Knight Joins Axalta Coating Systems to Manage Dura Coat Products

Dan Knight has joined Axalta Coating Systems (AXTA) in their Industrial Coatings segment as the vice president and general manager for Dura Coat Products.

Axalta purchased a majority stake in Dura Coat this past summer and will acquire the remaining outstanding shares by January 2019, subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Founded in 1986, Dura Coat has developed a position in the market via its singular focus on overcoming customer challenges through innovation. Dura Coat brands include Durapon, Ceranamel and the XT series of specialty coatings.

“Product innovation has always been Dura Coat’s strength.” says Dr. Myung K. Hong, president of Dura Coat Products. “With the synergies that are possible through the acquisition, we welcome Dan to lead the integration of the two companies. We continue to be vigilant about our customer service while looking forward to increased product research and development.”

Dan comes to Axalta with 25 years of experience in sales, marketing and R&D management in the coil and extrusion coatings markets. Dan will work directly with Dr. Hong to continue to integrate the Dura Coat business into Axalta while working to expand the business both in North America and globally. Key priorities for Dan and the management team of Dura Coat will be maintaining the product innovation and customer service that Dura Coat is known for, while taking advantage of the synergies that Axalta offers Dura Coat.

Atlas Roofing Roadshow Enhances Contractor Business Skills

Atlas Roofing has hit the road with its roadshow, visiting cities across the country. The purpose of this journey is to help contractors enhance the business skills that will increase their job close rate and maximize customer satisfaction.

“Our roadshows are designed to help contractors outshine the competition and maximize closing opportunities,” says Stan Bastek, Atlas director of Marketing and Sales Development. “We have built a rapport with contractors through events like these, and we, in turn, learn a lot from them.

“The main purpose of this roadshow is to share our ideas with everyone while educating contractors about our product line and marketing programs.”

The 2017 Atlas Roofing Roadshow will feature the following sessions:

  • Learn how to become a 3M Scotchgard Shingle Sales Specialist
  • Control your cash flow with Genesis Contractor Solutions
  • Set yourself apart: Sell on value, not on price and land more jobs
  • HP Shingle Technology: How to save both time and money on installation
  • Boost your social impact: Learn how to maximize your social media to gain leads and increase referrals.

The Roadshow provides an opportunity for roofing contractors to learn about product innovations and marketing partnerships that can be leveraged from Atlas Roofing. Professional headshots will be taken of all participants, free of charge. And as always, there will be more than $5,000 in giveaways and prizes for the lucky few who win the fun roadshow-themed game show, What’s That Streaking.

“Stan and his crew of Atlas professionals impressed me,” says Josh Thompson of Storm Doctors Inc. in Peachtree City, Ga. at this past year’s roadshow in Atlanta. “They had product knowledge and presentations. Although I’ve wanted to go to one of these events for a while, this was the first time I was able to attend. And I’m going home with some helpful knowledge,”

Atlas Roadshow events are half-day conventions open to contractors, their staff members and Atlas distribution partners. Registration is required to attend, but admission is free. This year, we will hit these markets:

  • Oklahoma City – Jan. 26
  • Minneapolis – Feb. 1
  • Ann Arbor, Mich. – Spring 2017
  • Nashville, Tenn. – Spring 2017
  • Philadelphia – Spring 2017
  • Pensacola, Fla. – Date TBA
  • Austin/San Antonio – Date TBA
  • Tampa, Fla. – Date TBA
  • Baton Rouge/New Orleans – Date TBA
  • Dallas – Date TBA

Boom Crane Offers Safety, Innovation

The LRT 1090-2.1 boom crane blends safety with innovation.

The LRT 1090-2.1 boom crane blends safety with innovation.

German crane manufacturer Liebherr has re-entered the rough-terrain market. Impressed by the line’s capabilities and safety features, the ALL Family of Companies has pre-ordered 15 machines. The LRT 1090-2.1 is a 100-USt full power boom crane, set to debut at the 2017 CONEXPO-CON/AGG show (March 7–11, Las Vegas).

The LRT 1090-2.1 blends safety with innovation. The manufacturer’s VarioBase outrigger monitoring system enables each support to be extended to a different length while automatically delivering support status information to the operator. It’s ideal for maintaining safety and flexibility in the tight spaces encountered in today’s urban and industrial jobsites. It also allows for capacity when lifting over the supports.

The boom crane incorporates safety features into a modern package. The flat deck, electrically extendable cab platform, and multiple ladders minimize the risk of fall injuries. Controls are easy to understand. The attachment of the counterweight and installation of the jib are fully monitored by the boom crane during setup.

MBMA Releases 2016 Annual Report

The Metal Building Manufacturers Association (MBMA) has released its 2016 Annual Report. This resource highlights the technical research, sustainability innovations, industry advocacy, safety preparations and educational programs the association has undertaken over the past year. The report provides relevant information for anyone who works with metal building systems, or who is involved in the low-rise commercial building market. It can be downloaded here.
 
“This last year was filled with growth and opportunities for our association and we are proud of all that has been accomplished,” says Brad Curtis, MBMA chair. “We have made strides in the areas of structural research, education, sustainability and fire protection. The tools we develop in these areas help designers to use metal building systems in new and exciting ways. These tools are what differentiate metal buildings as a durable building construction approach that produces economy, speed to market and single-source control.”
 
“For more than 60 years, MBMA has raised the bar for the metal building systems industry,” says Dan Walker, MBMA’s associate general manager. “MBMA members and various committees spearhead research, create innovative tools and resources, and improve industry practices and standards.”
 
The 2016 Annual Report details recent accomplishments made by MBMA, some of which include:

  • developing college capstone courses on metal building design
  • producing several new technical manuals
  • influencing code changes
  • creating educational webinars, videos and podcasts
  • completing three industry-wide Environmental Product Declarations
  • adding a new membership category to include architects and engineers

 
Also, in 2016, MBMA played a role in instituting a new Founders category in the Metal Construction Hall of Fame, which pays tribute to early industry trailblazers.
 
“The leadership that our association provides is bar none. MBMA’s members work alongside other industry experts and organizations to improve the safety, quality and durability of low-rise construction for future generations,” Walker adds.
 
MBMA’s membership represents more than $2 billion in annual shipments and accounts for nearly half of the total non-residential, low-rise construction market in the United States.
 
MBMA also provides engineering leadership through the many research programs it sponsors annually, often in coordination with universities and engineering schools throughout North America. This research is used to improve the performance, efficiency and quality of metal building systems—and serves to elevate the technology used to produce them.

Program Operator Consortium Welcomes Two New Affiliate Members

The green building industry’s consortium of program operators has announced the addition of two new affiliate members: NRMCA (National Ready Mixed Concrete Association), a concrete advocate organization, and Sustainable Solutions Corp., an environmental consulting firm.
 
The Program Operator Consortium launched last year to provide standardized, and more useful environmental-product transparency solutions and to reduce complexity in the marketplace. The consortium serves as a resource and advocate for creating product category rules (PCRs), reviewing life cycle assessment reports (LCA), and verifying and publishing environmental product declarations (EPDs).
 
“As one of the leading EPD operators in the construction materials industry, we must consider opportunities to deliver value to our membership,” states James Bogdan, senior director of sustainability initiatives with NRMCA. “Joining the POC allows our industry access to a network of practitioners and experts, and insight to evolving environmental disclosure reporting.”
 
“Sustainable Solutions Corp. is excited to join the Program Operator Consortium as an affiliate member because of our commitment to product transparency and to help ensure the production of transparency documents,” says Tad Radzinski, president of Sustainable Solutions Corp. “We bring to the consortium our years of experience completing LCAs and EPDs, a team of certified LCA practitioners, and our objective of using LCA data to drive sustainability, product innovation and continuous improvement.”
 
These two affiliate members join thinkstep, a software, data and environmental consulting services company, which was the consortium’s first affiliate member. Regular members of the Consortium include: ASTM International, CSA Group, ICC-Evaluation Service, NSF Sustainability, SCS Global Services, and Sustainable Minds.
 
The Affiliate Member Program was created for industry associations, government agencies, standards developers, consultants, and data providers to have access to expertise from a like-minded community. The free program also provides education, discounted rates, and a seat at the table to contribute to creating uniformity across environmental reporting formats, data requirements, and communication.
 
Each consortium member is represented in the group’s Technical Advisory Board. These LCA experts oversee the implementation of the consortium’s North American two-part PCR framework, which consortium members have aligned to use and maintain over the past year. Today, PCRs created by any member will produce standardized environmental declarations, helping both manufacturers as well as decision-makers who specify green building materials and products. The first catalog of North American PCRs and an aggregated catalog of EPDs from members’ programs are available at here.
 
The consortium holds both in-person meetings and webinars with global manufacturers, LCA providers, and industry trade associations. Those interested in joining or learning more about the consortium are encouraged to contact info@programoperators.org.

Axalta Distinguished Lecture Series Speaker Discusses Artificial Photosynthesis

Professor Daniel G. Nocera, the Patterson Rockwood Professor of Energy at Harvard University, was the honored speaker at this year’s Axalta Distinguished Lecture Series. Axalta Coating Systems, a supplier of liquid and powder coatings, sponsored the event which was hosted by the Department of Chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania last week. Professor Nocera’s lecture titled, “A Complete Artificial Photosynthesis,” explained his research that led to the development of an artificial device that converts water and carbon dioxide into biomass and liquid fuels using sunlight.

One of the challenges with using solar energy as a source of electricity is the need for a cost effective method to store the sun’s energy. One example of energy storage is photosynthesis, the process whereby plants and other organisms use sunlight to convert water and carbon dioxide into biomass that can be used later, as needed, as a source of fuel. Professor Nocera has mimicked key aspects of this process by creating an artificial leaf.

“We first invented an artificial leaf that can split water into hydrogen and oxygen using sunlight,” says Professor Nocera. “We then used a bio-engineered bacterium to convert carbon dioxide along with the hydrogen produced from the artificial leaf into biomass and liquid fuels. The hybrid microbial and artificial leaf operate at solar-to-biomass (10.7 percent) and solar-to-fuels (6.2 percent) yields, exceeding the 1 percent yield of natural photosynthesis,” states Professor Nocera.

“At Axalta, we are committed to delivering innovative coatings solutions that protect our customers’ products,” says Dr. Barry Snyder, Axalta senior vice president and chief technology officer. “Our sustainable coating systems benefit stakeholders, including our customers and the communities in which we operate. Professor Nocera’s research has the potential to have an impact by offering a sustainable source of energy. The translation of fundamental research to practical application, as embodied in Professor Nocera’s research, is an element of the collaboration between Axalta and the Department of Chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania.”

“The Axalta Distinguished Lecture Series provides opportunities for our students and faculty members to interact with scholars in the world,” says Gary A. Molander, department chair and Hirschmann-Makineni Professor of Chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania. “This year, we are delighted to have Professor Nocera share his innovations with us. Professor Nocera’s work exemplifies the opportunities that exist to use fundamental science to create technologies that have broad societal benefits. We look forward to continued collaboration with Axalta in the years ahead.”

Past speakers have included world renowned scientists, including Nobel Prize laureates William Moerner (Chemistry 2014), Robert Grubbs (Chemistry 2005), Ahmed Zewail (Chemistry 1999), Steven Chu (Physics 1997), Harold Kroto (Chemistry 1996), Richard Smalley (Chemistry 1996), George Olah (Chemistry 1994), P.G. de Gennes (Physics 1991), Elias Corey (Chemistry 1990), Thomas Cech (Chemistry 1989), Donald Cram (Chemistry 1987), Jean-Marie Lehn (Chemistry 1987), John Polanyi (Chemistry 1986), Yuan Lee (Chemistry 1986), Roald Hoffmann (Chemistry 1981), and Herbert Brown (Chemistry 1979).

Ashland Reveals New Corporate Identity and Organizational Culture

Ashland took another step in its plan for the future, revealing its “Always Solving” corporate identity and unveiling the organizational culture that will continue to differentiate the company as it continues its mission.

“We’ve been on a journey since announcing plans to separate Valvoline and Ashland into two standalone companies,” says Bill Wulfsohn, Ashland chairman and chief executive officer. “Today, both companies are positioned for bright futures.”

Along with his leadership team, Wulfsohn developed a strategy which empowers each of Ashland’s chemical businesses to develop its own strategic approach as to where to compete and how to win in their marketplace. Each will employ its own core competencies in problem-solving that brings value to customers. Together as one global team, Ashland will build an organization focused on innovation, operations, and capital deployment. Its foundation will continue to be built on operations. Ashland will continue fostering growth through innovations and sales opportunities, and continue capturing value delivered to customers while driving cost competitiveness.

The most public facing element of the evolution of Ashland, is its new corporate identity – Always Solving – which reflects the company’s positioning and people across diverse industries as broad as pharmaceuticals to automotive, personal care to paints, adhesives to biofunctionals, and more.

“Now is the time for Ashland to communicate the nature of who we are and what sets our employees apart. We’re a company of solvers who develop solutions to complex problems in applied chemistry, pushing the boundaries of what’s possible, and advancing the competitiveness of our customers across industries,” states Carolmarie Brown, Ashland director global marketing and business communications.

The positioning illustrates how Ashland acts as a partner to its customers, providing solutions that bring value to its business partners. In particular, the company is focused on innovations for growing market positions in segments such as pharmaceuticals, personal care and paints and coatings.

Today and moving forward, Ashland embodies how its people are distinguished by their ability to apply specialized chemistry with a disciplined approach that increases the efficacy, refines the usability, adds to the allure, ensures the integrity, and improves the profitability of their customers’ products and applications. Each of these qualities are manifested in different ways for different industries, and together, its people around the globe are always solving, to improve customers’ products. “In Ashland we bring together different backgrounds, different disciplines, different points of view, and we operate as one team with a sense of purpose,” said Luis Fernandez-Moreno, senior vice president of Ashland and president of the Chemicals Group.

Along with its strategy and identity is the articulation and implementation of a collective Ashland Way, its corporate culture, which is “to respect, protect, and advance the people we work with, companies we serve, shareholders who invest in our future, communities we’re a part of, and the planet we share.”

The Ashland Way will drive business growth and shape an organization of which employees will want to be a part. Values of safety, integrity, partnership and passion will guide behavior each day.

“We have a common understanding of how we operate, think, manage, encourage and act in order to build an organization and improve the world through solutions based on the application of specialty ingredients and materials,” Wulfsohn says.

Ashland has a focus on operations and has been committed to doing business with integrity and respect for all people and the world. The company has made formal commitments to improve the environmental, health, safety and security performance for facilities, processes and products throughout the entire operating system. Forty-six Ashland sites have received Responsible Care certification, including three facilities earlier this year.

NIBS States Proposed ABA Resolution to Make Codes and Standards Free Could Reduce Safety

The National Institute of Building Sciences issued an open letter to delegates attending the American Bar Association (ABA) Annual Meeting in August informing of the potential impacts if they vote to support a proposed resolution. The resolution—which advocates that copyrighted codes and standards incorporated by reference in legislation and regulation be made available for free—would alter the way codes and standards are developed in the United States.

In the U.S. construction industry alone, there are hundreds of copyrighted codes and standards that impact everything from seismic requirements and wind loads to water use and life safety. The standards developing organizations (SDOs) that develop these codes and standards have thousands of members, employees and volunteers that participate in the process to incorporate best practices and lessons learned to improve the standards. Each industry, from aeronautics and agricultural to electronics and telecommunications, has a similar structure and industry participation to address their specific needs. Such standards improve safety, drive innovation and improve commerce, both domestically and around the world.

The U.S. Government recognizes the benefit of private industry standards development, as directed by the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA, P.L. 104-113) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-119.

If the ABA’s suggested resolution and related advocacy campaign is successful, private-sector-developed standards would be subject to new requirements due to their incorporation by reference in legislation and regulation, and the ability for SDOs to recoup development costs would change considerably.

The development of codes and standards is expensive. Today, the cost is born by those who are ultimately impacted by the standards (whether by participating in the process or purchasing the resulting document). By making such information free online, the ABA resolution would hamper cost recovery through such mechanisms. The result would be that private-sector organizations may no longer be able to invest in the development process, leaving existing standards to remain stagnant (and thus inhibiting innovation) and shifting the responsibility (and expense) of developing future standards to the government.

ABA’s proposed resolution attempts to mitigate any copyright concerns by encouraging government agencies to negotiate licenses with SDOs. However, this change would require agencies to hire staff and implement contracting mechanisms, making it necessary for tax payers to cover the cost of standards development.

The National Institute of Building Sciences—which was established by the U.S. Congress to work with both the public and private sectors to advance building science and the design, construction and operations of buildings to meet national goals of health, safety and welfare—is extremely concerned that the ABA is advocating a one-size-fits-all legislative vehicle that will alter the long-standing tradition of private-sector-developed standards in the United States. The result could reduce safety, increase costs and add a burden to the government and tax-paying citizens.

In lieu of moving forward with the resolution, the Institute suggests the ABA focus on engaging in a meaningful dialogue with the SDO community to help address the changing nature of access to copyrighted materials through the internet and other electronic sources, and, after taking the long-term goals and impacts into consideration, identify a mutually acceptable path forward.

Read the letter.