IN MEMORIAM—Ed Swartz, 1935-2013

Tributes have started pouring in to Sanford, North Carolina, USA, following the passing of Ed Swartz on Monday, 4th November. He was 77. Swartz founded Static Control Components in 1986. The Sanford Herald says Swartz was one North Carolina’s “most prominent businessmen”. His imaging industry colleague and friend Art Diamond says he was “one of Georgia Tech’s toughest engineers.”

Swartz leaves behind his wife, Barbara, his daughter Karen, son Michael and wife Audra, son William and wife Mary and nine grandchildren. He also leaves a legacy of courage and two-fisted management, a man who fought for the intellectual property rights of his employees and respected those of his competitors, be they OEMs or aftermarket players.

Swartz’ strength, his honesty, his commitment to product quality and innovation touched each and every person and company in this industry, whether they ever met him personally or never even knew him. A man of courage, he accepted every challenge the industry thrust upon him, often dedicating millions in legal fees to defeat a weak or invalid patent or a threatening lawsuit.
He was instrumental in deciphering the first encrypted smart chips by hiring a team of engineers, scientists and mathematicians, including those erudite former staff members of Bell Telephone Laboratories.

Above all else, Swartz stood up for cartridge remanufacturing, protecting thousands of jobs and careers. He also sheltered many of the recharging businesses that were his customers by finding a workaround, non-infringing solution to an OEM patent. In a word, Ed Swartz can take much credit for the growth of the cartridge remanufacturing industry.  (Watch

According to his obituary, Swartz was born in Winston-Salem on the 13th December, 1935, and in addition to Static Control, also ran several other companies in Sanford, including Santronics Inc. and what is now the 3M facility in Sanford.

The family are requesting in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society, Cystic Fibrous Foundation or Hospice of Lee County. Tributes can also be left online at or
A dear friend and a fearsome enemy, Ed Swartz was a backbone to the imaging industry. Knowing him was a blessing; missing him is a great sorrow.

See as follows SCC‘s official statement:

Ed Swartz was a true entrepreneur, starting a recycling business in Sanford when he was in his 20s. In the 1970s, he sold his business and retired, but retirement didn’t suit him in the least. In 1986, Ed came out of retirement and founded Static Control Components, Inc. Static Control first began manufacturing static shielding products in Ed’s basement, assembling products on his ping pong table. His sons Michael and Bill joined the business in 1987 and 1989, respectively.

In 1989, Static Control branched out into providing other products, including those used by the toner cartridge remanufacturing industry. The toner cartridge remanufacturing business at the time was in its infancy. Ed recognized that this new industry needed quality manufactured products if it were to continue to thrive and grow. Over time, Static Control grew into the largest manufacturer of aftermarket imaging systems. Today Static Control manufactures virtually all the components needed to remanufacture a high quality toner or ink cartridge, from the toner to complex electronic circuits. Ed’s vertical integration approach meant that products were designed, engineered and manufactured in-house to ensure the highest quality products for customers around the world. Ed knew the importance of a talented team and early on assembled great talent in many disciplines, from engineering to sales and beyond, in order to continue to advance the cartridge remanufacturing industry.

Ed was diagnosed with cancer in 2012. He had earlier turned over day-to-day management of the business to others but remained vitally interested in Static Control and the industry as a whole until his passing. Ed died on November 4, 2013.

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