Orlando, Fla. — Six months after Novik Inc. acquired Exteria Building Products, the new owners announced a dual-brand strategy and a name change for their premium synthetic shake and stone.
“Today is our coming out party. Exteria is going away and Tando will be the pro-end building product,” Tando Building Products President Ralph Bruno told Plastics News on Jan. 11 at the International Builders' Show at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando.
Bruno was previously Novik's president. He said the Novik brand of polypropylene shake and stone will continue but more in the do-it-yourself channel, through retailers such as Menard's and Lowe's, while Tando will sell through lumber and building material dealers.
“Tando takes the higher-end Novik technology and higher-end Exteria technology and gives us a new category of product,” Bruno said. “We thought it wise to rebrand it. It's different than Novik and Exteria.”
He described the technology as a proprietary Novik process in which a polymer shake is infused with real wood stain and a proprietary Exteria UV coating that has a 10-year history without one fade claim paid.
“After the acquisition, the two R&D teams came together and looked at product lines, technologies and what each company had,” Bruno said. “They determined Novik probably had the best stain technology in the industry — a way of applying stain to polypropylene. It's a true wood stain and a colorant. And, Exteria had a UV coating that went well with the stain technology and gave it more of a matte finish rather the glossy.”
The product line includes TandoShake, which mimics wood, and TandoStone, which also is made of PP and has not only the look of stone and stone veneer, but also the feel thanks to two layers of grit.
“They took the best of the best for this Tando pro line,” Bruno said.
The Novik DIY brand of stone made from PP won't have the grit or UV-coating “enhancements,” he said, but it will be easy to install.
“If you're a do-it-yourselfer who has an ugly space under the deck or a cracked foundation, you can literally apply it yourself,” Bruno said.
Novik also still has a shake product with the stain technology, but it won't have the Exteria UV protection like TandoShake.
“We're going to continue to sell Stain Natural by Novik. It does well. But now we're having the signature stain line,” Bruno said.
Novik is owned by the private investment firm Clearview Capital LLC, which created the Azek brand of cellular PVC trim, deck and railing products. Bruno also was part of the ownership group that launched Azek.
Right now, the largest PP shake manufacturer is CertainTeed, Bruno said, which has a product called Cedar Impressions, but he said Tando products are different.
“They're very strong in PP shake and they're a vinyl siding manufacturer,” Bruno said of CertainTeed. “Their shakes match their vinyl siding. Because we don't make vinyl siding our color palette is more stain colors and natural wood. We're looking to displaces stained wood.”
Tando was described as “the hats and shoes” of cladding by some of the sales team. Housing can be outfitted with any other siding in between, such as vinyl, brick, stucco, engineered wood and fiber cement. TandoStone would eliminate fiber cement's moisture issues at the ground level, they added.
“We've heard all along that the use of mixed materials is growing,” Bruno said, pointing to a company survey completed after the Exteria acquisition that indicates the trend will continue.
“Of the 1,800 respondents, more than 90 percent said the trend is here and growing. Not half, over 90 percent. We can share that data when we talk to customers.”