Volume 44, Issue 7 - July 2009

Global Update

Guardian’s Newest Facility Begins Production 
Auburn Hills, Mich.-based Guardian Industries’ newest facility in Brazil has begun float glass production. The first ribbon of glass was pulled in April 2009 at the Tatui, Sao Paulo, plant. Guardian representatives say the Tatui plant will produce 800 tons per day and create hundreds of new jobs. 

This is the company’s second plant located in Brazil. Guardian established the first Brazilian plant in Porto Real and has invested more that $180 million into the country.

“Since building our first float glass plant we have grown enough to support a second,” says Mark LaCasse, managing director of Latin American operations. “This new plant will allow us to better meet the demand for our interior products.” www.guardian.com 

Raya and Interpane to Coat and Distribute Glass in Egypt

Raya Corp. in Cairo has ventured into the glass processing industry through a joint venture with Interpane in Germany. The new company will operate under the name Interpane Egypt LLC, with a 50-percent stake for each partner. Interpane Egypt will have the exclusive right to distribute the Interpane license to other glass manufacturing and processing factories in Egypt. 

The two companies will also establish Egypt Glass Investment, which will be the holding company for investments in various glass production projects. Interpane Egypt will offer technical and managerial consulting and will conduct technical feasibility studies for companies working in glass production, manufacturing and trading.  

The joint venture also will establish a float glass coating plant by 2010. The factory is expected to produce high-performance glass for solar and heat control application. 

“The glass industry in Egypt is a promising market; especially that most of Egypt’s glass is based on imports.  Thus, we decided to penetrate this market with a strong partner like Interpane, who has more than 30 years of experience,” says Mr. Medhat Khalil, Raya Holding chair and chief executive officer (CEO). 

“With our know-how in glass production and Raya’s long market presence and leadership, we trust that we will build a strong glass production company in Egypt,” adds Georg F. Hesselbach, Interpane chair and CEO. 

Vitro to Make Madrid’s Windows Efficient 
In order to improve efficiency and energy savings in buildings, Vitro Cristalglass, a European affiliate of Mexico-based Vitro, is cooperating with the community of Madrid for the promotion of Plan Renove for window replacements in single and multifamily homes. 

The plan, authorized in 2008 by the Government Council for the community of Madrid, consists of the replacement of single pane windows with insulating glass units in housing. 

“Through this plan, Vitro is offering to all those interested in substituting their old windows a wide range of double-pane reinforced thermal windows (ATR) that allow for significant energy savings of between 20 and 40 percent, depending on the combination of windows,” says Alberto Gómez, marketing manager for Vitro Cristalglass. 

The windows must comply with the Plan Renove specifications and cannot have a U-value greater than 2.2 W/m2K. 

Estimates show that between 11,000 and 14,000 houses could benefit from the program, affecting 50,000 Madrid residents. The reduction in energy consumption in the region would be 3,350 equivalent tons of oil per year, which translates into savings to the owners of $2.7 million USD (1.95 million EUR) per year. 

Through this plan Madrid will become the first Spanish community to put in place a Renove plan for windows that will contribute to energy savings in the region as well as the individual consumer.

“Besides having an important impact on energy consumption in Madrid we hope the execution of this plan may serve, to a certain degree, the reactivation of construction affected by the current economic crisis,” Gómez says. 

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