Volume 37, Issue 5, May 2002


Columbia Commercial Building Products Purchases Atlas 

Columbia Commercial Building Products is pleased to announce it has purchased certain assets of Atlas Architectural Metal Inc. in March of 2002. Columbia is a supplier of commercial aluminum windows and is located in Rockwall, Texas. Atlas currently has manufacturing operations and a service center in Houston as well as a service center in Dallas. The combined company will continue to be known by both names with Columbia as the managing parent company.

According to Ken Holbrook, national sales manager of Columbia, the principle reason for the purchase was to expand its product line into the areas of storefront, curtainwall and door markets. Holbrook said that other than some management changes, no other changes have occurred, and Columbia is now managing both of Atlas’s facilities.

“Columbia sees the purchase as a stepping stone to further itself wNews Nowithin the commercial aluminum manufacturing industry,” said Holbrook. 

Holbrook will be serving as National Sales Manager for both companies reporting to C. W. Bricker, vice president and general manager of the combined companies. “We intend to provide the same high level of customer service and outstanding lead-times to our Atlas customers as our Columbia customers have experienced in the past, with coordination of both companies activities from the Rockwall location,” said Bricker.

Tubelite Completes 18-Month Improvement Plan
Tubelite Inc. of Reed City, Mich., has announced that it has installed a new Sutton 2650/2750 UST Syntec extrusion press. In addition, the company is installing a Belco automated handling system. The company expects the equipment to be online and fully operational by the end of June 2002, in an effort to offer quick lead times this coming fall.

The additions are part of an 18-month, now-complete project, which included a building addition to optimize Tubelite’s material-receiving process, two new Tekna CNC stations to support the door and frame fabrication line, two new Belco age ovens and integrated conveyor systems, automated door and lineal packaging equipment and upgraded software to streamline the order-entry process.

Steve Klinge, Tubelite’s plant manager, said the machines have already sped up the company’s lead time for fabricated doors and frames. Ken Werbowy, the company’s president and chief executive officer, said the company is making these improvements to enhance its service rather than cut back.

“While there appears to be a trend of cutbacks and consolidation in the industry, we at Tubelite are making these investments to ensure dependable service and quality while dramatically reducing lead times for our clients,” Werbowy said. “The updated equipment will align Tubelite’s manufacturing operations with these service and lead-time leadership goals for the future.” 

Salem Distributing Becomes Employee-Owned

Salem Distributing Co. of Winston-Salem, N.C., has announced that it is now employee-owned. Previously, the supplier of equipment and supplies was owned by Bob Long.
“During Mr. Long’s 20-year ownership, Salem continually set the standard for the industry’s demand for cost-effective, high-quality innovative machinery and supplies,” said Steve Brown, advertising director. “He also instilled the philosophy at Salem that it was not just about supplies and machinery. It was about service. It was about value. It was about earning confidence and building partnerships. This was the commitment that brought Salem to this point, and the same commitment, shared by its new ownership, that will take it into the future.”

Salem Distributing has been in business for nearly 70 years.


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