Rene Zakhour left his family behind in his native homeland and immigrated to California to further his university education in engineering with an MBA. After graduating and a brief stint at Stanford Research Institute, he joined Veriflo as an engineer designing components for gas welding (National Welding’s, better known as Veriflo, primary product at the time). Halfway through his twenty-three year tenure with Veriflo, he moved to sales and marketing where he basically built the Instrument Division which focused on the fledgling semiconductor industry. Rene brought innovation to high purity gas handling developing and introducing tied diaphragm pressure regulators, quarter turn diaphragm valves, flow switches and flow limit valves among other things. His contributions to what is now termed ‘ultra high purity’ gas handling are as impressive as they are numerous. A change in ownership in 1987 from Veriflo’s founding family to an investment group was Rene’s impetus to depart the company and start off on his own.
Rene founded AP Tech in June 1987. The humble beginnings were in Marin County where new products started to flow to market in 1988. His concept was to build rugged, reliable products backed by superior service and support and what he created was the magic of AP Tech. Word quickly spread about this new company and product demand soon pushed for more manufacturing space. The company relocated in 1992 to a new 40,000 ft² manufacturing facility in Napa, CA. Sales and product breadth continued to expand driving yet another move to an even larger facility. In November 1997, the existing building was occupied, all 80,000 ft² with 10,000 ft² of class 100 cleanroom.
AP Tech has grown to be a global market leader in pressure regulators and valves for the semiconductor and other clean industries. This was accomplished due to Rene’s vision and steadfast determination to providing the ultimate best in customer service and support.