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Three Secrets of a Successful Manufacturer


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Can you ship now? This is the question David Schmetterer, president of Crawford Laboratories, Inc., manufacturer of Florock® Industrial Flooring, says his customers ask most often.

And the answer?  “Nearly always, YES!” he replied.

If that sounds unusual these days, it is.  Though slowly gaining economic confidence, most U.S. manufacturers, on the advice of their accountants, are still keeping inventories very low. How does Florock do it?

“Well, one secret is to know who you’re working for – the accountants or your customers”, says Schmetterer.  “We work for our customers.”

The only way to be prepared for any size concrete flooring installation, using any Florock system, any color, any time, he explains, is to maintain sufficient finished goods on warehouse shelves.

What about raw materials?  Schmetterer explained that, though the Florock line consists of many different cement floor paint technologies, one key raw ingredient for production is liquid epoxy resin.  And there’s the potential bottleneck.

Domestic producers have been in short supply of liquid epoxy resin at times –and have actually rationed product.  What’s a growing epoxy floor company to do?

“You’ve simply got to have more than one basket for your eggs,” muses Schmetterer.  Maintaining good relationships with two or more sources for each ingredient is imperative.  Florock buys raw materials for its concrete sealer products domestically whenever possible, and brings in full containers of epoxy resin from overseas when necessary.

What else does Florock’s president do to keep things running smoothly?  Again, it’s something rarely seen these days:  Florock pays its bills before they’re due. “Staying in the suppliers’ good graces” is the third secret of success. When asked how this gets rewarded, Schmetterer replied with a wink, “Who do you think gets called whenever excess raw material is available — the slow-paying guy or me?” We offer commercial floor coating systems.

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