Story casts doubt on VSI recovery efforts Responding to a recent Page 1 article ("Veka USA and VinylSource form alliance," May 29), I would appreciate the opportunity to clarify the record as it relates to decreasing sales [at VinylSource].
Let me point out, as the former national sales & marketing manager, that since arriving at VinylSource in December 1995, we saw nearly 100 percent growth in pounds shipped and 70 percent increase in revenue in the following three years (1996-98).
1999 represented a flat year for us, not a loss, with some uniquely challenging circumstances surrounding this time period. On Jan. 23, 1998, our company was sold to American Architectural Products Corp. This organization was most supportive of our continued efforts. Unfortunately, they were perceived by many of our customers and prospects as a competitor, as most of their holdings are with fabrication-based companies.
We at VSI found it difficult to convince our traditional customers that we were primarily focused on the independent fabricator, even though VinylSource's sales to AAPC subsidiaries accounted for only 5 percent of our total revenue in 1999.
Through this difficult process, management at VSI worked hard to maintain and increase our revenue and earnings base. When it was publicly disclosed late in 1999 that we were again for sale, this challenge was exacerbated.
I write this response to your article to underscore the facts behind the story. It is too easy to reach the conclusion from your article that previous efforts were lacking to rejuvenate sales of a company that has been for sale twice in the last two years. You may have also guessed there's a certain pride factor showing here as well.
I wish current ownership much success with VSI, I think there's a "diamond in the rough" waiting to prosper. This may well be the right fit.
Caption demeans girls' achievement
As a subscriber to your publication, and a female professional, I must take exception to the caption on the photograph of the first-place winners for grades nine and 10, "Girlpower," on page 44 of the May 15 issue of Plastics News.
The fact that they are girls is irrelevant to their accomplishment. If the winners were boys would the caption have read, "Boypower"? It is this writer's opinion that the caption demeans their accomplishment and fails to recognize that it was their ingenuity and teamwork that won them this honor.
Janet M. Edwards