Business Monday

Shower Doors & More in Fort Lauderdale growing fast

Larry and Page Giacin with their children Tyler and Brooke (center), and their employees in the manufacturing area at Shower Doors & More in Fort Lauderdale.
Larry and Page Giacin with their children Tyler and Brooke (center), and their employees in the manufacturing area at Shower Doors & More in Fort Lauderdale. ctrainor@miamiherald.com

Company: Shower Doors & More Inc.

Location: Fort Lauderdale.

What it is: A shower-door manufacturing facility that offers shower doors in a variety of styles: framed in aluminum, “unframed,” semi-frameless, and frameless bypass doors — that is, doors that slide past each other. The company is also a glass tempering and fabrication services shop.

The combination of these two services are what make the business especially convenient to customers, Shower Doors & More executive Page Giacin said. Most South Florida shower-door companies offer one or the other, she said.

(“Fabrication” means drilling holes in glass, making notches for hinges, polishing edges or making bevel edges. “Tempering” is when glass is heated to 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit; that way, the glass will no longer break in big, dangerous pieces but instead will crumble into tiny pieces.)

Management team:

Larry Giacin, president.

Page Giacin, vice president of operations/marketing.

Number of employees: 25

Website: www.showerdoors.com

Address: 1196 NW 23rd Ave., Fort Lauderdale

How it started: The Giacins started the business nearly 20 years ago, at the end of 1996. Page had worked in the communications department at Blockbuster Entertainment in Fort Lauderdale, but when the company headquarters moved to Dallas that year, the Giacins remained and began their own business.

“My husband Larry and I were already partners in life so we became partners in business too,” she said in an email.

That year, when the internet was still nascent, they also purchased the domain name showerdoors.com. “I thought, what the heck!” Page said. “Best ten bucks ever spent!!”

Their family has grown along with the company. “My kids grew up in the business. Especially my son Tyler who is in college at Adelphi University studying business. He works with us during summer and winter breaks. My daughter Brooke is in high school, and she on occasion will make handle kits to help out,” Page said.

How the business grew: The business began in Hollywood, on Hayes Street, as a retail/wholesale supply shop but then developed into a shower-door-manufacturing facility selling only to wholesale customers. After the business outgrew the 6,000-square-foot space, it moved to its current 32,000-square-foot location in 2001.

Shower Doors & More has added fabrication services, and this year, tempering services as well. The Giacins have found that owning the means to deliver the two services — for which they had formerly contracted with vendors — made more financial sense and allowed them to better control their destiny.

Customers: The company sells mostly to other glass shops, tile companies, plumbers, contractors and exporters. “Occasionally we sell to bold do-it-yourselfers,” Page said. Shower Doors & More also tempers the glass of other fabrication businesses. The company ships up the East Coast and across the country.

Competitors: Competitors include Interglass Corp. in Miami, ASG Glass Fabricators in Margate, and Magic Mirror & Shower Enclosures, Inc., based in West Palm Beach. “There are several small companies in the tricounty area that fabricate some by hand, but only six companies that have tempering ovens — four in Miami and two in Broward,” Page said. “We are the farthest north and we are second-largest oven out of the six.”

Milestones:

2014: Fabrication services were bolstered. The company added polishers, cutting tables, drills, and beveling machinery to further enhance the product line and increase convenience for customers. “We purchased equipment and machinery along with inventing aluminum dies that are patent and only are made exclusively for us,” Page said.

2016: Tempering services were added, a move that’s expected to significantly boost revenue. A key to that was acquiring a 96-inch by 144-inch state-of-the-art Glaston tempering oven in January. The brand-new oven from Finland is the fastest in the industry and offers “incredible quality” and efficiency, Page said. “The tempering oven was a game-changer for us because we no longer had to rely on outside vendors,” she said. “We can turn tempered glass around faster than any other company,” she asserted.

Revenues:

Expected in 2016: More than $7 million.

2015: More than

$3.5 million (estimated)

2014: More than

$2 million (estimated)

2013: About $1.7 million

Keys to success: Page says the company has no debt and is self-sufficient, and she credits “Larry and I together with our team of top-notch employees” for the company’s success. “But our customers grew up with us over past 20 years. We worked with our customers because we understand the industry’s expectations and stop at nothing to make our customers happy. Our customers stuck with us along the way as we grew and perfected our products.”

Strategy for next steps: The Giacins are contemplating options including the possibilities of franchising and expanding throughout the county in strategic locations, and possibly beyond Florida. Stay tuned!!” Page said.

Rory Clarke

If you have a candidate for Small Business Spotlight, please email rclarke@miamiherald.com. Companies must be willing to disclose revenues and have recently accomplished a significant milestone in their development.

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