Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Volume 31 - Stowe Mountain Lodge Project

As our website,, states Independence2, LLC is very proud to announce our involvement, with two of our Distributor Partners, Mr. James Sandy, President of Total Resources, Niles, Ohio, and Mr. Lee Guterba, Owner of S.R.E., located in Columbiana, Ohio, who will be supplying most of the Division VIII products, on the Stowe Mountain Lodge project in cooperation with Hunt Construction Group, the General Contractor.

Destination Hotels & Resorts will manage this luxury lodge located at the base of Stowe Mountain Resort's Mount Mansfield, Vermont's highest peak. This lodge will feature stone, timber and forged iron work, and each guestroom will take advantage of the surrounding mountain vistas with large windows and oversized balconies. The lodge also includes shared ownership residences and will feature an 18-hole mountain golf course. Other amenities will include an upscale retail plaza, an outdoor ice skating rink and signature restaurants as well as a separate SPA facility expected to be a premier boutique feature of this property.

The Stowe Mountain Lodge project is another prime example, along with the IUPUI Student Center, of Independence2, LLC's Premier Distributor Partnerships Program, which pulls together various 'project work' to benefit Distributors and Independence2, LLC's other Partners and Industry Relationship Contacts, who would like to participate in bidtype project work in conjunction with the General Contractor, architect and design firm.

It seems to me that this is a perfect example of respecting and enhancing the supply chain. If you (as a reader of this issue) are a distributor within the commercial construction market, when is the last time a manufacturer/supplier presented you with an opportunity to enhance your business? If you are involve with architectural hardware, as a distributor - contract door hardware house or locksmith, and carry products like Falcon Lock, Schlage, Dor-O-Matic, Norton, LCN Closers, and Von Duprin, Global Door and others, how do you tolerate these manufacturers selling to the 'Big Box Houses'?

In my Blog, Volume 15 - 'Big Boxes getting bigger', I discuss the future impact on the Contract Door Hardware Distributors and locksmiths within this supply chain and the negative effect of manufacturers/suppliers attempting to eliminate these two vital areas of the Division VIII supply chain. It is very evident on where the 'Big Boxes' are going with their Business Strategy. Although it is always the manufacturer/supplier's decision on the sales strategy a company makes, as it should be; the difficulty with Division VIII is that although it (usually) only makes up 2-4% of the project, it (unfortunately) makes up 25% of the 'grief factor' of a project, mostly due to the fact that even large General Contractors don't understand the intricacies of the Door and Hardware Industry with Distributors at the mercy of manufacturing schedules, delays, incomplete orders, submittal time-lines, ordering processes, etc. etc. etc. Nevertheless without these vital people involved in this supply chain, even more so these days with 'drawings' that are never completed, inadequacies of a door and hardware schedule and outdated specifications, projects regardless of size would never be completed.

Yet, we have top-line oriented manufacturers/suppliers whose business strategy is being executed at the expense of this customer group. Why, as an entrepreneurial business group, would one continually feed those that are positioning themselves to destroy your very business?

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