Skip to content

JELD-WEN: What Others Didn’t See

September 23, 2013

There are opportunities everywhere. The thing is people don’t often see them. There are also those who do see the opportunity but just didn’t put the right amount of effort to see the project become a success.

JELD-WEN is a company that was a product of a group of people seeing a golden opportunity. The firm was founded by Richard “Dick” Wendt. He learned managing a manufacturing company through his father Lester Wendt who was a Caradco executive.

Caradco was based in Iowa and the company sent Dick to help run the firm’s millwork plant in Klamath Falls, Oregon in 1957. Things didn’t go exactly as planned for Caradco as they decided to sell the plant at auction. Dick and four business partners purchased a good deal of the assets on October 25, 1960. They named the new company JELD-WEN.

JELD-WEN was a name already used by the Wendt family on their small family retreat farm located in Dubuque, Iowa.  The company started with 15 employees and immediately earned a name as a producer of reliable products. Only two years later, JELD-WEN was doing good enough that it was able to acquire new manufacturing facilities and expand the products it offered.

One of the key factors for the company’s success was to judiciously use every bit of raw material that entered its doors. This philosophy is still very much in place today. The firm did not forget its local roots. In 1969 the JELD-WEN Foundation was established which offers grants, scholarships and other financial assistance.

Today the company is a leading manufacturer of windows and doors; the company also sells aluminum, vinyl, and wood windows, interior and exterior doors, garage doors, swinging and sliding patio doors, and door frames and moldings. It employs around 20,000 people globally and operates more than 100 manufacturing and distribution sites. It sells its products in around 20 countries mostly in the Americas, Asia, Europe and Australia.

This company began when a group of people saw an opportunity on an auctioned planted and successfully carried out their plans.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: