Guardian Industries

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Guardian Industries[1]
Industry Glass, Auto Parts, Fiberglass & Building Products
Founded 1932[2]
Headquarters Auburn Hills, Michigan, USA
Products flat glass, automotive glass, building products, automotive trim
Number of employees
18,000 (2013)- 21 countries, 5 continents

Guardian Industries is a privately held industrial manufacturer of glass, automotive and building products based in Auburn Hills, Michigan. The company manufactures float glass, fabricated glass products, fiberglass insulation and building materials for commercial, residential and automotive applications. The company employs more than 18,000 people and has present activities in North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.[3]


Guardian Industries was founded in 1932 as Guardian Glass Company. The company was originally established as a small windshield fabricator. In 1957, the same year Guardian filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, William Davidson[4] became president of Guardian, 10 years after he graduated from the University of Michigan in 1947. After three years in 1960, Guardian came out of bankruptcy. In 1968, the company officially changed its name to Guardian Industries Corp. and under William Davidson’s leadership; they went public with the initial trade valued at $17 a share. The following year Guardian began trading on the American Stock Exchange.

In 1970, Guardian started producing flat glass with the newly invented float glass process. They opened their first production line in Carleton, Michigan and today the company counts 28 float glass lines and 13 glass fabrication plants around the world. In 1973 it began trading on the New York Stock Exchange.[5] From on 1980, Guardian started to diversify its activities and they started the production of fiberglass insulation. The European market entry took place in 1981 when the company opened their production line in Bascharage, Luxembourg. Further plants came up in Germany, Spain, England, Hungary and Poland. The company went back to a privately held company in 1985 after 17 years as a public company.

In the 1990s, Guardian could note down an upswing both in the sectors construction materials and automotive products due to several takeovers and acquisitions: Automotive Moulding Company Warren, Michigan; Lab. Radio from Valencia, Spain; Builder Marts of America (BMA) and Cameron Ashley Building Products (which is now the Guardian Building Products Distribution) in 2000.[6] In 1995, corporate headquarters moved from Novi to their present location in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

The takeover of Siegel-Robert Automotive in 2008 led to the formation of SRG Global.

Business divisions[edit]

Guardian’s activities can be divided into three main sections:

(I) Glass products: Those are the registered trademarks belonging to the float glass section:

SatinDeco: Acid-etched glass
DecoCristal: Lacquered float glass painted on one side with colored, organic paint.
ShowerGuard: A special glass for showers which preserves the glass from stains caused by hard water, heat, humidity and cleaning products to maintain the glass.
DiamondGuard: The glass has a permanent protective coating which is ten times more scratch resistance than uncoated glass.
  • Laminated Glass: Two or more panes of glass bonded together by a durable plastic interlayer.
  • UltraMirror: Reflective and durable mirror that protects against corrosion, chemicals, moisture, and abrasion.
  • EcoGuard: Low-iron glass for solar energy systems [7]

(II) Automotive products : Guardian serves the automotive market with Automotive Glass[8] and SRG Global,a Guardian company and Tier 1 supplier of grilles and exterior/interior trim.[9] SRG Global is one of the world's largest manufacturers of chrome plated plastic parts, used by virtually every car manufacturer in the world. Guardian also supplies windshields and replacement glass for cars and RVs through its Automotive Aftermarket.[10]

(III) Building products : Guardian Building Products (GBP) is one of the largest manufacturers of fiberglass insulation[11] and is among the largest building material distribution networks in North America. It has a growing presence in the global building materials industry, too. GBP claims to have more than 30,000 customers in the residential and light commercial construction industries.[12]

Those are the present (2014) leader persons:

  • Ron Vaupel, President and CEO, Guardian Industries
  • Kevin Baird, President, Global Flat Glass Group, Guardian Industries
  • Steven Ziessler, President, Guardian Building Products
  • Dave Prater, President and CEO, SRG Global
  • Mike Morrison, President, Guardian Automotive


Guardian Website[edit]