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This year, ACR Electronics, Inc. is celebrating its 50th year as a world leader and global supplier of safety and survival technologies for the military, marine, aviation and outdoor markets. A celebration of the founding of ACR will be held on May 2nd at ACR’s home base in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The event will include honored guests, employees, the media, and worldwide dealers, who have been key to the company’s success over the years.
The ACR story has been one of invention, ingenuity and initiative. Since its beginning in 1956, ACR has grown to the forefront as the lead manufacturer of a wide range of safety and survival products that are sold in almost every country of the world. Internationally, ACR has grown from only a handful of accounts to a global network of some 200 dealers and service centers. International sales, for example, account for 20 percent of ACR’s current total business.
From the dazzling heights of the NASA space program to the earthly interests of the individual boater, airplane pilot and outdoorsman, ACR products have led the way in design, development and durability. Even the crew of Apollo 13 relied on ACR’s magnesium-powered pen light in 1970 when power failed, providing the sole source of light as they worked to get their capsule back to earth.
ACR has been credited with saving countless lives during military operations. Its survival beacons, hand-held VHF radios and FireflyÂ® emergency pocket strobes have been standard gear for combat troops.
While the military initially may have been the impetus for developing many of ACR’s products, the company’s principal thrust today is non-military. ACR has earned a reputation as a dependable manufacturer in the area of search and rescue technologies. The company’s satellite-detectable beacons play an important link in the Search and Rescue system that has saved more than 17,000 lives in the last 15 years.
With these rescue devices, ACR’s product range has expanded dramatically to include Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs), Emergency Locator Transmitters (ELTs), Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs), emergency strobes, VHF radios, Search and Rescue Transponders (SARTs) and water-activated lights.
In 2003, ACR branched out into the field of marine bridge safety electronics when its parent company, Cobham plc Group, acquired Austria-based Nauticast, AG, an Automatic Identification System (AIS) supplier. ACR markets AIS under the GlobalWatchâ„¢and GlobalWatch2â„¢ brands. This year, ACR announced an alliance with Maritime Information Systems AS MARIS to share proprietary software, engineering and manufacturing systems to more aggressively and effectively design, build and bring to market a suite of maritime information and safety electronics systems.
As the industry leader in supplying life saving products, the ACR Electronics name has become synonymous with quality. From its 60,000-square-foot facility in Fort Lauderdale, an in-house team of innovative professionals and skilled technicians provide the strength behind the research, development and manufacture of ACR’s advanced technology devices. Many of the products have to pass internationally and domestically mandated specifications. Those same products are also subjected to rigorous testing and ACR’s own, oftentimes, more stringent requirements.
Company President Paul M. Frank, who recently celebrated 25 years of service with ACR, attributes the company’s success to the focus and dedication of its employees. â€œOur mission statement which is â€˜We will build quality products knowing they are used to save lives,’ is known by every employee. Every letter we receive from a person whose life was saved having used one of our products re-enforces the importance of what each of us does. Every documented â€œsaveâ€ increases the pride of the employees in being part of ACR and is one of the reasons that the average tenure of our employees is so long,â€ Frank said.
In the years ahead, Frank sees tremendous growth potential for ACR through developing and acquiring high quality new products. By building upon the company’s world-renowned reputation for excellence and reliability, Frank said he plans to increase ACR’s strong brand identity and bolster it newest endeavors in the outdoor equipment and bridge information segments. In the next half century, ACR will continue to use innovation and ingenuity to uphold its standing as the world leader in safety and survival equipment.
ACR Electronics, Inc. (www.acrelectronics.com), a Cobham plc Company, designs and manufactures a complete line of safety and survival products, including EPIRBs, P-ELTs/P-EPIRBs/PLBs, Bridge-based Information Systems, SARTs and safety accessories. The quality systems of this facility have been registered by UL to the ISO 9001:2000 Series Standards. Recognized as the world leader in safety and survival technologies, ACR has provided safety equipment to the aviation and marine industries, as well as to the military, since 1956.