Mergers & Acquisitions

AAMA and IGMA Members Vote to Unify and Announce New Name

After more than a year of working through the details of a potential combination of the Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) and the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA), members of both organizations have voted to proceed with the unification process. The organization’s new name will be the Fenestration and Glazing Industry Alliance (FGIA).

The two existing boards will work together to execute the unification implementation steps throughout the remainder of the year. A strategic planning meeting will be held, most likely in October, to blend the vision and priorities for the new organization and to create a three- to five-year strategy. They will also begin brand development work.

“The value of the new organization will be a stronger industry voice, offering members and the industry single-source access to critical information,” says AAMA board chairperson Donnie Hunter, who is the director of global product management for Kawneer. “With knowledgeable professionals from both the fenestration and glass industries, better synergy for the whole finished fenestration product will be available, as well as direct access to Canadian market, codes and regulatory expertise. A combined organization also delivers expanded technical competencies and a broader document base to support more extensive educational opportunities for members.”

IGMA board president Nathalie Thibault, who is architectural sales director and technical advisor for the New England territory at Prelco, adds, “These expanded technical competencies will further support educational opportunities. Plus, members can look forward to enhanced conference programming through an expanded content offering and broader networking opportunities through combined events. There will also be more resources available by harnessing the intellectual knowledge of the associations. A stronger financial position allows for future investments in industry research, technical resources and educational programs, which solidifies the new organization’s position as the single source for the industry moving forward.”

It is unclear when AAMA and IGMA will hold their first meeting under their new name. AAMA’s events schedule includes an upcoming conference from September 30 to October 2 at the Hyatt Regency Lost Pines in Austin, Texas, followed by a conference February 10-13 at the Marriott Harbor Beach in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

BACKGROUND

IGMA and AAMA first announced the possibility of forming a unified organization on June 5, 2018. The discussion came about, in part, due to IGMA executive director Margaret Webb’s impending retirement and the need to establish new management for IGMA. An exploratory team with members from both organizations spent the next year developing a framework for the new organizational structure and seeking member feedback. Leadership of both organizations maintained that preserving their individual brand equity was important, while emphasizing their previous collaborations and synergies.

IGMA and AAMA held a Joint Summer Conference in Victoria, B.C., in June 2019 to give members of both organizations a chance to experience how the other worked. The formal ballots of the AAMA and IGMA memberships were released on July 2, along with the full prospectus outlining the strategy for structuring, operating and branding the new organization, which included adjustments and clarifications to the proposal, based upon member feedback. Voting was held throughout the month of July.

All of AAMA’s category 1 members were eligible to vote while all fenestration and insulating glass manufacturers, as well as suppliers and auditing and testing members were able to vote within IGMA.

Salem Distributing Acquires HHH Tempering

Salem Distributing Co. Inc., headquartered in Winston-Salem, N.C., is positioning itself for growth with its recent acquisition of HHH Tempering Resources Inc.’s assets and the planned U.S. headquarters of its distributor-partner Bovone.

THE HHH ACQUISITION

Machinery provider HHH is now a wholly owned subsidiary of Salem. The company will retain its branding and current leadership, and its headquarters will relocate to Winston-Salem. HHH’s New Kensington, Pa., and Vancouver, Wash., facilities will continue to operate as normal. According to HHH president and CEO Mike Synon, no employees lost their jobs as a result of the acquisition.

With this move, Salem increases its foothold in the flat glass industry it serves as Salem Flat Glass & Mirror and, according to a company statement, the acquisition is a strategic move in Salem’s greater vision of providing the glass industry with innovative solutions and unmatched service.

“Our core focus is to grow and enrich the quality of our employee-owners’ lives while delivering success to our customers. The acquisition of HHH will expand these efforts and help us achieve our goals of growing our company while staying customer focused, accountable and solution oriented,” says Mike Willard, CEO and an owner of Salem. “We believe the great reputation for quality products and technical service that HHH has built is a fit for the Salem family.”

HHH will continue providing glass tempering machinery and technical service. Synon, as well as the rest of the HHH technical and leadership teams, will stay intact. HHH employees will become eligible for employee ownership and will be rolled into Salem’s employee benefit programs.

“We’re excited to join forces and become part of the Salem family,” says Synon. “The entire HHH team looks forward to continue serving the needs of North American fabricators.”

He adds that this acquisition will make Salem and HHH the largest equipment distributer in North America, broadening the product lines for both companies.

“I think it’s a wonderful combination. The two teams each have strengths in different areas, ours being technical and theirs being sales. It’s a great marriage,” says Synon, adding that the companies will enhance each other and train each other’s technicians. “We have an amazing synergy focused on the customer first.”

“This is an incredible opportunity to combine our efforts as well our machine lines, and to further grow our offerings of cutting-edge products, processes and technology,” adds Ann Greco, sales operations manager and an owner of Salem. “It is our goal to provide innovative solutions to existing customers of both companies.”

BOVONE TO OPEN U.S. BRANCH

Italian glass fabrication machinery manufacturer Bovone will open a U.S. branch in 2020 that will be located close to Salem Distributing Co.’s headquarters in North Carolina. The expansion will streamline exchanges between the two companies, according to the company.

Within the product lifecycle management process, this move will make it easier and faster to integrate data for robotics, prepare and install machinery, and service customers in the entire North American market, according to the company.

The expansion is intended to significantly enhance industry 4.0 development, in which Salem has been involved for years, according to the company. Robots and glass processing cells, which have been installed across the U.S., reduce labor costs and risks for fabricators.

“Together on U.S. soil, our companies can more fully leverage and integrate new and existing machinery with enhanced technology. This will benefit our customers in streamlined processes for faster production and little downtime—exactly what they’ve been asking for these past years,” says Willard.

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