Displaying posts tagged with



Were my dad still alive, yesterday would have been his 90th birthday. Though he passed away 13 years ago the day before his birthday, his lessons still teach me things every day. His favorite saying was “just do your best,” though he’d always followed it with a caveat. “If you are sure — really sure — you have done your best, then you should be satisfied,” he’d say. “Because you could not have done any better.” So, you can see why I often focus on that question. Did I do the best I could? If so, I should be at peace. And if not, I need to fix that for… Read More »

Bye Bye Pittsburgh

And now it’s done and the word is out. The deal that sells PPG’s glass business to Vitro has been inked and the details announced. All that waits is the blessing of the regulators and the official closing in a few months. PPG gets $750 million dollars in cash and relief from a business it says is successful, but not strategically compatible with its future. Vitro gets a $1.1 billion business for a good bit less than that, a strengthened foot- and plant-print in North America and a robust and innovative research component. Just two days after the deal was announced, editors Ellen Rogers, Nick St. Denis and I conducted… Read More »

Final Fortnight

The deadline for submitting comments about the proposed life-threatening Addendum ‘am’ to ASHRAE 189.1 is two weeks from today. Your help is needed. It won’t take more than 30 minutes and it could end a dangerous threat to your business. There are few actions you can take that are more important than filing comments against the onerous proposal that threatens reduce the amount of glass that can be used in a building by up to 25 percent. There has been a fair amount of commentary about the proposed Addendum over the past few weeks. It is significant to note that those in this industry of varied, diverse and vocal opinion-givers have… Read More »

BEC ’13 Becomes a Memory

As the Glass Association of North America (GANA ’s) Building Envelope Contractors (BEC) Conference comes to a close, I can’t resist some final thoughts about all that I saw during the past two days. Here’s my top five: There were a ton of glazing contractors here. It was heartwarming, and hopefully a sign of good times to come, to see large numbers of contract glaziers big and small, attend. This is as a great a sign of an industry come back as I have seen thus far. The guys that were here, are here to stay. Thomsen’s speech got great reviews … but. Nearly everyone to whom I spoke about… Read More »

Marking Time

Glasstec, the mother of all glass trade shows starts tomorrow in Düsseldorf, Germany. Just as the first day of school marks an exciting time for school children everywhere, glasstec marks this time for me. And because it’s every other year the changes it heralds are always pronounced. This is my 14th visit to the show. I have attended every show since 1984, save one in the late 1980s. The changes that have occurred during that time have been dramatic. Let’s look at the glass manufacturing industry first. The landscape of the industry was a lot different during that first visit. Oh, the U.S. still had less than 10 primary manufacturers as it does now but look… Read More »

The Big Ohhhhh

Today it’s my turn and I feel the power. People have come to me for help and I want to give it. I like to think it’s in my nature. Trouble is, I have no idea what I am talking about, and I need your help. I am sure you get questions like I do. When people hear you are in the glass business, they immediately assume that you have all the answers … about all types of glass including glass bottles, glass plates, carnival glass (though I know where to go to get answers on that one) … you know what I mean, you get the questions too. I… Read More »

Top Five Trends in Glass at the AIA Show

Never one to write long if I can write short, here are the top five glass trends from the AIA 2012 convention, which just ended Saturday: 1. Dynamic and solar control glass a-go-go:  The primary manufacturers were out in semi-force (no AGC, no Cardinal) touting new and advanced products for solar control and energy efficiency. PPG Industries and Pleotint teamed up to present Suntuitive. It changes shading based on temperature and is easy to install, according to PPG’s Joanne Funyak;  Honeymooners Saint-Gobain and Sage Electrochomic were discussing a future of joint products (though they still had separate booths). Saint-Gobain also displayed electrochromic microlouvers available with both fixed and dynamic daylight control;… Read More »

Primary Colors

No, this one is not about some new glass colors, nor politics. It’s about massive changes in leadership at the top that keep affecting our industry. But change is a constant, right? Especially in the glass industry. I am referring, of course, to the changes in management that have occurred during the last 24 to 36 months among the primary manufacturers. Consider this: Scott Thomsen took over as group vice president for Guardian’s North American flat glass operations on March 1, 2010. He became president of Guardian Glass upon Russ Ebeid’s retirement on September 1 last year. Though Guardian’s plan for and execution of a succession plan has been deliberate… Read More »

Games and Game-Changers

I am writing this on a Sunday night on the road as I flip channels between the Giants-49ers game and “Undercover Boss,” which is featuring Dina Dwyer Owens, the president of Glass Doctor’s parent company, Dwyer Group. Dina was kind enough to give USGNN.com an interview about the show on Friday and I was anxious to see it. So far, the Giants are leading 10-7 and Dina is visiting a Mr. Rooter franchisee in Roswell, Ga. An employee is voicing an opinion that “something shady is going on” because he has had pretty tiny paychecks the last eight weeks – one week he ended up owing $21. Do not worry,… Read More »

This site uses cookies which allow us to give you the best browsing experience possible. Cookies are files stored in your browser and are used by most websites to help personalize your web experience. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please see our Privacy Policy.