win activity remains at high levels, which positively impacts other areas of our business. As a full-service distribution partner, customers look to us for a complete solution, and value-added services are no exception. As customers turn to us for design services, it fuels more components into the pipeline, which calls for greater inventory of those products.

As a leading global provider of products, services, and solutions, Arrow Electronics offers unparalleled engineering expertise and solutions that work across a broad range of applications. Our world-class design services, training, and tools help customers keep projects on track. Arrow works with customers at each stage of the product development cycle to streamline the design process and get products to market quicker and more efficiently.

Arrow offers a full suite of value-added services and design solutions that help customers realize lower total cost of ownership through the combination of world-class services and industry-first partnerships and product offerings. Arrow provides customers with a complete solution including component information services, materials management, device programming, assembly services, manufacturing and integration services and more.

Specific services include Arrow Consulting Engineering Services (ACES) that helps customers save time, effort and resources by connecting them with prescreened, qualified and certified third-party solutions and design service companies. This elite team focuses on specific market segments, enabling them to leverage previous designs and offer customers a higher level of focus and talent.

Arrow's Custom Logic Solutions team offers flexible, risk-reduced and cost-effective ASIC designs that range from FPGAs to structured ASICs, and from standard-cell ASICs to foundry services. Arrow has unparalleled ASIC experience and program management capabilities, and offers the right combination of vendor technology, design services and intellectual property.

The Arrow Embedded Platform Concept (EPC) is a solutions-oriented development platform set to launch in the Americas this year. Currently available to Arrow customers in Europe, the EPC provides a turnkey solution to help simplify embedded design, so engineers can focus on generating and developing their ideas for industrial applications.

Our global network of component programming centers provide the highest levels of quality assurance through the use of standardized systems and procedures, world-class facilities, and automated equipment. This electronically linked network provides global support for our customers’ programming and tape-and-reel requirements. Additionally, Arrow now offers 24-hour turnaround on programming First Articles.

Arrow’s Component Information Services deliver technical, part availability and environmental compliance data needed to develop bill of materials with less redesign and faster time to market. Arrow’s unique Breaking Tape & Reel program helps save time and reduce inventory by allowing customers to order strips in quantities cut to their specifications -- ideal when smaller quantities are needed. Visit for more information regarding Arrow’s value-added services and solutions, and to access MyArrow for custom pricing and terms, design tools, online training and promotions.