FEATURED BUSINESS: Glideware “best of” Las Vegas show
A Grand Junction couple with a great idea for organizing kitchens took their designs to Las Vegas last month and bested more than 350 vendors from around the world to receive “Best of Kitchen Innovation” at the 2014 Kitchen and Bath Industry Show.
The exposure in Las Vegas took the small, mom-and-pop manufacturing business called Glideware to the next level as hundreds of orders poured in since the first week of February, co-owner David Hall said.
The mom and pop are David and Jenny Hall, who patented their idea for a space-saving design last year. The Halls have two children, whom they care for after finishing their day jobs but before they start their night jobs processing orders for Glideware.
David Hall is a construction manager at Shaw Construction. Jenny Hall is a real estate agent for Bray Real Estate.
Glideware is the couple’s innovative idea for a simple and convenient space-saving product that easily installs inside just about any kitchen cabinet. A vertical rail system slides in and out of the cabinet after being mounted to the inside top. Pots, pans and other utensils can be hung from stainless steel hooks mounted to the center of the rail.
The product sells for around $200 and has many applications both inside and outside the kitchen, Hall said.
“Glideware makes better use of cabinet space, allows for easy organization, and makes it simple to select a pot or pan without excessive noise,” the judges at the Las Vegas show said.
The cost to attend the show included $3,800 for the booth space plus hundreds of dollars for materials and many hours of labor to design and build a display for the 100-square-foot exhibition space.
The payoff was worth the investment, Hall said.
More than 1,800 people, including dozens of distributors and custom cabinet shop owners, checked in at the Glideware booth during the three-day show to request more information about pricing and products, he said.
Many of those requests turned into orders, Hall said.
The show accelerated the Halls’ business plan, which launched with a Kickstarter campaign last summer.
Kickstarter helped the couple raise more than $35,000 to purchase stainless steel hooks and cast a die mold for hooks needed to build cabinets. The Halls were able to raise the needed money in 30 days.
Next, they needed a manufacturer. They looked first locally, but were forced to secure one in Ohio that was equipped to turn out hundreds of cabinets on two weeks notice. Local manufacturers did not have the capacity to move quickly on the orders, Hall said. After the first cabinets were built, the business plan called on Glideware to offer the cabinets for direct sale to customers online.
Hall said he configured the Glideware website to process orders just before leaving on a vacation to Central America late last year.
A loud ding from his cell phone notified Hall poolside in Costa Rica that the couple’s first Glideware cabinet was sold.
The next step in the Halls’ plan is to wholesale Glideware to cabinet and custom woodworking shops. This part of the plan got off to a rousing start in the month since the trade show ended, Hall said.
On Monday, Hall said he accepted a small order for 20 cabinets from Canada’s leading distributor of furniture, kitchen cabinet and woodworking hardware, Richilieu Hardware.
Inking deals with large distributors for big orders is the Halls’ next challenge. The Richilieu order is a good start, David Hall said.