Planning Ahead

We’re nearing the end of 2020—and for most of us, we’ll be glad to see it go, as we look forward to the good that 2021 (hopefully) will bring. And let me add, I hope you all had a happy and healthy Thanksgiving and are looking forward to a safe and festive holiday season ahead.

By this point, the end of November, in any other year, I’d probably have a lot to look back on as far as travel, conferences, trade shows, etc. Not true in 2020. I’m not sure yet when I will travel next year, but I think we can all agree that virtual events, which took off this year, will continue to happen.

While a virtual event can’t replace all the benefits and networking that come from meeting face-to-face, they have filled a very important need this year. And, perhaps, even when we can all gather together again, comfortably and safely, there will still be meetings and presentations that can happen from the comfort of home or office.

Earlier this year, USGlass magazine, along with our sister publication [DWM] magazine, were co-hosts with the Finishing Contractors Association International of GlassCon Global VE-Glass Expo VE. The two-day virtual educational and networking event, combined the GlassCon Global educational program with the Glass Expos event. If you missed it, take a look at our event recap here.

During that virtual event, I had the opportunity to moderate an interesting and informative panel discussion that focused on what to know before buying machinery. I was honored to have some great panelists, both glass fabricators and machinery suppliers, talk with me about their dos and donts, best practices and advice for navigating a successful machinery purchase. John Dwyer, president, Syracuse Glass Co.; Nancy Mammaro, CEO of Mappi; Louis Moreau, head of innovation and technology with AGNORA; and Mike Rosato, vice president of sales, western region, HHH Equipment Resource, a Salem Fabrication Technologies Group company, all sat down at their computers and logged in with me for the live session.

Now, as many companies are starting to think about future machinery investments—particularly automation and robotics—we’re excited to share that webinar with you. You can sign up to join us tomorrow, December 1, 2020, at 3:30 p.m. EST for this free webinar, “You’re Purchasing New Equipment – What to Know Before You Buy.”

Topics that will be covered include understanding customers’ needs; recognizing when the time is right to invest in new equipment; opportunities in upgrading versus buying new; and much more. The webinar is free to attend, but advance registration is required. You can register online here.

The information that will be presented is valuable to anyone considering a new machine. And according to a survey conducted earlier this year by USGlass in partnership with the Key Media & Research (KMR) research department, a lot of companies are in fact planning to do so. Our survey found that 90% of fabricators are expecting to make a major machinery purchase in the next five years. That’s a steady number, even considering the slowdown we’ve seen due to the pandemic. You can read that full survey article here in the August 2020 USGlass.

If your plans for 2021 include a new machine, I hope you’ll sign up and join us tomorrow. As always, I would love to hear from you, whether you’d like to share your experiences buying a new machine or what you hope to buy next year. Feel free to email me at or comment below.