The company has credited Flexospan's value-added approach as crucial to meeting their customers' needs. President Tony Papalas selected Flexospan panels for Great Lakes National Steel galvanizing line back in the early '80s. He has been a loyal customer ever since.
"We have Flexospan as an approved vendor just about everywhere we work," says Tony Papalas. "In most cases we can get approval on Flexospan sheets."
That approval is based in part because of Flexospan's willingness to work with their customers to meet ASTM standards and job specs. According to Papalas estimator Jay Baksic, Flexospan "creates value-added technical specs."
He explains that technical specifications in the industrial sector are frequently written around basic manufacturers' specifications. In other words, the specs are "closed." To overcome this limitation, Flexospan's sales manager Karen Kish works with Baksic to find the right Flexospan panel for the project.
"We work closely with Karen to identify the Flexospan product that's complementary or close to the architectural standard or technical spec," Baksic says. "Frequently, we can make a strong economic case to modify the technical spec to include Flexospan products."
"Owners today are looking for that sort of economic benefit," he adds.
Both Papalas and Baksic also comment that Flexospan's ability to provide pre-engineered buildings is important to their success. The pre-engineered buildings save customers money by reducing engineering costs, according to Baksic. But perhaps the biggest benefit is how easy they are to spec out and build, according to Papalas.
"We just tell Flexospan what the building is for, give them a sketch and the dimensions and they design the building and get it approved," Papalas says.
"We've done quite a few pre-engineered building projects, including one at NorthStar in Monroe, Michigan, at Great Lakes Steel and at Rouge Steel. Flexospan provided the engineering and John A. Papalas did the erection," he adds.
Baksic comments that working with Flexospan frequently puts his company at an advantage during the bid process.
"The products are equal to or better than other products, and we get tremendous service and response time from Flexospan," he says. "And I know that if there's an emergency, our long-term relationship means that Flexospan will go out of the way to get us what we need. That's important."
Whether it's waste water treatment facilities for the city of Detroit, a new chemical plant for Monsanto, an oil storage facility for Marathon, or a manufacturing plant for Rouge Steel, John A. Papalas knows it can rely on Flexospan to help it meets its customers' needs.
"We've been working together for years and I've never found any reason to choose another vendor," Papalas says.
"It's a great company, I'll tell you that."
For more information on the John A. Papalas company, contact Tony Papalas in Lincoln Park at 313/381-5242.