Royal Expanding Into Standard Window Systems, Not Windows
A recent article in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has fueled speculation that Royal Group Technologies, now owned by Georgia Gulf Corp., is considering entry into the window manufacturing business. Mark Badger, Royal’s vice president of corporate communications and marketing, says that is not the case, however. “We do not intend to fabricate windows. It’s not our business.”
Currently, Royal is one of the largest extruders of vinyl window and door profiles in North America, supplying components to numerous manufacturers around the U.S. and Canada. Comments made by Edward A. Schmitt, Georgia Gulf chairman, president and CEO, in the Atlanta newspaper, were the result of an “unfortunate misunderstanding,” Badger states.
Royal, which has primarily focused on custom window profiles throughout its history, he explains, is now branching out into “open, shelf-type” systems that can be used by multiple window and door fabricators. He points to the RoyalGuard impact window system recently introduced as one example, as well as its EnerCell cellular PVC window design.
Atlanta-based Georgia Gulf acquired Toronto-based Royal in a deal valued at more than $1.5 billion. Georgia Gulf manufactures chemicals, including vinyl resins and compounds. The addition of Royal is designed to diversify the company away from commodity chemicals into more finished goods.
“Georgia Gulf is now an integrated vinyl building products company,” Schmitt told the Atlanta newspaper. “Over time, I think we will tend to move away from the integrated component of that definition and just be a building and home improvement products company.” The article suggested that transformation could include an expansion into the production of windows, not just window parts and frames.
In reality, the acquisition brings together a leading vinyl materials manufacturer with a leading building products extruder into “a highly integrated building products company and a very unique company at that,” says Badger. By bringing together a extrusion technology with materials technology, “we believe a lot of innovation will grow from there,” he adds.