GenFlex Celebrates 40 Years of Business

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The year 2021 marks four decades of business for GenFlex, a leader in commercial roofing product development, distribution, and training. To date, more than a billion square feet of GenFlex roofing membrane has been installed across North America! You'll find GenFlex products covering structures from Virginia to California, including high schools, churches, apartment complexes, stadiums, and more.

In honor of the occasion, we spoke with two GenFlex veterans who've watched the company and product catalog grow and evolve, and their teammates grow alongside it, too. 

Rewind! A Look Back at GenFlex

While GenFlex's history with EPDM systems dates back to 1981, the company's roots trace back much further to 1915 with General Tire. General Tire was founded in Akron, Ohio, and was an early competitor of Firestone Tire. The company pioneered advancements in tires, rubber, polymers, and plastics, and these advancements easily translated to the world of commercial roofing. 

Once ingrained in the roofing industry, GenFlex was quick to improve product formulations and methods. Though small, the company moved fast. 

GenFlex was a small company competing against industry giants, remembers Ken Crocker, a GenFlex veteran and current Division Manager of Technical Services for Firestone Building Products. Being a smaller company, GenFlex had nimble teams. People grasped every opportunity they could to create custom construction details or write project-specific specifications in a matter of hours, or do anything else that was required to stand out above our one-size-fit-all competitors.  

Crocker was instrumental in creating and implementing customer-first policies and procedures during this time, many of which were later adopted by GenFlex's parent company, Firestone Building Products. 

In the early days, GenFlex was a family, too. It's where spouses met, children played together at company barbecues, and employees were challenged to fail, learn, and innovate as quickly as possible. 

The company's agility and speed to market led to many firsts, including being the first to launch EPDM seam tape, develop a 12-foot-wide TPO sheet that meets industry code requirements, release a Peel & Stick System, and introduce FlexWhite EPDM.

When Firestone Building Products acquired GenFlex in 2006, GenFlex merged its flexibility with the resources of Firestone to make both companies better.  

What's Next? A Look Ahead for GenFlex

Everything we do at GenFlex points toward one goal: to empower the success of our contractors and their business by providing high-quality, easy-to-use products that deliver value season after season. 

So what's next for GenFlex to support this goal? GenFlex is moving toward being the complete provider for contractors, explains Brian Alexander, Global Director of Research and Development at Firestone Building Products. That means everything a contractor needs is delivered at one time, on one truck. 

GenFlex is also always looking to expand its product base, accessories, and training tools. This commitment includes things like new training videos to explain the ins and outs of Quick Jet Spray Adhesive, new membrane sizes to help contractors acquire different jobs, and self-adhering EPDM membranes that install 4.6x faster than traditional methods so contractors can take on more projects.

GenFlex is well-positioned for commercial roofing needs in 2021 and beyond. 

“Residential construction is booming right now and likewise, so is non-residential construction. Buildings such as hotels, hospitals, warehouses, distribution centers, call centers, educational facilities can't afford disruptions and  GenFlex is here to support and supply roofing contractors with easy-to-install systems that deliver long-term value to the building owner.” says Patrick Thompson, Director, Channel Marketing. 

You're a Part of GenFlex's Future 

Contractors and building owners can continue to expect great things from GenFlex, and there's plenty to look forward to. 

As a contractor, partnering with GenFlex gives you access to more than industry-leading roofing materials. You also gain access to a team that wants to see your expertise and business grow just as much as you do. And as a building owner, you can continue to expect material advancements to support faster installations, fewer to no operation interruptions, exceptional warranty coverage, and ultimately — a better return on your roof investment. 

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