From the fabricator: Mind numbing

What a slow and boring week... can't believe the lack of news in our world.

If only that was true.

For those of you who follow the news of the industry, this past week the auction for my employer (Vitro America) took place, and it continued to be a surreal story that even Hollywood would write off as "too unbelievable." After an amazingly competitive auction that featured more back and forth than a grand slam tennis final, Sun Capital outlasted the fine folks from Grey Mountain to win. This result will, once again, spur industry change and probable consolidation as there's not a lot of geographic differences between the companies. Now, I can go on and on about this. I think anyone who knows me, knows I am bitterly disappointed (actually mortally depressed is a better term) over the result because of several reasons. The biggest is I really believe what Grey Mountain would have brought to the industry would have been spectacular: breathtaking and groundbreaking plans to operate and innovate. To be a part of that would have been epic. And quite frankly, the momentum that was bubbling up at Vitro before all of this unintended collateral damage junk was thrown at us was significant, and I really wanted to see where it could go. So, that's a big reason for my sadness: never knowing what "could have been" if we got to continue as planned.

Hey that's life right? David threw one heck of a rock, but Goliath has a harder head than anyone can imagine. So for now, we'll see how this progresses. Consolidation in our world has been a fact of life for many years, and things like this are not a surprise. The industry has evolved and will continue to do so until it finds calmer skies. And as for going forward, we'll see how this all hashes out. There are a lot of people that will be affected by this, and we'll join a crowded field of folks from US Aluminum, Zeledyne, etc. who are already out there. As I have railed on here many, many times before, there's a ton of talent out there that can help upgrade and advance revenue generation, and that will surely be the case when all of this comes clear in the coming weeks. I'm sure they'll be much more to say about this in the weeks ahead. As for now, it continues to be just mind numbing for me and many others. 

Read on for links and video of the week...

Max Perilstein is chief marketing officer for Vitro Architectural Products, Memphis. Write him at

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.


Wow!!!  The Glass & Glazing Industry sure 'ain't' what it used to be.  Where will all these unemployed, talented people find jobs?  I was completely floored when US Aluminum closed their doors and now it seems companies are selling off right and left.  Is the economy so bad that principals of these companies feel they can not make it through such rough times and competition OR are they just GREEDY?  This type of news also creates fear all the way down the food chain and companies are scared to death to add any new employees; they run on a shoe-string staff and load down the current employees with more than they can handle to the point that the stress is unbearable... and, these employees can't change jobs because there are not any available... even if there were, the lack of confidence keeps them from moving to a better position.... fear of being the last on the totem pole; last in, first out.I just think it is time that employees are given more credit, treated fairly, given options, etc. because without them, you can get all of the orders you want, all the contracts you can get, all the sales you need, but you can't invoice a dime without their efforts and hard work!  Employers take a chance.... stop sitting there in neutral and hire some of these talented individuals while they are available.  They may bring ideas, customers, and talent to your company that will give it the extra business you need.  GIVE SOMEONE A JOB!!

It will be interesting to see how things shake out in the end.....Although, if we look at history, we know pretty much what is going to happen.  I must say that I saw this coming and a monopoly in the glass industry bodes ill for all of us.