Andersen Launches New EcoExcel Program
Seeing new demand and a "huge opportunity" resulting from the stimulus package tax credits for energy efficient windows and doors, Andersen Corp. is launching the new EcoExcel brand for products in its line that meet the criteria. To be supported by a "huge integrated campaign," the new brand also looks beyond the tax credit to position Andersen at the forefront of energy efficiency for the long term, according to Stephanie Miller, director of marketing.
For the short term, the EcoExcel brand is designed to make it easy for consumers and trade professionals to understand what products qualify for the tax credits. Following passage of the stimulus law and the tax credit criteria that were part of it, there was a great deal of confusion and uncertainty in the market, Miller notes. The window and door maker saw an increase in calls coming from both consumers and trade customers, "all of them with questions," she reports.
“As the leader in the window and door industry, we intend to eliminate the confusion,” adds J Glasnapp, vice president of corporate sustainability and quality. "Customers buying any product from the EcoExcel energy performance package have our assurance that they will meet the tax credit performance criteria.”
The company's trade customers also wanted support, Miller notes. Particularly in this tough market, Andersen's dealers and trade customers were eager to get out and promote the availability of products that qualify on the local level. "I definitely think they see an opportunity," she says. Having already rolled out the program with many of its dealers, Andersen has received "fantastic feedback and support," she continues. "They are ready to partner with us."
The EcoExcel program cover products in the Andersen 400 Series and 100 Series, highlighting such energy efficiency features as the company's SmartSun glass, its Low-E4 glass package, its PermaShield cladding and its Fibrex composite framing. Just as the StormWatch sub-brand supports a particular set of features and benefits available to meet the needs of coastal applications, the EcoExcel brand will highlight energy efficient features and benefits across the company's product lines.
Looking beyond the tax credit period, Andersen sees energy efficiency continuing to gain importance in the window and door market. As energy efficiency technology continues to evolve at the company, Andersen plans to continue highlighting its latest features and benefits on this front under the EcoExcel brand name. "Whether it's energy efficiency, green or issues of sustainability, it's not going away," Miller notes.
"We feel we have a proven record on innovation," she continues, "and we strive to continue improving the energy efficiency of our products."
Looking more near term, Shawn Ahearns, Andersen marketing manager, points out that many customers, and the industry as a whole, have reported a signficant uptick in demand as a result of the stimulus. Further he predicts that if the economy continues to stabilize and people start to feel more secure about their jobs, 2010 could provide an even greater opportunity as even more homeowners will be likely to try and take advantage of the short-term tax credits.