EXECUTIVE OUTLOOK | PAUL VALLE, DEMILEC
the focus was on closed cell technology
for the Canadian market, but in 1997,
Demilec expanded into the U.S. market and constructed their first plant
in 1999 in Arlington, Texas, followed
by the opening of a second automated state-of-the-art facility in Texas in
2014. With our entrance into the U.S.
market 18 years ago, we expanded our
focus to include open cell technology in
our U.S. operations and now have one
of the most comprehensive offerings
of open-cell, closed-cell, and specialty
SPF insulation in North America.
SFM: What has been the company’s recipe
for continued growth and success from the
beginning until now?
PV: Demilec has always prided itself
on being at the leading edge of the SPF
technology, by not only being an early
adopter of new and improved chemical
components and formulations, but also
developing and promoting new applications in residential and commercial
construction. In addition to this, we
have passionately pursued more environmentally friendly and sustainable
solutions for our proprietary polyol
formulations by being early adopters of
each successive blowing agent conversion and developing polyol resins with
the highest levels of renewable and sustainable content in the industry.
We also recognized from early on in our
history that installing SPF insulation
requires a much higher level of skill and
technical knowledge at the applicator
level than hanging fiberglass batts or
blowing loose-fill or cellulose insula-
tion. For this reason, Demilec has made
significant investments over the years
in providing the highest level of techni-
cal support for our customers, through
our seasoned team of field TSRs (tech-
nical support representatives). This
group provides national coverage and
the highest levels of personal support
for our contractors, whenever they are
faced with issues related to equipment,
product installation, specifications or
on-the-job training of applicators.
SFM: What specific markets does Demilec
serve and target?
PV: Demilec primarily focuses on supplying open-cell and closed-cell SPF
solutions for the residential and commercial markets, both light and heavy.
This includes new construction, retrofit,
and remodel applications. In addition
to this, we also supply a broad range of
specialty foam and polyurea products
specifically designed for use in agricultural, industrial, oil & gas, and OEM
SFM: What has activity in the international market been like as of late?
We do export our technologies to many
international markets, but given recent
political and economic events in the rest
of the world and a weakening of international currencies against the dollar,
we are seeing a leveling of demand for
our products outside of North America, so strategically we are directing
most of our energy towards promoting
the growth of SPF in the more vibrant
North American construction markets.
SFM: You’ve recently been recognized
by the American Chemistry Council for
innovation in plastic recycling – what
specific products does Demilec develop
using recycled plastic bottles?
PV: Demilec is one of the only independent SPF manufacturers to produce
its own polyol resins, which gives us a
lot more flexibility to work with diverse raw materials in our formulations.
Over a decade ago, it was the vision of
our founder Jacques Lariviere, to create
a product with a much higher recycled
content and he tasked the Demilec
R&D team to develop a system to convert polyethylene terephthalate (PET)
scrap into polyols, for use in our spray
foam insulation products. Since then,
we have recycled more than 300 million plastic bottles into our SPF insulation products and we expect to recycle
more than 35 million plastic bottles
into high-performing closed-cell spray
foam insulation in 2015.
SFM: What prompted Demilec’s recent
visit to the White House?
PV: As a result of our efforts to develop products using next-generation
blowing agents with virtually no GWP
(Global Warming Potential), we were
invited to attend the White House
“DEMILEC PRIMARILY FOCUSES ON SUPPLYING OPEN AND CLOSED-CELL SPF SOLUTIONS FOR THE RESIDENTIAL AND COMMERCIAL MARKETS.” PHOTOSCOURTESYofD