Economic Volatility, Supply Chain Disruptions Force Glass Companies to Increase Prices

A combination of inflationary pressures, supply chain disruptions, and material cost increases has forced glass industry companies throughout the globe to increase prices on an array of products.

In June, float glass manufacturer Guardian Glass, based in Auburn Hills, Mich., announced price increases up to 40%. It also said energy, transportation and silver surcharges will undergo monthly adjustments.

“The global situation facing all of us has created unprecedented pressure on our business,” said Rick Zoulek, executive vice president of the Americas, and Lance Altizer, vice president of sales in the Americas, in a joint letter issued June 10. “Therefore, based upon ongoing extreme volatility in raw material costs, supply chain disruptions and current industry conditions, Guardian Glass will implement a price increase effective on all shipments starting June 20, 2022.”

These increases include rate hikes of 40% on all thicknesses of clear float and tinted float along with tempered glass, tempered coated and patterned glass. Mirror prices increased by 25%, and UltraClear, coated SunGuard, coated ClimaGuard, ShowerGuard and laminated glass prices increased by 20%. On June 16, Vitro Architectural Glass, based in Cheswick, Pa., announced it will raise rates by 15-40% depending on the product. Tinted glass and clear glass increased 25% on June 27, 2022, with the remaining percentage applied on August 1, 2022. All other products will be increased on June 27, 2022.

“We continue to ask for your patience regarding deliveries as carrier scarcity and driver and labor shortages prevent us from servicing with our customary standards,” said Mark Seeton, vice president of sales at Vitro. “We commit to redouble the efforts to service our current customer base and fulfill our backlog.”

The price hikes have had an immediate impact on customers. Girard Glass, based in California and owned by Rick Leserman, has been a Guardian Glass customer since 1978. Leserman said he’s had to consider glass purchases on a monthly basis. He added that months might go by without being able to make a purchase, as Guardian Glass has been busy delivering to its contracted customers.

“We’ll have to absorb the increase and pass [it] along the best we can to our customers,” Leserman said.

Ripple Effects

Price increases from the primary glass companies continued to impact much of the industry. Fabricators and other suppliers also announced increases. Architectural glass fabricator Viracon of Owatonna, Minn., said in mid-June that it will increase its prices. The company cites float glass price hikes by major primary glass suppliers within the commercial architectural industry, volatile raw material price increases, supply chain disruptions and economic pressures.

Viracon told customers that it will raise prices on all expired, revised or new quote requests by 5-12%. However, all currently quoted projects will be price protected with receipt of a letter of intent.

Oldcastle BuildingEnvelope® Inc. (OBE), based in Dallas, also alerted customers that it has increased prices on glass products by as much as 40%. The increases went into effect on June 22, 2022. OBE said that all future quotes are valid for 30 days from the time that they are issued. The company also added a surcharge effective July 1, 2022.

The increased cost of glass products also forced Blue Star, which is based in North Brunswick, N.J., to raise its prices starting on June 27, 2022. The company said it “will never increase prices at a flat rate across the board.” However, Blue Star said that it might be unable to meet certain pricing or honor quoted projects.

“We have received a letter from both Vitro and Guardian that there will be a price increase on all glass products being delivered on and after June 20, 2022,” said Alex Oanono, senior vice president of Blue Star. “Depending on the product, the price increases are all between 15-40%. Therefore, we will be increasing our pricing as of Monday, June 27, 2022. Please note (that) this does not mean that we are also increasing 15-40%.”

Glass companies aren’t the only ones raising prices. Kuraray, an interlayer supplier for laminated glass, announced plans to increase the prices of interlayer films for shipments on or after July 1, 2022. Kuraray stated in a press release that cost increases in raw materials, packaging materials, transportation, logistics and energy, are the contributing factors to the rising rates.

– Joshua Huff

Panda Windows & Doors to Distribute Tuval Products in North America

Panda Windows & Doors, a U.S. window and door manufacturer based in Las Vegas, is working with Tuval Minimal of Israel to bring Tuval’s custom steel windows and doors to the North American market.

“While Panda has been designing and fabricating aluminum windows and doors for over 30 years, when we opted to offer steel products to our discerning customers, we turned to the experts,” says Avi Shoshan, Panda Windows and Doors CEO. “Tuval Minimal has been internationally known as the finest designer and supplier of premium steel-framed windows and doors for over 20 years, and we’re excited to introduce them in North America.”

Tuval offers thermally-broken, energy-efficient steel windows and door profiles.

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