D&WC: Why did you decide to join AVI-Asia? How do you hope to contribute to its growth and success?
Richard Gaskey: I accepted the vice president’s position because I felt this was one of the few shutter companies that had the necessary experience in the industry to achieve its goals, had unlimited potential for growth, had solid business relationships in China to assure quality products, and I felt AVI-Asia’s business model and ethics were a good fit for myself to bring to the American public the truly best wood or poly imported shutter program with the feel, touch, reliability and customer service of a domestic American shutter company.
By contributing my knowledge, experience, hard work ethic, open-door policy for employees I hope to instill my belief that it is the assembling of a team of the right people with the right attitude that truly makes a great company successful.
D&WC: Since assuming the position of vice president, what areas of the company have received your primary attention? Why?
,b>Gaskey: Primarily, my attention has been focused on our import division overseas and new product development.
After the first of the year, we will be launching our new imported poly shutter and a poly components program.
D&WC: What do you perceive as AVI-Asia’s strengths in the marketplace?
Gaskey: The company’s solid 20-year-old relationships in Asia and its understanding of the importance of being able to quickly adapt to the changing shutter industry while maintaining profitability have led me to believe this company will establish a strong position in the market.
D&WC: What are your goals for AVI-Asia? Where do you see the company one year from now? Five years from now?
Gaskey: Ultimately, my goal is to grow AVI-Asia’s profitably into a major supplier in the import shutter business in the U.S.
A year from now: I’d like to see AVI-Asia have distributors across the United States selling imported poly shutters in addition to the imported wood shutters they have been selling for the past three years.
Looking five years down the road, the plan is for AVI-Asia to become the most trusted reliable source for imported wood or poly shutters—for residential or commercial applications.
D&WC: Please provide a general description of AVI-Asia’s product lines and services. How much of sales are residential versus commercial?
Gaskey: AVI-Asia is a one-stop source for high-quality, competitively priced imported wood or poly shutters. AVI-Asia will also be launching a new component program in the first quarter of 2008.
Currently AVI-Asia’s sales are all residential. We will be looking into the opportunities for commercial business this coming year.
D&WC: Please tell us a little about yourself. What is your background and experience? In what area does your expertise lie—marketing, management, operations?
Gaskey: For the last five years I’ve worked with another import shutter program in the United States from its inception to where it is today. While there, I also developed its residential and commercial divisions and managed and directed all aspects of developing its poly shutter program domestically.
During this time I worked to open manufacturing branches in Houston, TX, and Davenport FL, while managing and directing the startup of the company’s import wood shutter program in China. I also managed and directed the start up of it commercial division, which included development of two shutter programs. Finally, I developed the company’s first all-shutters Sweets binder for architects across the U.S.
My personal expertise lies in corporate management and sales and marketing and innovation.