The leader in vinyl and fiberglass door and window manufacturing in the East is opening up its first western plant in Fernley.
Deceuninck North America (DNA) celebrated its grand opening of the 150,000-square-foot, $22.5 million plant on Oct. 22.
That’s just the beginning.
Filip Geeraert, CEO of DNA, said the building is designed to expand.
“We can at least triple it depending on how fast we grow,” he said in a phone interview with the NNBW before the grand opening. “The current facility is designed to expand, to take out walls.”
Deceuninck began in Belgium in 1937 and expanded to the United States in 1995, opening its North American headquarters in Monroe, Ohio.
Geeraert has worked for the company for 20 years, including 17 years in the U.S.
DNC has enjoyed double-digit growth the past three years. As the Monroe plant reached capacity, the company began looking at expansion options.
“We had the option to expand in Ohio or look for expansion elsewhere,” Geeraert said. “We’re number one east of the Rockies but hardly had a presence in the West.”
For years, potential customers in the West had been saying that Ohio was too far away to make shipments convenient, but they’d be interested in doing business if DNA opened a plant in the West.
Potential sites were narrowed to Reno and Salt Lake City, Geeraert said.
Factors that went into the decision to come to the Reno region included logistical factors making it easy to reach customers in California, Oregon and Washington, rail access, a ready workforce, and local government incentives.
The 28-acre site in Fernley met all the criteria. It has two railroad spurs with easy access to the site. Residents of Fernley who had been commuting were eager to work close to home. And the company’s contacts with Governor Brian Sandoval and Fernley Mayor Roy Edgington Jr. were fruitful, Geeraert explained.
Work began on the site in late winter of this year with Alston Construction serving as the general contractor.
“I take my hat off,” Geeraert said of the construction team. “Only nine months from moving dirt to finishing the building.”
According to its website, Deceuninck has more than 200 active patents on designs, processes, technologies and material science. The company’s processes provide a product with a higher performance both in terms of energy efficiency and durability.
The company’s website describes it’s production as a “fully integrated design, compounding, tooling and extraction company that produces vinyl window and door systems and compound solutions for the building and construction industry” using a proprietary PVC technology.
Deceuninck customizes its products to meet the needs of the customer, yet is able to maintain a zero back-order policy and ship in five days, Geeraert said.
The Fernley plant is opening with 24 extrusion lines and a staff of 35. In addition to the manufacturing floor, it houses manufacturing support, offices and a warehouse.
The product line at the Fernley plant will be slightly different than that in the Ohio plant in keeping with the different product needs and styles used in western state, and the current demands.
To start with, the Fernley plant will be limited to producing light compounded products for such uses as residents, hotels, and dormitories that have up to six stories. The demand for those types of products is “really taking off,” Geeraert said, noting that 70 percent of the residential market uses PVC technology for windows and doors.
Compounds made in Monroe can easily be shipped west by rail.
DNA also sells heavy compounded products for industrial uses, however those products are currently imported from Europe.
As the market grows, heavy compounding will be done in the United States, Geeraert.
And as the Fernley plant grows “we will add all manufacturing departments,” he said.
He anticipates the Fernley plant will see additional product lines quickly.
“That will probably happen next years as we see demand grow in the West.”