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Archive for Monday, March 25, 1996

GARAGE DOOR GROUP CONTINUES TO GO UP

March 25, 1996

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The rollers are greased at The Garage Door Group, where business continues to expand.

Employees of The Garage Door Group showed off their facility in the East Hills Business Park recently at the company's first open house for families.

Employment has risen to 238 at the manufacturing facility since December 1989 when the plant opened with approximately 50 employees. Jerry Pope, manager of manufacturing services, said the increase in employees brought about a greater emphasis on employee communication and Kirsten Krug, the new employee and community relations administrator.

"Kirsten handles our newsletter, employee recognition programs and the open house," Pope said. "Our people need to share where they work, and the turnout of the open house was beyond what we anticipated."

Krug said the first-time event was a success, with 350 guests.

"It was wonderful," she said. "We were really pleased."

Krug started at The Garage Door Group in December and was previously vice president of Kansas University Credit Union.

"It's a great job and I'm glad I got it," she said. "Hiring me full-time for the importance of employee communication speaks highly of this company."

The Garage Door Group manufactures commercial and residential garage doors, which are distributed by Amarr Garage Doors of Winston-Salem, N.C., and Delden Manufacturing of Kansas City, Mo. The two companies co-own The Garage Door Group.

Sales have increased by 25 percent per year over the last four years, Krug said. Each garage door manufactured in the plant is already sold, and many of them are shipped internationally.

Eight engineers keep things on track to make assembly and product run smoothly. They're currently working on an expansion project for an additional insulated door line and the use of windows in current products.

Pope said the facility is near capacity again following a building addition in 1995. Originally the manufacturing facility occupied 120,000 square feet; it now is 250,000 square feet.

"We foresee another addition and have an option on additional property east of the business park," Pope said.

The manufacturer generates a payroll of over $6.5 million annually.

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