Exclusive Interview with Nick Roche
We interviewed Nick Roche, our Managing Director, to discuss KME’s biggest challenges and solutions in the defence industry, alongside our greatest assets and customers. Nick also shares his personal career background and future visions.
What is your background?
I started my career as an Electronic Design Engineer at Thorn EMI FERGUSON. I then moved from there into a sales role at Sony, where I was responsible for CRT monitors, where I enjoyed a 15 year long career ending as the Sales and Marketing Director for computer monitors and storage products in Europe.
What’s the company’s background?
The company was formed in 1976, manufacturing and supplying electronic modules for use in CRT monitors. KME then developed its own range of CRT monitors and expanded during the 80s and 90s, making monitors for multiple different industry sectors, for example process control, broadcast, banking and machine tools.
With the advent of LCD panels, the competition increased dramatically and threatened the company’s survival as just a general industrial monitor manufacturer. I then decided to refocus the company's activities towards more demanding sectors, such as rail, marine and military.
Over the last few years we have further focused our efforts in the military sector as we have found that it plays to our strengths of making specific designs to meet the customers exact requirements.
What is your vision for the company?
My vision is to take the company both broader and deeper into supporting the military sector. By broader I mean that we now have the capability of supporting land, sea and air projects. By deeper, I am keen to pursue more safety critical projects in both hardware and software.
What are the challenges faced by a display company in the defence industry?
Well, we often find that customers approach us with a combination of both legacy systems needing to future proof their system with open and backwards compatible technology.
How does KME respond to this challenge?
We have developed a number of circuit modules that can be adapted to meet particular project requirements and we have an agile design team that can extend these further as needed.
What are the greatest assets in KME?
Without question, it is our people; the combination of 100s of years of combined experience in design, manufacturing and quality is only ever gaining further value by the innovative input from our new recruits.
What is the main USP for KME?
Our main selling point is very clear. We design quickly and effectively for each project using proven circuit modules and to quickly develop designs as needed to meet the specific project requirements, whilst meeting the high standards required in the military environment.
Who are KMEs customers?
In the main, our customers are a mixture of Military Prime contractors and tier 2 and 3 system integrators based all over the world.