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Guardian Europe Sarl

Guardian Europe Sarl
Adresa: 19 rue du Puits Romain, L-8070 Bertrange, Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, -, Judet
Fax: -
Mobil: 0040 728 786.277
E-mail: sciurescu@guardian.com
Web site: www.guardian.com
Persoana de contact: Sorin Ciurescu, Marketing Manager
Domenii: Sticla arhitecturala
Descriere activitate
Sticla arhitecturala
Prezentare companie/institutie
GUARDIAN: A new factory, with a capacity of 1,000 metric tons per day
 
 
 
 
 
Guus Boekhoudt
Position/Company: Vice President of Guardian Glass - Europe & Russia and Managing Director, Guardian Europe S.à r.l.
Professional experience: responsible for 10 float glass plants, 13 distribution centers and 4000 employees
 
Parte a grupului Guardian Industries, Guardian Glass este unul dintre cei mai importanti furnizori mondiali de sticla float. Compania, cu sediul central in Auburn Hills, Michigan - SUA, implementeaza in mod constant o strategie orientata spre crearea de valoare pentru clientii sai si punand accent pe inovare, privita ca principala parghie pentru dezvoltare. Portofoliul de produse include o gama diversa de modele de sticla pentru aplicatii arhitecturale, tehnice, de design interior si transport. Solutiile Guardian caracterizate printr-o inalta performanta energetica, din gama de joasa emisivitate (Low-E), sunt proiectate pentru a indeplini cele mai exigente cerinte de tehnice si estetice. In continuare, Guus Boekhoudt, vicepresedinte al Guardian Glass, Europe & Rusia si Managing Director, Guardian Europe, se refera pe larg la noutatile incluse recent in portofoliu, oferind, totodata, detalii interesante cu privire la strategia de dezvoltare a grupului nord-american pe piata europeana.
 
- How would you describe the current situation of the international flat glass market for architectural applications? Please, briefly refer to demand and supply, the balance between these elements, the business environment, competition etc.
- In Europe, glass demand is growing and expected to continue to grow. We can point to several trends that drive this growth. One is the ongoing shift from double to triple glazing, especially in Europe, for more energy-efficient commercial and residential windows. Another is represented by the general trend to increase natural light in residential and commercial buildings to improve occupant health and wellbeing. Also, is visible a general economic recovery in many countries which spurs construction and innovation. When we look around the world, we are seeing fairly positive economic growth in Brazil, driven by construction sector and modest construction growth. North America continues to be strong fueled by both robust construction and automotive industry. There is an economic slowdown in China that is mildly affecting the rest of Asia Pacific and the confidence in the Asian region, but this can also create opportunity. Guardian benefits by having a strong diversified global footprint so we are able to adapt at all regional uncertainties as they arise.
- What were the measures implemented in your company to align at the new trends in the industry, in terms of digitization, Industry 4.0 etc.? To what extent those measures have contributed to the current development of Guardian Glass?
- We constantly strive to improve our productivity and the quality in our operations and Industry 4.0 is only one way to do so. During the past year we implemented an internal sales department transformation across the company. The transformation aimed to further align the customer service model with the regional business model of Guardian Glass in Europe, organized around customers, regions and segments. The aim of this transformation is to improve customer service by standardizing and streamlining processes and making them more effective, based on constant knowledge sharing, and scalability.
- List the strengths and weaknesses of the company in the last year? Which one of these do you think was most important?
- We believe that the role of business is to make lives better and glass is a perfect example of that. We want to become the preferred partner for our customers and as a result of this we must understand their needs for the future, which will help to develop glass solutions that will continue to enhance window systems. In this regard, one of our strengths is our focus on continuous improvement and innovation in both the products we deliver and in our internal processes. Two recent examples are Guardian Vacuum IG™, our vacuum insulated glass product that has already proved successful in commercial refrigeration, and our new cost-effective dynamic shading solution for windows and doors. The dynamic shading solution is clean, adaptable and is completely self-contained within a double or triple insulating glass unit. With no mechanical parts, this new shade solution isn’t subject to the same mechanical failures commonly seen with other integral blind solutions. It is an excellent application for homes and can be easily activated. Initially, it will be available in a fully integrated ‘blackout’ shade version, followed by privacy and solar glare control versions. In terms of weaknesses, it has been a real challenge to keep up with demand. Supply is indeed tight for Guardian, but we are investing in the future to help manage it: two of our furnaces went through a repair that allowed us to increase capacity by around 20% and 25%. The construction of an additional float and coated glass manufacturing plant in Poland has already begun. It is expected to start operations in early 2020 and it will pull 1,000 metric tons of glass per day and will have a capacity of 16 million sqm of coated glass. We also have a new laminated glass production line in Hungary, operational for a few months now.
- Offer some details about the financial performance at the group level and in Europe.
- We are enthusiastic about the current state of our business and encouraged by what we think will be a growing increase in glass demand for the foreseeable future. However, the margins on our products are under pressure mainly due to the increase of energy, raw material and transportation costs. We will end this year with a revenue growth of approximately 10%.
- In this context, which would be the main action plan which your company will implement on short and medium term?
- As previously stated, we continue to increase production capacity, building a second float line in Poland and are also proceeding with plans to construct a pilot facility in Europe to launch our new dynamic shade solution, which is expected late in 2019. To become our customers’ preferred partners, it is essential that we constantly innovate and transform ourselves. We need to follow our customers in their own transformation and anticipate their needs for today, tomorrow and beyond.
(articol aparut in revista Fereastra, editia Ianuarie-Februarie 2019)
 

 
GUARDIAN: Perspective de revigorare a cererii in sectorul vitrajelor
Pe piata din Romania, in anul anterior compania Guardian Glass a raportat o usoara crestere a cifrei de afaceri. Ajustarea pozitiva s-a datorat, in principal, strategiei care a presupus orientarea catre proiectele de investitii imobiliare rezidentiale, precum si catre domeniul amenajarilor interioare, acesta din urma generand venituri suplimentare mai ales pe segmentul sortimentelor speciale. Echipa manageriala a subsidiarei autohtone isi manifesta in continuare optimismul cu privire la evolutia livrarilor pe termen scurt, pentru 2014 fiind programata o consolidare si chiar o accentuare a tendintei ascendente instalate in exercitiul financiar anterior. Evaluarile curente se bazeaza pe faptul ca Guardian Glass este implicata, in acest moment, in furnizarea de sticla atat din categoria de control solar , destinata unui numar important de obiective de constructii aflate in curs de executie, cat si din gama pentru aplicatii de interior, incadrata in programul InGlass.

Sorin Ciurescu, director de marketing al Guardian Glass: „Incepand cu anul 2013, s-a resimtit o usoara imbunatatire a domeniului constructiilor, care s-a accentuat in prima parte a exercitiului financiar curent. Astfel, in ultimele luni am avut discutii detaliate in legatura cu mai multe proiecte care s-au reactivat. Cu toate acestea, evolutia este nesemnificativa si nu se poate vorbi inca despre o redresare veritabila a activitatii, care va fi posibila abia atunci cand vor fi finalizate contractele respective. De asemenea, un imbold important ar putea fi generat de implicarea pe piata de profil a unor investitori noi - altii decat cei traditionali - care sa promoveze obiective de mare anvergura si sa demonstreze astfel ca increderea in piata imobiliara din Romania a fost recastigata”.

Multi beneficiari opteaza pentru utilizarea unor materiale neconforme cu specificatiile proiectelor
Recesiunea a afectat destul de mult domeniul local al sticlei arhitecturale, fapt ce s-a reflectat in activitatea furnizorilor ce activeaza pe piata de profil. Acestia s-au confruntat in ultimii ani cu o serie de provocari, multe obstacole fiind surmontate insa prin implementarea unor politici ce au vizat orientarea mai ferma catre client si indeplinirea cerintelor beneficiarilor, fara a face niciun rabat de la calitate. In acest sens, Sorin Ciurescu, director de marketing al Guardian Glass Romania, a subliniat ca „o problema aflata permanent in actualitate ramane cea a favorizarii unor furnizori, in conditiile in care apar tot mai flagrante diverse compromisuri tehnice si legate de calitatea produselor promovate de acestia. Chestiunea respectiva poate fi incadrata in categoria concurentei neloiale, dar si are o anumita justificare obiectiva, data de bugetele foarte scazute aflate la dispozitia partenerilor. Consecinta imediata a unui astfel de comportament a fost constituita de inlocuirea sticlei destinate aplicatiilor comerciale cu vitraje recomandate pentru utilizarea la obiectivele rezidentiale, cu efecte negative clare asupra calitatii si performantei solutiilor obtinute. Ineficienta produselor finite realizate in conditiile descrise anterior este evidenta pentru specialisti, insa nu poate fi sesizata prea usor de beneficiari, iar aceasta explica facilitatea procesului de implementare a improvizatiilor respective. O alta problema stringenta este cea a creantelor neonorate, ceea ce induce presiuni deosebit de mari asupra companiilor colaboratoare. Din pacate, se mizeaza pe obiceiul complet gresit de a sustine investitiile pe baza sistemului de credit furnizor. O asemenea solutie nu va ajuta la redresarea pe termen lung a economiei romanesti si cu atat mai putin la consolidarea afacerilor firmelor ce activeaza in domeniul constructiilor. Optiunea noastra este de a ne alege cu grija partenerii, cum, de altfel, am facut-o intotdeauna, demonstrandu-se faptul ca o comunicare eficienta si o colaborare pe termen lung am avut doar cu firmele care au consemnat succes in afaceri”.
Oferta completa de solutii vitrate pentru toate tipurile de aplicatii
Obiectivul major pentru exercitiul financiar in curs este de mentinere a unui ritm sustinut de Sortimentele de sticla arhitecturala promovate de Guardian Glass sunt recunoscute de experti pentru caracteristicile deosebite, constituind o optiune de luat in considerare pentru toate tipurile de aplicatii. Portofoliul de produse, disponibil integral pe piata din Romania, cuprinde atat vitraje uzuale, din seriile float clar, ClimaGuard si ClimaGuard Solar, cat si sticla de control solar pentru aplicatii rezidentiale, modele laminate (acoperite sau nu cu pelicula de oxid de argint), solutii avansate din categoria SunGuard si modele pentru interior (DecoCristal si SatinDeco). In ultima perioada, compania a livrat materiale specifice pentru o serie de obiective reprezentative realizate pe plan national. Dintre acestea, cele mai importante sunt reprezentate de: reteaua de magazine Lidl, imobilul de birouri Sky Tower - Bucuresti, centrul comercial Promenada Mall - Bucuresti, Univesitatea de Stiinte Agricole si Medicina Veterinara din Cluj-Napoca, Centrele de Afaceri din Pitesti si Oradea, Platina Office Building din Cluj-Napoca, ansamblul rezidential Circului Park Tower - Bucuresti, clubul La Stejari si hotel Mercure (ambele din Bucuresti) etc.
Completarea portofoliului cu vitraje deosebit de performante
Recent, Guardian Glass a lansat pe plan international gama sortimentelor multifunctionale SunGuard SNX 50/23, caracterizate prin faptul ca, in premiera, permit prelucrarea la cald in vederea securizarii. „Aceasta proprietate este foarte importanta avand in vedere faptul ca, inclusiv in Romania, este obligatorie utilizarea modelelor din categoria respectiva in special la structurile din categoria fatadelor cortina, conform prevederilor standardului armonizat revizuit EN 13830. Alaturi de sticla SunGuard SNX 60/28, vitrajul respectiv respecta in totalitate noile tendinte arhitecturale, avand o selectivitate ridicata, aspect neutru, transmisie maxima a luminii si un factor excelent de control solar. Pe segmentul de luminatoare si ferestre de mansarda, in prezent promovam intens vitrajul SunGuard SN 29/18, caracterizat printr-o protectie solara optimizata pentru acest tip de aplicatii. In ceea ce priveste modelele high-tech, trebuie mentionat faptul ca am lansat solutia antireflexiva Clarity, destinata proiectelor ce impun o vizibilitate maxima a spatiului aflat dincolo de elementul de delimitare constituit de foaia de sticla. Putem afirma ca, in conformitate cu proprietatile demonstrate in cursul unor teste minutioase, acest sortiment este, actualmente, cel mai performant din clasa sa”, a mai precizat directorul de marketing al societatii.
Grad ridicat de reflexie a caldurii si proprietati spectro-fotometrice optime
Din punct de vedere tehnic, SunGuard SNX 50/23 prezinta un transfer de 50% al luminii naturale si o reflexie de 77% a energiei solare. Inserat intr-un pachet de geam termoizolant, asigura un coeficient de transfer termic de 1 W/mpK intr-o structura 6-16-4 SunGuard SNX 50/23, cu insertie de 90% argon, respectiv de 0,7 W/mpK in varianta 6-12-4 SunGuard SNX 50/23 - 12 - 4 ClimaGuard Premium. Aspectul estetic este deosebit gratie nuantei neutre si a gradului scazut de reflexie. In ceea ce priveste modelele care se preteaza la aplicarea tratamentelor termice (HT), acestea au performante uniforme si nu prezinta defecte vizuale dupa procesare. Pentru asigurarea caracteristicilor respective, Guardian Glass pune la dispozitia partenerilor o folie de protectie patentata de tip TPF, special proiectata in acest scop. Toate valorile de performanta mentionate anterior sunt nominale si se supun normelor de toleranta prevazute in standarde. Pentru o utilizare corecta a vitrajelor, compania presteaza servicii complexe de consultanta, asigurate de o echipa de specialisti in domeniu, beneficiind de o inalta calificare.
Sortimente antireflexive de inalt nivel tehnologic
Modelul Clarity reprezinta o solutie recomandata pentru vitrine, display-uri, turnuri de control, acvarii etc., datorita proprietatilor excelente detinute in planul reflexiei radiatiei luminoase. Avantajele utilizarii sticlei reflexive sunt multiple, reflexia reziduala avand o nuanta neutra de albastru, ce poate fi anihilata prin utilizarea unui substrat de tip UltraClear, obtinandu-se astfel o maximizare a caracteristicii de transparenta. Pentru aplicatiile la care se impune folosirea sticlei de siguranta, se recomanda securizarea printr-una dintre metodele clasice (tempered si heat strengthened), insa este necesar ca procesarea sa fie realizata de o companie certificata in acest sens de Guardian Glass si, in mod suplimentar, sa se utilizeze folia speciala TPF, necesara pentru protectia stratului de acoperire. In afara de dimensiunile standard, produsul este disponibil la o lungime de 6.000 m si o latime de 3.210 mm, fapt ce constituie un avantaj pentru proiectele la care se impune un camp larg de vizualizare. Sortimentul Clarity este livrat atat in varianta cu un substrat, cat si cu doua, fapt ce sporeste flexibilitatea in ceea ce priveste tipurile de aplicatii la care se poate utiliza.
Vanzari de peste 5,6 miliarde USD pentru un grup cu 18.000 de angajati
Guardian Industries, cu sediul central in Auburn Hills - Michigan (SUA), este unul dintre cei mai importanti fabricanti de sticla float, o parte importanta a activitatii fiind orientata spre executia de vitraje destinate utilizarii la aplicatiile arhitecturale. Corporatia are peste 18.000 de angajati ce activeaza in 25 de state de pe cinci continente. Dupa opt decenii de activitate, Guardian se situeaza in topul celor mai mari companii private de peste ocean (dupa ce o perioa­da de peste 17 ani a fost cotata la bursele nord-americane de valori), realizand o cifra de afaceri ce depaseste 5,6 miliarde USD. In toata aceasta perioada, firma s-a remarcat in domeniul specific de activitate, mai ales dupa 1970, cand a demarat operatiunile de productie a sticlei float. In scurt timp, activitatea s-a extins pe plan international, mai intai in Canada, prin deschiderea in Ontario a unei unitati de securizare. Gratie investitiilor masive in activitatea de cercetare-dezvoltare, a devenit posibila introducerea rapida in portofoliul de produse a sortimentelor de joasa emisivitate, avand caracteristici deosebite determoizolare. La finele penultimului deceniu al secolului trecut, compania a accesat piata din Europa, prin inaugurarea primei fabrici in Dudelange - Luxemburg. Dupa numai doi ani, alta investitie importanta a vizat infiintarea unitatii din Oroshaza - Ungaria, imediat urmand o actiune similara in Gujarat (India) si in Tudela (Spania). Extinderea a continuat in Brazilia, Thailanda, Germania, Arabia Saudita, Elvetia, Mexic, Columbia, Polonia, Marea Britanie, Emiratele Arabe Unite etc.
***
Portofoliul actual de produse fabricate de grupul Guardian Industries include o gama sortimentala extinsa, cuprinzand modele pentru aplicatii comerciale (sticla arhitecturala SunGuard, cu proprietati avansate de performanta), rezidentiale (ClimaGuard), solutii pentru interior (InGlass, ShowerGuard, DiamondGuard), vitraje destinate proiectelor de energie regenerabila/panouri fotovoltaice (EcoGuard), precum si o mare varietate de sticla tehnica. Solutiile promovate sunt incadrate atat in gama float clar, cat si in cea care presupune utilizarea unor acoperiri speciale, rezultand variante Low-E, precum si oglinzi, modele vopsite, reflexive etc. Toate acestea se preteaza la utilizarea la diverse aplicatii din domeniul constructiilor.
GUARDIAN: Perspectives of revival for the glazing systems demand
On the Romanian market, Guardian Glass company reported a slight increase in turnover for the last year. The positive adjustment was due mainly to the strategy involved for targeting the residential real estate investment projects and the interior design, the latter generating an additional income especially on the special products segment. The local subsidiary management team further expresses optimism about the short-term evolution of deliveries. For 2014, there are scheduled a consolidation and widening upward trend installed already during the previous financial year. Current evaluations are based on the fact that the Guardian Glass is involved, in this moment, in providing both solar control glass for a number of special objectives in progress and a wide range of products dedicated to indoor applications, framed into the INGLASS program. The recession has affected pretty much the local architectural glass sector, which was reflected in the activity of the suppliers operating on the market. They have faced in recent years with a number of challenges, but many obstacles are overcome by implementing policies that targeted stronger customer orientation and meeting the requirements of the clients without making any compromise in terms of quality. In this regard, Sorin Ciurescu, marketing director of Guardian Glass Romania, asserted that a problem which is permanent in actuality remains that of favoring some providers, who choose to promote products with flagrant technical compromises on the quality. This matter could be classified as unfair competition, and has some objective justification, given the very low budgets available to the customers. An immediate consequence of such behavior is constituted by replacement of the glass for commercial applications with models recommended for use on residential objectives. This fact exerts a clearly negative effect on the quality and performance of the final product. The inefficiency of the finished goods made under the conditions described above is obvious to specialists, but cannot be easily explained to beneficiaries and this could enlighten the implementation of such improvisations.
(articol aparut in revista Fereastra, editia Octombrie 2014)

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