Strategic Sourcing

Strategic sourcing is a collaborative and holistic approach to supply chain management that uses fact-based analysis to acquire the organization’s current and future needs at the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO) and risk. This concept causes the purchaser to focus on the needs of the entire organization, rather than just the current needs of one area. For instance, focusing on fully understanding your own value proposition as well as the end customer’s needs and procurement processes, market conditions, and supplier capabilities to achieve the company’s overall, broader goals.

It’s about leveraging your position to find the best value supplier or offer the best value solution within the marketplace. That is, your ability to improve quality, pricing and contract terms to suit your organization’s and your customer’s larger goals. Over time, the process creates a cycle of continuous improvement in quality and contract terms between the purchaser and supplier, leading to increased efficiencies in both parties.

In many instances, especially in the case of SMEs where there is not always excess time in making sourcing decisions, these decisions are heavily based on cost and delivery schedule. This process is mostly reactive to the organization’s immediate needs and often doesn’t take broader goals into consideration.

From the perspective of strategic sourcing, the cost and delivery from the supplier are just the tip of the iceberg. The approach is meant to take into account the total cost of the procurement as well as future opportunities, including internal processes, demand drivers, procurement practices, specifications and operational procedures. Ultimately, any organization even if they are a supplier or SME can gain a competitive advantage by utilizing strategic sourcing processes. These advantages can include cost savings, increases in quality, and access to new suppliers. In the instance of Canadian SMEs, strategic sourcing practices can be used to ensure that your company is offering the best value solution through an efficient and competitive supply chain.

If you are interested in learning more about strategic sourcing and how it can help your organization, join OMX and industry experts for our webinar on Friday December 16th at 2pm EST.

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What’s new at OMX

At OMX, we value our responsibility to keep on top of industry trends. Keeping this in mind, here’s what’s been happening lately at OMX.

We realize that it may be hard for companies, especially SMEs, to keep on top of all of the opportunities in the industry. This task could warrant hiring a specific employee for the job, which isn’t always feasible for small businesses. We’ve taken this feedback from our users and are offering a dedicated Account Manager to all of our clients.

The role of your Account Manager is to be aware of the opportunities in the industry and to let you know when an opportunity matches your capability. Think of your Account Manager as an extension of your sales team – they are more boots on the ground and will ensure that you get your best value engagement from your use of the platform.

At OMX, we also have an obligation to both sides of the supply chain – we have a responsibility to both the primes and the suppliers to provide value. This role is where your Account Manager comes in. Not only do they have a responsibility to make sure that you are aware of opportunities, but they also need to make sure that the prime contractors on the other end are finding the best Canadian suppliers with the capabilities that they need.

Meet your Account Manager:

Godfrey graduated from Rotman Commerce at the University of Toronto with a BComm in Management. Since graduating, he has gained extensive experience in the Information Technology industry in functions including sales, recruiting and operations. With this passion for startups and the technology sector, Godfrey has co-created a digital space to share experiences and best practices, and is host of a podcast series featuring young, upcoming entrepreneurs. Godfrey is passionate about encouraging innovation by connecting Canadian SMEs with opportunities in the industry.

In his spare time, Godfrey enjoys playing rugby, and is currently the first team Flanker for the Toronto Buccaneers Rugby Club (Go Bucs!). On a weekend morning, he can often be found cheering on his beloved Manchester United, or tuning into the latest news in politics, economics, and global affairs. He also loves ice cream, but happens to be lactose intolerant.

On the tech side of things, OMX is always updating the platform based on our users’ feedback. In the past weeks, we have updated our payments system from Paypal to the more user-friendly Stripe. OMX’s integration with Stripe will make it easier for our users to change their subscription levels and monitor their payments. It will also make all subscription level changes automatic so that you will no longer have to wait for someone on the OMX Team to confirm your changes.

Additionally, we have upgraded our user registration process to make it easier for users to create their account and claim their company profile. Users can now associate their user account with an existing company profile directly from the registration page.

OMX has also added increased filtering to the organization profile, including options for women-owned and veteran-owned companies. These changes will make the platform more applicable to global users and will specifically help prime contractors find suppliers that meet their needed capabilities.

What’s coming up?

We’ve spent the past few months ramping up for two large shipbuilding procurements that are taking place this fall – the Arctic Offshore Patrol and Joint Support Ships In-Service Support (AJISS) contract and the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) contract.

OMX has been busy over the summer preparing for the AJISS contract. In-Service Support contracts are the maintenance of equipment and often last for 20-30 years, bringing long term, sustainable business that can be very beneficial for Canadian SMEs. AJISS is estimated to be worth $5 billion by the end of the contract. The bid is closing and primes have to have their Value Propositions prepared by October 25th.

CSC is the procurement for Canada’s future warship integration and design. The RFP is set to be released by the beginning of November. Although the RFP has not be formally released yet, all of the Primes intending to bid have already started identifying suppliers to be included on their Value Propositions and many are using OMX to do so. This contract is one of the largest procurements in Canadian history and is estimated to be worth $26 billion.

Our team at OMX has been reaching out to Canadian suppliers to make sure that they are aware of these upcoming procurements and know how to reach out to the Prime contractors bidding on them. If you are interested in engaging the bidders for these programs, login to your OMX account or contact one of our team members at

By: Katherine Jacome, Project Manager

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You asked, now I’m answering

Thank you to everyone that came out to listen to my speech, Innovation: More than just a Buzzword, at GOCA on Wednesday. Due to the time constraints, I was unfortunately unable to respond to all of the questions submitted using the GOCA app.

Here are my answers if I was unable to get to your question.

Are there tools within OMX to qualify suppliers?

Yes. OMX has advanced search filtering that draws from information entered into the company profile. Users can search for companies based on capability, size, certifications, location, and exports, as well as woman and Aboriginal-owned.

Additionally, we have built the “verify” badge to allow companies to certify the quality of suppliers that they have worked with.

In the event that another infrastructure for similar programs is developed elsewhere (ex Malaysia), can your application be installed there?

Yes. OMX is currently working on integrating with other platforms. This year, we are going to be able to integrate with platforms such as SAP, Dassault Air Design software, and others.

Additionally, OMX is developing a specific government dashboard that will allow primes to report directly to various governments through the platform.

You’re measuring economic and social impact in Canada. What about measuring such impact in other countries. Do you have examples?

OMX is broadening its ability to do full socio economic impacts to include impacts to woman owned, veteran owned, and Aboriginal owned, as well as the impacts to the research, academic and entrepreneurial communities and clean tech sector.

My company has its own ERP software. My commodity managers will only use this system. How can OMX be integrated without adding work for me, the offset manager?

OMX’s API integration will be able to interact with various ERP software, allowing data entered on the platform to integrate with other platforms used by your company.

How does OMX ensure that data inputted by companies and how often are companies asked to update their data?

We have taken a similar approach to user data input as LinkedIn. When a user logs on and updates their company information, they are responsible for ensuring that the data they have entered is accurate. We have built a “claimed’ badge that will appear on a company profile when it has a user behind it. We encourage users to update their company data at least every six months and users can see the last time a profile was updated.

That being said, OMX has built a “Verify” feature where Primes can vouch for suppliers they’ve worked with to let other companies know that what they’ve said in their profile is true. We are in the process of building additional rating features where suppliers can be rated by companies that they have done work for. These ratings will only be visible to Prime contractors and suppliers won’t be able to see their own rating.

Obviously innovation cannot be mandated or forced by governments but in your opinion what can government do to create fertile ground for innovation culture?

There are a few things governments should be doing. First, they should be incentivizing large corporations, such as contractors with offset obligations to work with and invest in innovative companies. They can do this by allocating more points in evaluations for innovation or by providing high multipliers against the offsets. Second, Government should be funding innovation at the very early stages of a product’s development. I like the terminology “Government in, Government out” which they describe in this podcast: A History of Manufacturing in 5 Objects (

How have you recognized an employee for innovation?

In a team environment, I don’t believe that innovation comes from any one person. I think most of the time it works by one person having an idea and other team members responding by adding to it and critiquing it. This is especially true in the case of OMX, where our team is small and often works together in a collaborative environment.

What shampoo do you use?

This is really the most technical question. I usually just use the little hotel bottle shampoos, but I don’t steal extras I swear. When I’m just coming into the office, the team is lucky if I have washed my hair in the morning 😉

***The OMX team had a productive week at GOCA and encourage Canadian businesses that are interested in gaining business from offsets to partake in the conference. GOCA offers a forum for companies involved in offsets and countertrade to meet, discuss opportunities and promote trade.***

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Leveraging Defence Spending: A Guide to Market Segments

When talking to different suppliers and users on OMX, we often run into confusion regarding Market Segments and how they work in procurement programs. Specifically, how small companies that don’t often work in defence, aerospace or shipbuilding, or have never worked in these industries can leverage Market Segments to win business from large companies with offset obligations.

So here’s the gist of it:

In February of 2013, Tom Jenkins identified his Key Industrial Capabilities (KICs) in his report, Canada First: Leveraging Defence Procurement through Key Industrial Capabilities. These served as a way to analyze the capability within Canada’s industrial base and were identified as potential areas for growth within Canada’s defence industrial base.

The KICs identified by Jenkins are:

  • Arctic and Maritime Security
  • Protecting the Soldier
  • Cyber Security
  • Training Systems
  • Command and support
  • In-service support

As a part of the new Industrial and Technological Benefits (ITB) policy that was announced in the Defence Procurement Strategy (read more about that here), bidders for large government procurements will have to respond to a series of identified market segments through transactions in their Value Proposition. These market segments are rooted in Jenkins’ KICs but are created custom on a procurement by procurement basis and do not have to match the identified KICs. The market segments for a given procurement are established based on the capability or capabilities that the Government of Canada wants to target or further develop through the procurement program.

Some examples of market segments could include: Shelter Systems, Marine In-Service Support or Aircraft Maintenance. However, they are not always so straightforward or directly related to the procurement program and this is where it tends to get slightly more complicated. In certain upcoming procurements, we have seen the Government choose to target areas of Canada’s industrial base that seemingly have nothing to do with defence, aerospace or shipbuilding.

In these instances, primes and eligible parties will have to target their transactions towards suppliers within that specific market segment using Direct and Indirect Transactions. In short, government contractors have two ways to fulfill an obligation: a direct or indirect transaction. A direct transaction is one that is directly related to the procurement program that the obligation is tied to. For instance, aircraft parts for an aerospace procurement. An indirect transaction is a transaction where the work itself is not related to the procurement program, but the purchasing or spending on the transaction is a result of the obligations associated with the program. An example of an indirect transaction is a transfer of work for another division within the contractor company to Canadian suppliers for the purpose of fulfilling the offset obligation. Thus, although an identified market segment may not be a capability that is directly related to a procurement program, government contractors may still have an obligation as a result of the program to spend in that area.

Why should this be important to you and your company? If you are a supplier that fits within a targeted market segment on a procurement program, you should be reaching out to the primes or eligible parties bidding on the program. These companies have a requirement to identify suppliers in their Value Proposition and spend in those areas specified under the Market Segments – even if they may not seem relevant to the procurement program itself. Market Segments, especially when they aren’t directly related to a procurement, represent a great way for companies that normally do not work in defence to leverage offset spending to gain business.

By: Katherine Jacome, Project Manager, OMX

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OMX companies…”Verified”

Since nearly Day 1 of launching OMX, we were asked by both the world’s largest procurement departments and some of the smaller, but most experienced suppliers, to have layers of “verification” in the profiles. In other words, some level of endorsement, authentication, recommendation, a social “I know him/her and they do the following work…” cross over to the online platform. You’ve seen it on Linkedin and elsewhere, and now it is here on OMX to stay.
Now that it is officially here, live on the OMX platform, “Verified” rules of engagement are as follows:
  • Any organization in OMX can be verified by another company that is also verified.
  • The idea behind a company being verified is that someone proactively “vouches” for that company – in other words, that you know the organization, and as far as you know, their OMX profile is an accurate reflection of what they offer
  • It will remain anonymous whom verified whom, just that certain companies are indeed verified by other verified companies in OMX.
  • All of our major prime contractors and Tier 1s with significant presence in OMX, will be verified by the OMX team.


Like Linkedin (vs the Twitter “verified check mark” where you have to have a team of PR professionals lobby Twitter to verify you), OMX believes in allowing the community to work on its own, while it serves as the technology platform powering the connections.
By encouraging another verified company to endorse you, that may just be your leg up that distinguishes you from the crowd!
Happy Verifying – Nicole, Founder, OMX
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How to get the most out of Canadian Government Infrastructure spending

There has been a lot of talk in the media about infrastructure spending. The Liberals campaigned on a promise to create jobs from Infrastructure spending, and then their recent Budget laid out a plan to spend Billions in infrastructure over the next decade. So how do we maximize the benefit to Canadian industry from these infrastructure projects? Ensuring Canadian companies and people are hired to do the work itself, since we are trying to maximize economic impact to the country, is important. This direct work will have long term spin off effects to the economy, but there are also other considerations which will have potentially longer term impacts.

First, is a focus on investments in Canadian technology and innovation. If Canadian start ups develop IP to help with infrastructure projects, sell their innovation as a result of these upcoming immediate Government projects, and then in turn export – there will be longer term value to the economy.

Second, are a consideration for hiring Aboriginals and Aboriginal owned businesses. I have talked about the benefits and importance of including Aboriginals and Aboriginal owned businesses in Canadian supply chains, well this is an easy way to do this.

Lastly, there are a lot of inefficient, highly bureaucratic intensive ideas that we have as Canadians to help the environment. Our commitment to the Paris Agreement commits us to reduce Carbon emissions. Well, one simple addition to infrastructure spending could be to incentivize the use of clean technologies. We want to encourage Canadian made and Canadian owned IP of these technologies. If they can be first sold into infrastructure projects, then exported, then a sustainable business model has been developed and sustained.

Sometimes, there is more to consider beyond price. It doesn’t necessarily justify paying a lot more, but incorporating a small budget to encourage infrastructure projects focused on delivering the best product for the best price AND delivering long term economic impacts to Canada would be a good thing.

Some of my additional thoughts can be found in one of the latest Op Ed pieces I contributed to in the Globe and Mail:

Also – here are the details on OMX’s Economic Impact studies:

-Nicole Verkindt, President, OMX

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How do I calculate Canadian Content Value (CCV)?

Recipients of offset (IRB/ITB in Canada) transactions are frequently asked to sign formal Certifications confirming that your local content, or in Canada, Canadian Content Value (CCV) is true and accurate. To be clear, by signing this certification (which you most likely will have to to sell to large Government contractors), the liability is put onto you, the supplier, to ensure your CCV calculation is correct.

By definition, Canadian Content Value (CCV) is that portion of the selling price of a product or service that includes Canadian labour and materials. CCV does not include product components that were imported into Canada. For the purposes of IRB/ITB valuation, only the CCV of a particular work package is counted toward the completion of an IRB/ITB obligation. CCV is calculated by the Canadian offset recipient and shared with the IRB contractor for their reports. As described above, often the prime contractor will require the recipient of acknowledge through some form of language/a certification such as the following:

“Whereas _____INSERT YOUR COMPANY NAME__________has entered into an agreement with Global Defence Contractor (GDC) which will partially fulfill GDC’s Canadian IRB Obligation, AND WHEREAS such agreement requires that, as evidence of the achievement of Canadian Content Value by the Project, the Company shall submit this Certificate of Compliance to GDC; 

NOW, THEREFORE, the Company declares and certifies as follows: i)The information contained in the Company’s annual report to GDC which  reports achievement of the Canadian Content Value for this Reporting Year, is to the best of our knowledge and ability complete, true and correct; and ii) The Canadian Content Value shown in documents appended herewith has been determined in accordance with Attachment 1 to this certificate.  IN WITNESS THEREOF THIS CERTIFICATE OF COMPLIANCE HAS BEEN SIGNED THIS _date______  BY THE COMPANY’S DULY AUTHORIZED REPRESENTATIVE.”

There are TWO methods by which you can calculate CCV; The Net Selling Price Method or the Cost Aggregate Method:

1) Net Selling Price Method: A product or service which bears a substantiated selling price may have its CCV calculated as outlined in the Model IRB Terms and Conditions.

  • begin with the total selling price of the product or service
  • subtract the applicable customs duties, excise taxes and applicable GST, HST and all provincial sales taxes; and
  • subtract any costs incurred as set out in Article 6.2 (Costs or Business Activities that are ineligible for IRB Credit)

In summary, the Net Selling Price Method starts with the Selling Price of the product or service being sold by the Supplier to the Prime Contractor with only the non-Canadian content items removed from that selling price. This formula is top down.

2) Cost Aggregate Method: Any product or service that cannot be assigned a substantiated selling price may have its CCV calculated as the aggregate of numerous factors that contribute to the product or service. Some examples include:

  • the cost of parts produced in Canada, and the cost of materials to the extent that they are of Canadian origin;
  •  transportation costs, including insurance charges incurred in transporting parts and materials
  • wages and salaries paid for direct and indirect production and non-production labour in Canada paid to Canadians or to permanent residents
  • light, heat, power and water;
  • workers compensation, employment insurance and group insurance premiums, pension contributions and similar expenses

The Cost Aggregate Method builds up Canadian value by adding in all profits, costs, and expenses accrued by Canadian activity while subtracting non-Canadian content. This formula is bottom up.

OMX Tools supporting CCV

The OMX automated CCV calculator is accessed via the “Edit Company” menu through the “Products and Services” sub-menu. An example image is shown below:

Through this tool you can use either method to calculate your CCV and publish this content on your OMX profile, or should you wish to keep the total % private, at the final step of using the OMX CCV Calculator, you can elect to email yourself the spreadsheet.

Please reach out to the OMX team directly for assistance on using the OMX tool or contact Industry Canada with specific policy questions. 416 780 9544 ext 115

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Driving business for Aboriginal owned businesses

OMX recently signed an agreement with the Canadian Council of Aboriginal Businesses. Our goal is to drive more business to Aboriginal owned businesses in Canada by sending out opportunities for Aboriginal owned businesses to respond to, and to work with large Corporations to manage, track and report on impacts to Aboriginal owned businesses. I grew up in a Canadian manufacturing business, which was selling primarily to the US market. The majority of our sales were to the US Government and the US Department of Defense. The US have strict set asides, a good portion of which were/are to Native American owned businesses. As a result, we often partnered with local Native American companies, transferred our knowledge and some necessary background IP and then worked along side those companies (one of our factories was in North Dakota – I remember a lot of cold winters spent there).  Instead of giving funding to those communities, the US government was able to help drive increased business to the capable people and businesses to serve as a catalyst and “shot in the arm” to help them either establish or grow. IP transfers and working with experienced partners can set companies up for the long term. I believe this is something we should be seeing more of in Canada. I believe this is something that can be woven right into the fabric of Government procurements, energy agreements and infrastructure spending. We have the people, the resources and the tools available, we just need the will, the direction and some more capacity building efforts.

Check out more on thoughts in the Globe and Mail Op Ed we assisted with along side Chief Isadore Day.

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OMX Launches New B2B RFP Engine to Unlock Global Defence Opportunities for Canadian Industry



For Immediate Release                                                                                               July 1st, 2015

TORONTO, ON – On this Canada Day, OMX is proud to announce the official launch of its RFP (Request For Proposal) Engine. This niche engine will bring direct “Business to Business” opportunities to organizations across the country, and allow government contractors to manage their contractual obligations to source and invest in qualified domestic suppliers and partners.

Canadian organizations, particularly SMEs will now have direct access to Real Opportunities in Real Time, with Real Data from international OEM defence contractors. SMEs, a driving force in the Canadian economy, can simply login to OMX, view RFPs and RFQs (Request For Quotes) that meet their capabilities, respond and engage directly.

As an established tech tool in the Canadian defence industry, OMX acknowledges that a mere mention of ‘engaging with Canadian companies’ is no longer a satisfactory strategy for defence procurement. Companies competing on “Best Value Proposition” will need to demonstrate exactly how many sub-contracting companies have received industrial opportunities and its long-term impact to the country. This new OMX tool will also make contractors more competitive and accountable to the Crown by increasing competition in their supply chains and tracking the exact impacts to the country.

“This is a game changer for OMX, but much more importantly, it is a game changer for the Canadian defence industry. Now Canadian businesses and academic organizations will have access to respond directly to real requirements posted by major industrial partners. Prime contractors will be able to provide more open opportunities to more organizations, reducing their costs while demonstrating their commitments to Canada. The bar has been set higher. Today, and especially with this addition to the platform, no company bidding to the government wants their competitor leveraging the advantage of OMX against them” added OMX President, Nicole Verkindt.

OMX is also integrating all of the relevant content from Buy and Sell and the Defence Acquisition Guide (DAG). By including this in the RFP Engine, organizations will be able to search, sort and filter upcoming opportunities from the Department of National Defence much easier and manage it all under one roof. This initiative was done in partnership and with direction from Aerospace Industries Association Canada (AIAC).

All authorized RFP opportunities posted on the OMX platform will be automatically advertised on our LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter pages. Simply search #OMXunlocked to find them listed on our social networks. For more information on this new feature please visit:

OMX Media Contact:

Diego Ortiz

Director, Analytical Communications

Share your feedback with us:


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Integran Technologies – HUGE results at a nano scale.

By Chuck Black – OMX Contributor

A $200K award made under the Canadian Space Agency‘s (CSA) Space Technology Development Program (STDP) on May 28th, 2015 to “test and optimize a novel nano-material that has equivalent or better performance than aluminum in mechanical strength and stiffness,” has highlighted the expertise of a small firm focused on the electroplating and electroforming of nanocrystalline metals.


CEO Gino Palumbo, relaxing at the Integran offices. The COLT carbon fibre hockey stick he’s holding is coated with a Nanovate™ nickel cobalt (NiCo) application, which makes the stick 50% stronger than an uncoated stick and guards against micro-fractures or catastrophic failure during use. The coating also provides 21% more load and release potential (POP) for the equivalent power, which makes slap shots both harder and faster. The hockey stick, built and sold independently using licensed Integran intellectual property, has been promoted in Dragon’s Den, Money Sense and on TSN. Photo c/o author.

All of which sounds pretty boring until you meet Gino Palumbo, the president and CEO of Integran Technologies and he slips into his story telling mode.

We started out in the 1990’s as research group of what was then Ontario Hydro Technologies. Our job was to develop a way to remotely repair localized corrosion in steam generator (SG) tubing at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station,” he said, during an interview at the Integran offices in May 2015.


A paper focused on the “ElectrosleeveTM Process for in-situ nuclear steam generator repair,” outlined the process which, from 1992 – 1994, was used to perform repairs at the Ontario Hydro Pickering Nuclear Generating Station unit 5 and eventually became the ElectrosleeveTM process. The full paper is available on the International Atomic Energy Association website at

The solution came through the use of electroplating to produce high strength nanocrystalline materials and eventually became the Electrosleeve™ process for nuclear steam generator repairs.

Shortly afterwards, Integran was spun out as a separate entity with its major shareholder being Ontario Power Generation and Babcock and Wilcox, which had been involved in the commercialization of the technology. In 2004, the company was restructured as part of a management employee buyout.

According to Palumbo, the real secret of what is now called the Nanovate™ process is that it doesn’t just repair objects; it can also make them stronger, using less material for a lower overall weight when compared to a more conventional materials.

The current technology uses nanocrystalline alloys of Nickel, Iron, Cobalt and Copper to coat parts made of plastic and carbon fiber in order to create high performance parts which are lighter, stronger, harder and cheaper than Aluminum; corrosion, waterproof and wear resistant; shielded against low frequency magnetic interference and even able to efficiently absorb energy and noise.

The company is also open to technology licensing for appropriate mass production opportunities and have already licensed to manufacturing partners in Canada, the United States, Mexico and China.


Integran COO Andrew Wang, R&D unit manager Brandon Bouwhuis, VP R&D Dr. Jon McCrea and CEO Gino Palumbo showcase a variety of parts created using the Nanovate™ process.

>>Follow OMX on Twitter to discover technologies making a difference in aerospace and defence. Converse and share ideas using #OMXtechtalk. 

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