Door and Window Musings
by Tara Taffera
October 9th, 2008

Some Good News from Door and Window Manufacturers

It seems all we’ve reported on recently is news of plant closures, bankruptcy filings and other bad news affecting door and window manufacturers. But while at GlassBuild this week I talked to two door and window manufacturers, who didn’t report of “gloom and doom,” and had a positive attitude, so I wanted to share a few success stories with you.

Geoff Roise, president of Lindsay Windows, with plants in Missouri and Minnesota, admits that it’s a challenging year, and that the sales reps have to work harder than ever for each order.

But Roise is upbeat and is taking steps to invest in new products so when the market picks back up he will be ready.

Jeff Ackerson, president of Vinylite Windows in Fergus Falls, Minn., says the company is very busy, and was at the show to look for more products and options it can add to its windows.

“We’ve added market share,” says Ackerson, who adds that the company has to look at its capacity issues, so like Roise, when the market picks back up again it will be ready for more demand.

Ackerson also says that the smaller manufacturers in some cases have advantages over the larger ones.

“We have to offer what they can’t,” he says.

And in regards to the Energy Star changes that are coming Ackerson says this isn’t as much of a problem for a smaller company like his as it is for many others. And he made a comment that I haven’t heard from many thus far.

“I’m excited about the changes,” he said.

Vinylite only sells into zones four and five, and says the larger manufacturers are more affected by what’s coming.

“This adds more stress for the bigger guys with five zones and will add more cost to their business,” he says.

So hopefully, manufacturers out there who are discouraged by all the dismal news will take encouragement from the stories of those who are successful.

P.S. Jim Plavescky, another one of our DWM bloggers, wrote last week about another success story from a manufacturer. Click here if you missed his blog.

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