Foundation of a culture

Ahead of its presence at the inaugural Visit Glass at The FIT Show, Flat Glass Solutions’ managing director Dave Cahill talks to Glass Times about the ethos at the specialist agent and distributor for glass machinery and equipment.

Flat Glass Solutions was founded in November 2014, with a few sales of spare parts and consumables to flat glass processors, and rapidly made an impact on the industry. Managing director Dave Cahill, and his two colleagues in the business, Dave Robson and Darren Oakley, all have engineering backgrounds, and their combined 60 years’ experience in the industry soon led to them being asked for advice on the purchase of flat glass machinery.

Their first machine sale followed not long after in early 2016.

Hailing from Australia, hence the somewhat obvious nickname of Oz, Dave believes this engineering experience, together with the company’s customer focus, enables them to understand what their customers really need, which is fundamental to building long-term partnerships.

Dave said: “We’ve always prided ourselves on doing things differently – innovative solutions with fresh ideas is how we like to describe our way of working. We don’t see any sale as simply ‘a sale’. We want to engage with our customers to help them specify and purchase machinery that will make a true difference to the success of their business. We believe that both parties being completely vested in the success of a project, paves the way for the best possible outcome, achieving more together is the very foundation of our culture.”

At the point of making its first sale, Flat Glass Solutions was only working with two suppliers but is now partnered with 11 brands from across Europe and Asia. It can supply all types of machinery for horizontal and vertical processes, as well as many ancillaries. This means it can find you the right machine from the right company while considering time and budgetary constraints, Dave said.

The relationships and reputation the company has built during its many years in the industry mean that it is able to deal with the super-brands at the top end of the market, as well as providing more budget-conscious alternatives, and entry level equipment.

“We are also able to offer completely bespoke solutions for our clients, something made possible by the strength of our supplier relationships and knowledge, having all worked on varied and highly technical projects over the years,” Dave said.

“Often customers come to us knowing what they would like a machine to do, but not knowing which machine can do it or even if such a machine exists. Our job is not only to determine which equipment might meet their needs but also to ensure that their entire team is fully proficient in getting the very best out of it for the long term. Of course, we also ensure the safety of the operators through thorough training and maintenance. On the rare occasion when issues do arise and assistance is needed, we’re there, no matter the manufacturer or the time zone.”

A key element of Flat Glass’s service proposition is what happens after the sale. The company sees the sale as just the beginning of its relationship with a customer, as it provides installation, training and warranty services via its outsourced engineering partner company, Total Plant Analysis.

Flat Glass Solutions