Big bro and lil bro
Readers in North America may know of CertainTeed, a very large manufacturer of building products. They just opened an enormous factory and distribution center for roofing shingles in Jonesburg, Missouri, about an hour west of St. Louis. My brother, John Crowe, is the CEO and he invited us out for the grand opening.
CertainTeed is owned by the 350 year old French company Saint-Gobain. Their first claim to fame was doing the mirrors in the Great Hall of Versailles. John is their director of North American operations. The CEO of Saint-Gobain itself, Pierre-André de Chalendar, came over from Paris for the occasion. Governor Jay Nixon of Missouri was in attendance. (Love those jobs!)
The tour was fascinating. The plant and distribution center cover 225,000 square feet / 20,900 square meters. It is so highly automated that when running two shifts it requires only 89 employees. The plant engineer said that a third shift would require only 12 more. Now, at two-thirds capacity, it produces 800 loading pallets of shingles a day, and those pallets are about 6 feet, or a bit less than 2 meters, on a side and way taller than me (and my brother and I are pretty tall). It was a very interesting and different day.
Brother John at the podium.
Pierre-André de Chalendar, CEO of Saint-Gobain
Gov. Jay Nixon of Missouri
And who makes the giant ceremonial scissors for ribbon cuttings?