Few things in the connector industry go back 60 years. The unique collaboration between Avnet and Amphenol is one of them.

Radio. That’s where it all began for two of the connector industry’s leading players. Amphenol, an early manufacturer of radio components, was innovating within that industry when a parts distributor named Charles Avnet took notice of Amphenol’s components. His customers liked the dependable, versatile Amphenol parts he offered them, and as their needs evolved, Avnet brought that information back to Amphenol, which could nimbly create the solution needed for radio, television, and other emerging technologies that helped shape civilian life as well as wartime equipment. Together, as the decades passed, the two companies helped bring the components needed to facilitate the ever-expanding technology revolution. “Having collaborated for 60 years now, Avnet and Amphenol work together like a well-oiled machine,” said Vince Arena, Director, Global IP&E Supplier Management at Avnet. We checked in with Amphenol too, of course, and CEO R. Adam Norwitt helped explain how these companies became stronger by working together.

Connector Supplier: Tell me about your company’s origin story. Why was the company founded and what were some of its earliest products?

Avnet: Avnet was founded in 1921 when Charles Avnet began buying and selling surplus military and ship-to-shore radio parts in NYC’s “Radio Row.” Avnet quickly diversified his offerings to include automotive antenna assemblies and television parts.

Amphenol: Amphenol started out in 1932 as a manufacturer of tube sockets for tube-based radios. The company was an early innovator of a wide array of communications and RF products used in radio and television, as well as products used in military equipment beginning at the time of the Second World War.

CS: What were some significant turning points in the company’s product line?

AMPH: Amphenol became