Glass Expo Northeast (GENE) ‘22 is in the books. Co-sponsored by USGlass magazine and the Long Island Glass Association, the event attracted nearly 1,500 attendees. USGlass magazine publisher Debra Levy began the second and final day by moderating a panel prompted by two years of COVID crisis and supply chain obstacles.
Take a Seat
Crisis Aftermath – Supply Challenges featured Amber Deimler, vice president of sales for Demountable Concepts Inc./MyGlassTruck; Daniel Plotnick, international and domestic accounts manager for Vitro Architectural Glass; Jeff Wilkins, chief operating officer, AGNORA; and Barry Wood, vice president of marketing and commercial development of Wood’s Powr-Grip. Wilkins kicked off the discussion by detailing how his company has adapted to new trials.
“It’s always been critical for us to interact with our customers,” Wilkins said. “Our facility is part of that interaction. Getting customers up to our facility was the strongest and most valuable marketing tool we had. COVID hits … the first thing we tried to do was figure out how to go virtual. Adam [Mitchell], our marketing manager, was brilliant in that he created a virtual tour.”
Hard Truth about Hardware
Adam Smith and Chance Lloyd of Door Controls USA delved into “The Ins and Outs of Contract and Replacement Hardware” during the following session. They led the mid-morning presentation, which discussed the importance of assisting customers in need with urgency and how affordable hardware assists.
“Pricing and availability—this is a great opportunity for you, the service provider, to stock the material,” Smith said. “When your customer calls and has an emergency, you’re there and have the material on hand. You can provide a reasonable and effective solution to their problem at an affordable price. That makes you invaluable.”
Products, Products, Products
More than 110 companies displayed machinery and equipment, computer software, services and various types of glass on the show floor. Belleville, Mich.’s, Mainstreet Computers, a provider of glass software, custom websites and call center services, used the show to reconnect with a pool of potential clients.
“With COVID crippling things the last couple of years, we’re trying to get in front of everyone and meet the public, so to speak,” said Mark Haeck, sales manager there. “We have a new shower door pricing application we’re showing at this event.”
Haeck said the platform aims “to help glass shops get quick, easy prices in the field [when] selling shower doors.”
Mark Imbrock, co-owner and vice-president at Electronic Design To Market (EDTM), has been to more than four GENE shows. He says attendance is crucial in that it allows in-person service demos.
“We’re showing our full line of test equipment used in the glass and window industry,” he said. “Everything [helping with] identifying glass and window thickness, [recognizing] laminated glass, and measuring glass.”
Mark Kemp, president at Access Door in Keokuk, Iowa, has participated in more than 10 GENE gatherings throughout the years. His business’ display included a lineup of architectural push-pull hardware, including its AA4000 Series (offset ladder pulls) and AA5000 Series (radius pulls).
“We’ve been coming to this show for as long as it’s existed; always a great turnout and customer base,” Kemp said.
Machine and tool supplier Matodi showcased its Cosmos wheel, manufactured by the United Kingdom’s Marrose Abrasives. The wheel is a formulated genuine rubber-based abrasive wheel that offers a high-quality polish and finish at optimal processing speeds. “If we can come here, and get half a dozen to a dozen good leads, that’s what we’re after,” says tooling and consumables manager Mark Truhe.
When asked if the company achieved its objective, Truhe replied, “I believe so, yes.”
Attendees came to learn, but they also connected with fellow industry professionals. A cocktail party, sponsored by the Long Island Glass Association with drinks sponsored by Door Controls, took place on the show floor from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesday. In between discussions, show-goers shared personal goals.
Newark, N.J.’s, C. A. Glass Frameless Shower Door owner Cleidison Aquino sought new machinery during exhibition hours. “[I’m looking] for a polishing machine, tempering machine, and a CNC.”
Michael Ernst, owner of M&M Window and Glass of Manahawkin, N.J., was another regional attendee with similar show aspirations. “I was looking for insulating glass manufacturers … I like the layout they did here. You could go into different rooms—there wasn’t a lot of traffic in between the lanes, and no one was bumping into each other.”
Optimum Window Manufacturing Corp. is headquartered in Ellenville, N.Y. Vice president Candido Perez used GENE as an opportunity to meet in the middle with various vendors, seeking out glass handling equipment.
That’s All, Folks
It has been three years since GENE ‘19, the last variation of an event built on trade shows, educational seminars and technical conferences. The COVID-19 pandemic had forced the event to pause an extra year, and it showed. Attendees were amplified for advancement throughout the gathering. Click here for today’s video report.
Eager for more education? Don’t worry—Glass Expo Rocky Mountain ‘23 is returning to Denver (Aurora), Colo., after three highly-anticipated years, to bring qualified customers and prospects together. Co-sponsored by the Colorado Glazing Contractors Association (CGCA), USGlass magazine, USGNN™ and Architects’ Guide to Glass & Metal, the event provides the architectural glass and metal industry with top-notch education, networking opportunities and a bustling exhibition floor full of the latest products and services.
Click here for event updates as they become available. We’ll see you in the Mile High City!