Volume 36, Issue 7, July 2001
The Most Influential Companies in the
Glass and Metal Industry
"The effect a person or thing has on another."
by Tara Taffera
This is how the Oxford Dictionary defines influence. But, what's even more interesting than the definition, are the word's synonyms—effect, impact, impression, power, force, pressure, leverage, clout, change, transform, drive, force, urge, persuade, pressure, motivate and impress—all powerful words used to describe the word influence. Other synonyms, such as manipulate and pressure, do not come with the same positive connotations, but these may also be used to describe a company or person who is deemed influential.
Keep these words in mind as you read the following pages, USGlass magazine's biannual Most Influential Companies in the Glass and Metal Industry. Do each of these words apply across the board to all of the companies? Do you have to be a large company to be influential? Do you have to be aware of your influence?
The answers to all of the above are no. In fact, some people on our list admit they don't view themselves as influential. In regard to size, some of the companies are the largest in the industry. But, there are smaller glass shops on the list as well, proving that bigger isn't always better. When asked what makes their companies influential, some simply mentioned their size. For some, that is enough to make them influential. But others on the list cite qualities such as their belief in God and their customer-oriented focus that makes them influential. Whatever it is, all companies named, and the people who work for them, have a special quality that allowed them to make it into these pages.
This year's most influential list excludes those in the auto glass industry since auto glass is now covered in our sister publication, AGRR. The companies who were chosen were sent a form, which they were asked to complete. A few companies opted not to participate so they were left off the list but overall, the responses came flooding in.
Following the company name and location, there are a few pieces of information. The first relates to whether the company is public or private; the second to the number of years in business; the third to the number of employees; and the fourth to annual sales. There are a few abbreviations to keep in mind when looking through the entries: CEO—chief executive officer; CFO—chief financial officer; CIO—chief information officer; COO—chief operating officer; VP—vice president; EVP—executive vice president; GM—general manager.
A-1 Glass, Beaumont, Texas
Private; 35 years; 20 employees; $2 million.
Provides auto, residential and commercial glass services.
Lou Green, president; Greg Green, VP.
Why influential: I don't know how "influential" we are but we have been involved with our industry on a national level, which has helped raise the level of awareness of both problems and opportunities facing our industry.
Biggest achievement: Remaining competitive without sacrificing quality in the industry that bears little resemblance to the same industry of ten to 15 years ago.
Next milestone: Thirty-five more years.
AFG Industries, Kingsport, Tenn.
Private; 23 years; 6,000 employees; $1.2 billion.
Primary glass manufacturer with float and pattern capabilities, two coating facilities and 54 insulating, distribution and fabrication facilities in the United States and Canada.
D. Roger Kennedy, president; Fred Wallin, VP sales and marketing; John Litzinger, EVP.
Why influential: AFG provides the finest customer service and offers the broadest product line in the industry. Our customers are encouraged to work with very few individuals to meet all of their glass requirements.
Biggest achievement: Our recent advances in coating technology have allowed the company to offer the broadest range of products in the glass industry and our eBusiness services are unequaled. Customers can order and release glass and access their transactional data from any Internet-connected computer.
Next milestone: Creating technological advances for glass consumers. We expect to be known as the most technically-advanced glass manufacturer, with old fashioned, one-on-one customer service available.
AFGD Glass, Atlanta, Ga.
Private; 18 years; 2,022 employees: $300 million.
Manufactures, fabricates and distributes commercial and residential glass products ranging from raw product to laminated, tempered, insulating, coated, edged, silk screened, gas-filled and mirror.
John Stilwell, president; John Drometer, VP/finance; Brian Martineau, VP/sales and marketing; Jim Brooks, VP/operations; Paul Fitzgerald, VP/manufacturing, Larry Blevins, VP/human resources; Mike Hayward, CIO.
Why influential: Our ingredients. Every employee of AFGD is unique and considered our most valuable strategic resource. The way that we do business; our commitment to ourselves, customers and suppliers; our collective capabilities and our inspirations enable us to carry out a strategy that is rooted in a deep understanding of what our current customers and potential customers value. As a result, we are able to provide solutions that are tailor-made and innovative. Further, we have more than 180 sales consultants (inside and in the field) who are influencing the buying decisions of architects, engineers and contractors daily and promoting the expanded use of glass.
Biggest achievement: Our managed growth over the last 20 years to more than 2,022 employees and 50 locations throughout North America. Since 1983, AFGD has expanded from 400 employees in nine
Next milestone: To become recognized as the "best company to work for and partner with in the industry." We are committed to the continuous growth and development of our employees, customers and suppliers.
Apogee Enterprises Inc., Minneapolis
Public; 52 years; 5,900 employees; $860 million.
Architectural products and services segment designs and engineers, fabricates and installs the walls of glass and windows used in commercial buildings.
Russell Huffer, president; Joseph Deckman and Larry Stordahl, EVPs; Michael Clauer, CFO.
Why influential: Sets standards for architectural products and services.
Biggest achievement: Leadership in industries served (product and technical). Also set new standards in the industries we serve through the value we bring to glass products and services.
Next milestone: Double in size.
Arch Aluminum, Tamarac, Fla.
Private; 23 years; 1,400 employees; $175 million.
Family business, which services the flat glass, mirror, laminated and architectural aluminum industries.
Robert Silverstein, chairman; Leon Silverstein, president and CEO; Tony Clark, COO.
Why influential: Our growth and the opinions of those watching that growth probably account for the perception that we are influential. We service so many different markets with our product line that we likely do have a little
Biggest achievement: Staying independent and privately-owned. Also keeping our original, small, family-owned culture as we grew into a national position.
Next milestone: Making sure that small company culture survives as company's growth continues. We hope to avoid outside influences to that culture.
Architectural Skylight Company Inc., Waterboro, Maine
Private; 11 years; 60 employees.
Designs, engineers, manufactures and installs high-performance custom skylight structures and sloped glazing systems, and also fabricates curtainwall systems. Our sister company, E-Skylight.com, is an Internet-based company that allows the Web user to design, price and order custom skylights online.
Adrian J. Ayotte, P.E., president; Leon B. Murray, P.E., VP/engineering; Kevin B. Reilley, VP/manufacturing; Francis J. O'Neill, VP/sales and marketing.
Why influential: As a technological leader, we have created and use an interface between AutoCAD and machine language that is the first of its kind in the industry. Our engineering department is directly linked to our manufacturing equipment, which enables us to work efficiently, ac curately and quickly. It allows us to design and manufacture glass structures that are increasingly complex with exceptional performance results. As a result of our capability, we are influencing the way buildings are designed. Glass is being used in ways that were not deemed possible just a short time ago.
Biggest achievement: Developing and implementing the technology mentioned above is our biggest achievement—it is the key to our success. Without the technology, we would not be able to be involved with such monumental projects as the new Salt Lake City Library, or the Frank O. Gehry designed MIT State Center. Perhaps the influence of the technology is best manifested in E-Skylight.com.
Next milestone: Double our sales through continued growth, expansion into new markets and/or acquisition by the end of 2003. Apply our developments to related fields, including storefronts, doors and windows and curtainwall.
Dependable Glass Works, Covington, La.
Private; 34 years; 48 employees; more than $4 million.
Specializes in custom glass and mirror beveling, edgework and waterjet cutting. We manufacture hurricane/ impact-resistant glass, bullet-resistant and security glass and decorative laminated glass, including large oversize glass.
J.A. Norman Foxworth, president; Jill Foxworth, VP.
Why influential: Our ability to recognize the needs of our customers and to help them achieve their goals regardless of time-frame and scope of the job.
Biggest achievement: To move and stay ahead of the market by investing back into our company with capital improvements, new equipment and
Next milestone: Expand our lamination department to include additional new products now under development; to provide a complete window and storefront system that has been certified to go with our Safety Plus hurricane/impact-resistant glass.
DuPont, Wilmington, Del.
Public; 199 years; 93,000 employees;
Delivers science-based solutions that make a difference in people's lives in many areas, one of which is home and
Chad Holliday, president/CEO; Richard Goodmanson, EVP; Jack Welch, VP/Glass Laminating Products.
Why influential: DuPont is a world-class materials supplier with a depth of research and development and significant history of invention. DuPont offers the glass industry's broadest family of laminating products including PVB, ionoplast and composites, and makes and markets these products globally.
Biggest achievement: DuPont products continue to improve automotive and architectural glass performance and safety. From the launch of Butacite PVB more than 60 years ago to the development of advanced "SentryGlas" interlayers and composites, to sponsorship of the Benedictus Awards®, DuPont is recognized as a leading glass industry innovator.
Next milestone: Celebrating our 200th year of science and innovation in 2002.
EFCO Corp, Monett, Mo.
Private; 44 years; 2,000 employees; $225 million.
Provides architectural/commercial windows, doors, storefront and curtainwall systems.
Chris Fuldner, CEO/president; Mike Harmon, EVP; Jay Triplett, VP/manufacturing; Mark Kaiser, VP/engineering.
Why influential: We have the most complete line of commercial fenestration products and service in the industry.
Biggest achievement: Growth from $5 million in annual dividends in 1980 to $220 million today.
Next milestone: Add a third major manufacturing facility in the United States.
Fleetwood Windows and Doors, Corona, Calif.
Private; 41 years; 130 employees; $18 million.
Provides high-performing windows and sliding doors for luxury homes and high-rise projects, specializing in oversize exterior rated products and multi-slide doors.
V. Glenn McCoy, president; Mark S. McCoy, sales; Mitch McCoy, production; Mary Costera, finance.
Why influential: Our vision for success is based upon our belief that God's direction is the way to live a purposed and fulfilling life. If we operate our business on these principals we think our suppliers and customers will help us be successful.
Biggest achievement: Keeping customers happy in spite of the daily communication and product issues that arise.
Next milestone: Increasing our customer base without compromising the current base.
Floral Glass & Mirrors, Hauppauge, N.Y.
Private; 50 years; 270 employees.
Manufactures insulating glass, tempered glass, multi-ply laminated glass, architectural doors, custom edgework and distributes flat glass.
Chuck Kaplanek, president; Paul Bieber, VP; Stan Lane, CFO; Steve Brenner, VP/sales.
Why influential: Leadership in oversize glass manufacturing in tempering, laminating and insulating glass; The market leader in architectural glass in the largest market in the United States—the New York metropolitan area; Pioneering work in energy-saving architectural warm-edge IG with the TPS system.
Biggest achievement: Successfully passing into three generations of family ownership and continuously providing employment and benefits for hundreds of families.
Next milestone: Helping to educate our industry and the consumer on warm-edge insulating glass and the differences in overall IG U-value and the historic center of glass U-value.
Glass Doctor, Waco, Texas
Public; 3 years; 9 employees; $43,797,299 in 2000.
Franchiser for the auto, home and business replacement glass industry.
Robert Tunmire, president; Greg Holden, VP.
Why influential: We provide a business system to help independent glass companies grow and become more profitable.
Biggest achievement: Tripled the size of the company within three years and helped independent glass shop owners.
Next milestone: One hundred franchisees and 100 locations by the end of the year.
GlassLock, San Jose, Calif.
Private; 7 years; 10 employees; more than $3 million.
Offers a number of glass hazard mitigation retrofit products—blast, windstorm, seismic and forced entry.
Scott Haddock, president; Vadin Gazaway, VP; Alan Gazaway, GM.
Why influential: GlassLock was the first company in the private sector to test with large-scale bomb blast to the General Services Administration criteria to prove retrofit fill products and attachments can reduce glass hazards in a bomb blast.
Biggest achievement: We have been granted several patents for our glass retention products.
Next milestone: GlassLock has a number of systems in development and is looking forward to bringing new and innovative ideas to the marketplace.
Glasslam NGI Inc., Pompano Beach, Fla.
Private; 18 years; 10 employees; $5 million.
Manufactures and develops polymers systems for the laminated and decorative glass industries.
Steve Howes, president; Violet Howes, VP; Diane Inderlin, CFO; John Bush, GM; Flavio Schonholz, marketing director.
Why influential: We are constantly developing new products and processes for the laminated glass and related industries.
Biggest achievement: Development of Bevelpane decorative doorlites.
Next milestone: Acceptance of hurricane impact-resistant glass in all hurricane prone areas.
Glass Wholesalers, Houston
Private; 24 years; 175 employees.
Fabricators/distributors of glass and aluminum-related products for glass shops and original equipment manufacturers.
Bob Lawrence, president; John Screnci, EVP.
Why influential: We try very hard to satisfy the customer's desire for quality, service and intellectual support, and to intimately involve employees and vendors in the satisfaction of those customers and their customers. We demand that the above is accomplished with integrity, and we fully realize that this partnership among manufacturer/fabricator/distributor/employee and customer must include a reasonable margin of profit for all if we are to maintain a quality relationship. Everyone responds to this formula. It is the only way to do business; this is why I feel our company is
Biggest achievement: Providing a secure future and quality benefits for 175 employees and their families while achieving goals set in our business plan is our most important accomplishment … This is the greatest and most important achievement a company and its management could possibly have, and it will ultimately become a great guide to success.
Next milestone: Last time I shared our plan for a tempering furnace in Houston (Houston had only one furnace two years ago), everyone else thought "what a great idea"… and within one year there were five in Houston. Then another two furnaces moved into the Dallas area. Neither Houston nor the State of Texas can support that kind of additional capacity, and already a fabricator in Dallas has become the first of several probable casualties. Nope, forgive me, but I'll not make that mistake again!
Goldray Inc., Calgary, Alberta Canada
Public; 16 years; 120 employees; $18 million in 2001.
Provides specialty glass products to the construction and manufacturing
Greg Saroka, president; Bill Harrison, VP/finance; Catherine Saroka, VP/operations; Les Hoberg, VP/sales and marketing.
Why influential: Goldray's influence in the glass industry starts at the design stage. We work to increase the scope of the glazing contractor's portion of a construction project by increasing the number of areas in which glass is used. By replacing more traditional building materials with our Simulated Surface Glass, building owners have the opportunity to save money, increase design flexibility and receive a low cost, high-durability product. More important, the glass industry can supply glass wall coverings, floor treads and ceiling tiles, as well as work surfaces, sun shades and many other products seldom before considered to glass applications.
Biggest achievement: Goldray has seen 10,500-percent growth since the company's inception in 1986. We have grown from a small local company to an internationally recognized global supplier to the construction and manufacturing industries.
Next milestone: Release of our new products for 2002. Our new product line will make it possible for every North American glass company to market and benefit from the solid surface building materials produced by Goldray. Our strategy includes not only expanding the market for our own unique products, but also the potential market of every glass company in North America.
Guardian Industries, Auburn Hills, Mich.
Private; 69 years; 18,000 employees, multi-billion.
Manufacturer, fabricator and distributor of flat glass, automotive glass, fiberglass and building material products.
William Davidson, Russell Ebeid, Oscar Feldman and Ralph Gerson, board of
Why influential: Our direct, independent and efficient approach to the marketplace.
Biggest achievement: Sustaining profitable growth based upon our core values and the strength of our international cultural diversity.
Next milestone: To become a technological leader in our respective industries.
Haley-Greer Inc., Dallas, Texas
23 years; 190 employees; $35-50 million.
Provides management and installation of major curtainwall projects for both new and retro buildings.
Donald E. Haley, president; Mark Hogan, Louie Duncan and Letitia Haley-Barker, VPs.
Why influential: We are able to bond, finance, manage and install major projects in a quality manner. We employ high integrity with both our customers and
Biggest achievement: Along with staying in business for 23 years, successful completion of major projects such as the restoration of the Houston Power and Light Building and management and installation of the Enron Center in Houston.
Next milestone: Do an annual profitable volume in excess of $50 million.
Interpane Glass Company, Clinton, N.C.
Private; 29 years; 1,200 employees; $275 million in 2000.
Thomas Koehler, managing director; Frank Forgione, national sales manager.
Manufacturer of architectural high-performance glass products including coated, insulating, laminated, silk-screened and roll-coated glass.
Why influential: We are one of the few fully-integrated and dedicated suppliers of architectural, high-performance glass products in the United States with global sales and a worldwide presence of production facilities through the Interpane companies in Europe.
Biggest achievement: We developed the first marketable high-performance silver low-E coatings. Also, we successfully consolidated high-performance coatings from two different types of coaters thereby offering one of the widest variety of high-performance coatings in the United States.
Next milestone: Reduce high carbon dioxide emissions and high-energy prices through the development and the marketing of low-E and other high-performance coatings. Our vision is to help save energy, protect the climate and reduce utility costs through the application of high-performance coatings. Our aim is to promote the usage of high-performance coatings in all new commercial buildings applications (100 percent).
Kara & Karas Glass Company Inc., Boston
Private; 78 years; more than 100 employees; $40 million.
Full-service, wholesale distributor as well as a large commercial contract glazier.
Joseph Karas, president; Jay Argus, VP/contract division; Dick Scaven, VP/distribution sales.
Why influential: We have maintained our position as the dominant distributor in the New England marketplace for more than 75 years. Our contract division has grown to be one of the largest contract glaziers in the United States working on world-class jobs, primarily in the Boston area.
Biggest achievement: Surviving.
Next milestone: One hundred years in business in 2024.
Kawneer Company Inc., Norcross, Ga.
Public; 95 years; approximately 3,000 employees.
International manufacturer of architectural products and systems for the commercial construction industry. Product offerings include entrances, framing, curtainwall and windows.
William (Bill) O. Cralley, president; Robert (Bob) G. Leyland, VP/sales and marketing; Rick Scherer, VP/finance; Bob Adams, VP/human resources; Tom Leach, VP/customer services.
Why influential: Dedicated and experienced employees; strong, highly capable customer base; broad, highly-engineered product line; well-known and recognized brand in the market; we're part of the world's largest aluminum company—Alcoa.
Biggest achievement: We have established and sustained a position of industry leadership over many decades. Our recent reengineering efforts are enabling us to better meet the needs of our customers and employees in today's changing world.
Next milestone: Make Kawneer the preferred architectural products and systems supplier for all of our customers, as well as to be the preferred employer in the industry.
Major Industries, Wausau, Wis.
Private; 21 years; 108 employees; more than $15 million.
Manufactures a full line of custom-engineered skylights and translucent curtainwall, using glass, acrylic, polycarbonate curtainwall, or energy-efficient insulating translucent glazing panels.
Wayne Toenjes; president; Sandy Zarda, VP.
Why influential: Major is the second oldest company in the translucent glazing panel industry. Our cost-effective daylighting solutions are engineered to virtually eliminate leaks. On-time delivery and competent technical customer support keep our customers coming back.
Biggest achievement: Reaching our five-year goal in 2000 by obtaining a 500-percent increase of repeat customers.
Next milestone: Five-year strategic plan calls for Major Industries to reach $30 million in sales with a permanent workforce of 225 employees.
McGrory Glass Inc., Aston, Pa.
Private; 18 years; 30 employees.
Distributor and fabricator of specialty glass products. Products include textured and patterned glass; restoration-type glass; fire-rated glass; anti-reflective glass; building panels and acid-etched glass products.
Mary R. McGrory, president; John J. McGrory, CEO.
Why influential: An extremely loyal customer base, which values the importance of traditional glass products as well as "new generation" products. Our technical support staff supports our customers in a rapidly changing industry.
Biggest achievement: Offering products and services which result in the success of our customers.
Next milestone: Keep doing the little things right, the milestones will take care of themselves.
Mitchell International, San Diego
Private; 74 years; 650 employees.
Provides electronic commerce communication support.
Jim Lindner, president; Paul Rodwick, EVP; Catherine Howard, VP/GM, NAGS; James (Bud) Oliver, director of operations, NAGS; Vivek Vasuda, director of glass e-business.
Why influential: We are the only provider of industry standard database of flat glass information and benchmark pricing.
Biggest achievement: Providing Internet access for industry participants through open systems.
Next milestone: Global expansion.
MTH Industries, Chicago
Private; 115 years; 125 employees; $24-25 million.
Provides glazing and architectural metals.
Lyle R. Hill, president; Michael Swanberg, Louis Nutini, Lou Cerny, VPs; Dennis Koziol, CFO.
Why influential: Reputation for quality; integrity; breadth of experience; remarkably-talented people.
Biggest achievement: Surviving for 115 years as a privately-owned business.
Next milestone: Survive for another 115 years.
Nashville Tempered Glass, Nashville
Private; 15 years; more than 100 employees; more than $10 million.
Flat and bent glass fabricator for the marine, construction, agriculture, furniture, commercial products and window and door industries.
Brett Jacobson, president; Mike Hobbs, CEO.
Why influential: Technical and manufacturing expertise in large complex curvature bent products, as well as value-added services such as short-lead times and just-in-time delivery.
Biggest achievement: Changing the perception of our company in the marketplace one customer at a time so we can be their partner and help solve their problems.
Next milestone: Continue to improve our customer ratings to a perfect score in areas of cost, schedule performance, quality and service.
Norshield Securtiy Products, Montgomery, Ala.
Public; 22 years; 175 employees; $24 million.
Manufacturer of certified bullet-, blast- and attack-resistant products.
C. David Wachs, president; C. Craig Washing, VP; Barry White, manager, sales and estimating.
Why influential: Norshield was formed in 1979 to assist the U.S. Department of State in upgrading security at U.S. embassies throughout the world. For the last 22 years, we have expanded the product line to include steel, aluminum, glass and fiberglass to provide physical protection to governments, companies and individuals.
Biggest achievement: Growing the business from the roots of a glass shop with few individuals to 175 employees. Norshield has the reputation throughout the world of the first to call for physical security. Many of the projects we have completed carry classification designations, so many high-profile buildings cannot be discussed. One hundred percent of what we supply is security products only.
Next milestone: At present, 35 percent of Norshield's business goes through the traditional glass industry (it was virtually zero eight years ago). We want to increase that to more than 50 percent. We will expand our product line and add acquisitions to accomplish that goal. We also want to become the security partner to the industry as more glass shops get security project opportunities.
O'Keeffe's Inc., San Francisco
Private; 62 years.
Provides skylights and fire-rated glazing products.
William F. O'Keeffe, president.
Why influential: Our involvement in making the use of glass in fire-rated applications safe to the public when human impact could be involved.
Biggest achievement: We were the first company to use extruded aluminum for skylights and the first to bring alternate fire-rated clear glazing for use in the United States.
Next milestone: See the banning of wired-glass usage in our industry.
Oldcastle Glass Group, Santa Monica, Calif.
Public; 14 years; 3,000 employees; approximately
Provides extensive glass products and fabrication services.
Jim Avanzini, group president; Roy Orr, group president; Dominic Maggiano, CFO.
Why influential: The responsiveness and customer-driven focus of local, autonomous management teams held accountable—and compensated—for their ability to satisfy the needs of their customers.
Biggest achievement: Successfully integrating more than 15 acquisitions to create North America's largest independent glass fabricator with exceptional employees.
Next milestone: Expanding internationally.
Palmer Mirro-Mastics, Louisville, Ky.
Private; 90 years; 18 employees.
Manufacturer of mirror adhesives.
S.W. Palmer-Ball, president; Lawrence B. Palmer-Ball II, VP; Virginia Brown, treasurer.
Why influential: We were the pioneer in the manufacture of glass and mirror adhesives. Our strength is our longevity and ability to address the needs of the market through the development of new products, instruction on installation applications and technical services.
Biggest achievement: Product development. From the time we entered the adhesives business in the 1930s to the introduction of Mirro-Mastic in 1933 to the more recent development of Super Set and Qwikset, our biggest achievement has been our products. The superior quality of our products is the backbone of our business.
Next milestone: Further product development as the needs of the market require it. Also working to keep abreast of the most efficient way to get information about our products, and how best to use them, to our customers.
Pilkington North America, Toledo Ohio
Private; 158 years; 5,500 employees: $4.1 billion (world wide).
Primary glass manufacturer.
Richard Karcher, president/Building Products North America.
PPG Industries, Pittsburgh
Public; 118 years; 35,600 employees; $8.6 billion in 2000 as a corporation; $2,351 billion glass sales in 2000.
Supplier of glass, coatings, fiber glass and chemicals.
Raymond W. LeBoeuf, chairman and CEO; Frank A. Archinaco, EVP/glass and chemicals; Barry J. McGee, VP/flat glass.
Why influential: PPG was founded on its technical expertise, financial acumen and marketing abilities, traits that have remained at the core of our business throughout our 118-year history. Our longstanding integrity and customer commitment afford us a position of influence that we take seriously. We are willing and able to tackle the tough issues and be a leader. For example, we are leading the effort today for government-energy incentives that recognize the energy-saving performance and value of glass in reducing our reliance on fossil fuel.
Biggest achievement: Being in business for 118 years indicated our ability to continue to meet the needs of our customers, and we have made increasing shareholder payments for 31 consecutive years, both accomplishments of which we are proud. It could be argued that our biggest achievement has been our ability to continue to provide this industry with a succession of new glass processes and product breakthroughs: the first successful flat glass facility in North America, the continuous ribbon flat glass process, Solex glass, double-glazed IG units, Starphire and Azurlie glasses and Intercept IG technology, to name some of them.
Next milestone: Continuing to serve our customers with new value-added products and services, and providing the next technological breakthrough while maintaining industry leadership in production efficiency.
Queen City Glass, Manchester, N.H.
Private; 10 years; 13 employees; $1.5
Full-service glass shop serving the auto, commercial and residential markets.
Jeannine Aubin, owner.
Why influential: I really don't consider us influential. We work hard to serve our customers. We are a small family company.
Biggest achievement: We try to keep up with the recent technology, offer newest products and keep a small business atmosphere.
REBCO Inc., Paterson, N..J.
Private; 47 years; 56 employees.
Manufacturer of commercial entrances and commercial windows and provides aluminum extrusions to the trade.
Peter Bonzani, president; Steve Grof-Tisza and Tony Stolarz, VPs.
Why influential: Our established reputation for quality is probably our most important asset. After nearly 50 years in the industry, our products are known and respected for standing up to the tough pedestrian traffic and weather varieties that the metropolitan New York area is famous for. We have always taken pride in our ability to customize our products to meet our clients exacting specifications with custom colors, sizes, grids and other detailing. Our skilled craftsmen and women with their keen ability to fabricate to your needs will make your projects notable.
Biggest achievement: We can look back at many special projects with pride. Working on the facilities at the Statue of Liberty, several athletic stadiums, large office complexes, and shopping areas have all been interesting, but our biggest achievement has more to do with our longevity. We are blessed with wonderful long-term relationships with our clients that have allowed us to prosper and grow. The loyalty of its customers is the most important thing any company can strive toward.
Next milestone: Celebrating our 50th anniversary in business. We see this not only as a time to look back on our successes, but to look forward. With the many changes in our industry since the 1950s, it's a real challenge to anticipate what changes will occur in our industry in the next 50 years. It's a time to reflect on the past, to celebrate the present, and to harness our imaginations to move our company through the next half century.
Saint Gobain Corp. Paris, France
Public; 335 years; 160,000 employees; $24 billion.
Flat glass division produces, processes and markets glass products.
Jean-Louis Beffa, chairman and CEO.
SIGCO, Portland, Maine
Private; 16 years; 55 employees.
Distributes flat glass and sundry products, manufactures insulating glass and distributes and fabricates architectural metal.
David McElhinny, president; Steven Freeman, VP.
Why influential: We provide the highest quality products, prompt flexible service and delivery and financial strength. We demonstrate honesty and integrity in dealings with customers, suppliers and employees. We are very supportive of our industry and marketplace. We are a fun company to work with.
Biggest achievement: Uninterrupted growth for 16 years while maintaining quality and performance excellence. This despite new ownership and an acquisition within the last three years.
Next milestone: To always improve the consistency of our products, quality and on-time deliveries; Achieve a perfect safety record; Have all of our customers, employees and suppliers gratified to be involved with SIGCO.
Solutia Inc., St. Louis
Public; 4 years; 11,000 employees, $3.2 billion in 2000.
For the glass segment, Solutia manufactures performance films for laminated safety glass and after-market applications, as well as resins and additives for high-value coatings.
John C. Hunter, president; Victoria M. Holt, VP/GM, performance films.
Why influential: Solutia is the market leader in delivering polyvinyl butyral (PVB) solutions to the global glazing market. Through our decades of leadership, we have developed an unparalleled ability to meet our customer's needs, and to understand downstream glazing customer desires for new products and services.
Biggest achievement: To maintain our leadership position in an extremely competitive market through our continued excellence in product and service offerings.
Next milestone: To achieve greater understanding of the entire glazing value chain, so we can develop and commercialize new produ cts and services faster to meet customer and end user needs.
Sommer & Maca Industries Inc., Cicero, Ill.
Private; 81 years; 210 employees.
Manufacturer of glass working machinery (standard or special), and a distributor of various glazing tools and hardware.
Richard J. Carroll, president, James P. Johnson, VP, Alan L. Maca, CEO.
Why influential: With the multiplicity of our manufacturing division and a major distributor of glazing supplies, we have ability to service the individual glass shop or major corporations.
Biggest achievement: We are one of the first companies that brought automation to the glass fabricators.
Next milestone: Increasing the scope of automation for glass finishing and expanding the product lines.
Thad Ziegler Glass Ltd., San Antonio
Limited partnership; 108 years; 150 employees; $11 million.
Provides wholesale, retail, auto glass, mirror and shower enclosure glass services. The company also serves as glass and glazing subcontractors.
T had W. Ziegler, president; Thad M. Ziegler, chairman; Thad C. Ziegler, COO.
Why influential: We are the oldest family owned and operated glass company in the United States. We have survived over the 108 years that we have been in business because of our diversity and our overall policy of fairness and honesty to our customers, vendors and employees. Our diversity has been invaluable especially during slow periods where we depended on wholesale, for example, when contract glazing was slow. We also pride ourselves when it comes to our payables. We have always insisted that we take cash discounts and never be past due with a vendor. This, along with our fairness and honesty policy, has made our company very popular with most of our vendors.
Biggest achievement: Surviving and being successful for 108 years through five generations of Zieglers. Maintaining a extremely conscientious, talented and honest team of employees.
Next milestone: To expand and improve our wholesale delivery routes; to expand and enlarge our insulating glass department; to keep growing in all facets of our business so our company can still be around on our 200th anniversary with our ninth or tenth generation of Zieglers running the company.
Tubelite Inc., Reed City, Mich.
Private; 56 years; 200 employees; more than $40 million.
Manufactures commercial architectural aluminum products such as storefronts, entrances and curtainwall for the glass and glazing industry.
Ken Werbowy, president; Steve Green, director of sales and marketing.
Why influential: Tubelite is dedicated to contributing more than just quality product to each project in which it is involved. The company's representatives and technical support staff help architects and glaziers meet challenges and develop better business strategies. Our website is recognized for its innovative approach to accommodating the needs of architects, specifiers and glaziers through such practices as allowing architects and specifiers to access nearly all the information they need, including CAD details. Tubelite influences the industry through innovation, reliability and a commitment to quality and continuous improvement. It provides dependability today, for excellence tomorrow.
Biggest achievement: To avail and establish Tubelite as a mentor to the glazing industry. The company offers its expertise—not merely in the form of quality products—but also as a trusted advisor for architects, glaziers and other key personnel in the industry.
Next milestone: To continue building upon our reputation for dependability and to expand the facilitation of growth, education and communication among all professionals associated with the industry.
UCB Chemicals Corporation/Uvecryl Coatings Division, Smyrna, Ga.
Private; 20 years; 230 employees; more than $190 million.
International company developing and producing a wide range of chemicals focusing on a variety of industries and applications. Uvecryl Coatings division focuses heavily on the laminated glass industries by providing Uvekol® S resin which is available to laminated glass manufacturers.
Rich Kemmerer, president; Bill Bayer, VP.
Why influential: UCB has established itself as a world leader in the development of UV and EB curable technology which has proven to be the easiest and most efficient resin curing process for the glass laminating industry.
Biggest achievement: Laminated glass produced with UCB's Uvekol®S has recently been awarded Dade County Florida certification. This is perhaps the toughest building code in the country based on the severe weather and hurricane conditions so common to this market. This certification allows manufacturers of laminated glass anywhere to duplicate this performance when using Uvekol® S resin in their manufacturing process.
Next milestone: Continue developing Uvekol® S for bullet- and bomb blast-resistant applications as well as applying this technology to a variety of architectural uses where high strength, versatility and optical clarity are required.
UltraGlas Inc., Chatsworth, Calif.
Private; 13 years; 16 employees.
Manufactures UltraGlas®, heat-sculpted architectural glass.
President and CEO, Jane A. Skeeter; Dale Cheney, VP production; Victoria Ocampo, comptroller.
Why influential: UltraGlas pioneered heat-sculpted glass in the United States introducing UltraGlas nationally in 1988. Since then, the company has become firmly established as an industry leader.
Biggest achievement: Establishing UltraGlas as the architectural glass of choice when a truly indelible experience is desired for interior or exterior applications. Through utilizing a combination of cutting-edge technology, an artisan's attention to detail and an unflagging commitment to quality, we have built a reputation as designer-producer of the most innovative heat-sculpted glass installations.
Next milestone: Expanding the markets for UltraGlas beyond traditional architectural glass applications, such as flooring, decorative tiles, etc.
United Glass Corp., Kingsport, Tenn.
Private; 2 years; 1,400 employees;
Provides fabricated flat glass.
Jim Bradford, president and CEO; Larry O'Connell, chairman; Lanny Dickmann, chief manager of operations; Mike Kelsey, chief administrative officer; Jack Deyo, East Coast Operations president; Nick Sciola, West Coast Operations president.
Why influential: Size, unique grouping of products, locations and dedication to being one team, achieving our goals, focus on customer service.
Biggest achievement: Molding UGC into a single national company.
Next milestone: Meeting our internal profit objectives, making UGC the best in the business.
United States Aluminum, Waxahachie, Texas
Public; 36 years; 500 employees.
Manufactures aluminum entrances, storefronts, window walls, curtainwalls and slope glazed systems.
Dave Trinnen, senior VP,/International Aluminum; Doug Ellerbrock, VP/U.S. Aluminum.
Why influential: Being in the top five architectural aluminum manufacturers in North America.
Biggest achievement: Innovation in the design of storefronts and window wall products.
Next milestone: Gain additional market share in North America.
Vesuvius McDanel, Beaver Falls, Pa.
Public; 92 years; 150 employees; $20 million
Manufacturer of advanced refractories and technical ceramics. Provides Zyarock® fused silica and Zyalite™ non-asbestos fiber refractories to the glass industry.
Gary Novak, president Vesuvius Glass Group, North America; Les Crittenden, GM; Ren Bartoe, Zyarock® product line manager; Dwayne Bucko, Zyalite™ product line manager; Chris Rogowski, Zyalox® product line manager.
Why influential: As part of the Vesuvius Glass Group, Vesuvius McDanel has the resources and global presence to provide direct technical service and support to the glass industry. Well-known for precision Zyarock® fused silica tempering rollers, the company also works in partnership with the glass industry providing complimentary services including customized seminars, laboratory analysis of glass surface conditions and a team of application engineers to assist the trade. Vesuvius is also very active in working committees of Glass Assoc-iations in North America, Europe and Japan.
Biggest achievement: From a product offering perspective, Vesuvius has developed the widest range and largest product capability for float lehr and glass tempering rollers. Rollers are produced from .500- to 12.000 inches in diameter and up to 20 feet long. From the corporate view, developing synergy among many formerly independent operations to promote a consistent and global partnership philosophy with our glass customers counts amongst our biggest achievements.
Next milestone: Vesuvius is on track to develop a fully-integrated glass group to manufacture and supply refractory products from the batch house to the finished product. Currently the Glass Group includes Vesuvius McDanel, Vesuvius France, Vesuvius Monofrax, Vesuvius VGT-Dyko and Vesuvius Premier.
Vistawall Group, Terrell, Texas
Public; 39 years; 1,700 employees; more than $200 million.
Manufacturer of quality, high-performance architectural products for the commercial building industry including entrances, storefronts, curtainwalls, window, skylight and translucent panel system.
Tom Harris, president; Bob Johnson, Peter Haigney, Jim Day, Larry VanGrouw, VPs; Kyle Jones, national sales manager; Jeff Rutledge, Naturalite GM.
Why influential: Vistawall conducts ongoing research and development of products as well as provides superior customer service, including a network of regional service and fabricator centers. We also provide a wide range of services including estimating software, electronic catalogs, a comprehensive website and engineering and project management.
Biggest achievement: In-house capabilities to take a hands-on approach to quality control. Capabilities include engineering, testing, extrusion, anodizing, painting and fabrication. Another achievement is being able to provide a full line of products for the exterior envelope of buildings, and serve as a single-source supplier.
Next milestone: Expanding manufacturing capacity, developing new and
innovative products as well as enhancing existing customer services to provide the best product possible to the commercial construction industry.
Visteon Corp. Dearborn, Mich.
Public; 1 year (spun off from Ford Motor Co. in June 2000); 82,000 employees; $19.5 billion.
Supplier of architectural and flat glass.
Cliff Dawson, director of glass operations.
VVP America Inc., Memphis, Tenn.
Public; more than 100 years; more than 3,000 employees; $545 million.
Provides fabrication, distribution and installation of glass for the construction and automotive markets.
Mark A. Burke, president.
Why influential: We are the largest full-service retail (auto and flat) company in the United States and, excluding primary manufacturers, the third largest glass company in the United States.
Biggest achievement: In the last five years, sales are up more than $230 million while operating profit has nearly doubled.
Next milestone: Double our operating profit in the next five years.
Western Glass Supply, Denver, Col.
14 years; 10 employees.
Stocks and sells tools, equipment and supplies for fabricating, installing and handling glass. Specializes in commercial installation vacuum equipment.
Barbara Mulqueen, president.
Why influential: As very few smaller independent companies are left in the supply business. We encourage competition and offer another source for customers. Having an owner-managed company provides immediate decision-making and quoting.
Biggest achievement: Our ability to grow geographically. Much of our business comes from referrals. It is great to hear someone ten states away tell us that they were referred to us over a company closer to them.
Next milestone: Integrating e-business to serve customers with the latest technology and information while keeping what some would call "old fashion" ways. We are often compared to the "general store" for the friendly way business is done. In our store and on the telephone nationwide, we know customers’ names.
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