Top Shops: Georgia Powder Coating, Top Finishing Technologies

GPC started with four employees working in a poultry processing warehouse. Now it has 45, and is recognized for its finishing technology in the Products Finishing Top Shops Benchmarking Survey.


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From left, Stanley Phillips, vice president of production; Dallas Cooley, vice president sales; and Ramiro Lopez, shift production manager.

 

When Georgia Powder Coating opened its doors in 1999, it had just four employees working out of the back of a poultry processing warehouse.

Dallas Cooley and Stanley Phillips were two of those employees, hanging parts and sweating in the sweltering heat of Gainesville, Georgia, and driving the forklift to load finished goods.

Today, the powder coating system that GPC runs in an expansive 30,000-square-foot facility is more on the advanced side. Cooley and Phillips are no longer hanging parts, but are equity owners. Cooley is vice president of sales and Phillips is vice president of production, and they are growing the business year over year.

“We’ve grown into one of the most experienced and respected metal powder coat finishing operations on the East Coast,” Cooley says. GPC now has more than 45 employees, and the shop is being recognized for its finishing technology in the Products Finishing Top Shops Benchmarking Survey.

“Our employees and management team have worked very hard to be the best in the industry, and to provide our customers with quality service,” says Counte Cooley, Dallas’ father and president of GPC. “It never ceases to amaze me the ingenuity, professionalism and enthusiasm each employee has put forth to make this the company it is today—and the company it will be in the future.”

Part of that success is traced to Phillips leading the effort to increase company sales by investing in newer equipment and technology. The shop has a five-stage zirconium wash, and both manual and automatic electrostatic spray, along with two gas-fired convection ovens and a conveyor that is over 650 feet long, as well as a batch oven that is 45 by 12 by 12 feet, plus a media blasting booth the same size.

“Our automatic gun conveyor line is for large quantity coating production, in addition to a batch operation for coating individual orders,” Dallas says. “Our proprietary processes and systems are designed to ensure that parts are done right, on time, every time, making our customer’s life a little easier.”

In 2015, GPC invested heavily in a new washer, racking and testing equipment to upgrade efficiencies and coating quality. It also implemented lean manufacturing practices throughout the facility. The company offers a guaranteed three-day on-time delivery for in-stock colors and finishes, and a 24-hour expedite service.

GPC checks in at 99 percent on-time delivery rate, and at 99.7 percent on first-pass quality yield. The shop runs about 20 hours per day.

Cooley said one of his companys proudest moments came recently when GPC was asked to powder coat several pieces that were to be used at One World Trade Center in New York City. The building stands 1,776 feet tall, and GPC’s task was to coat metal guards in the atrium of the building.

“It’s an honor,” Cooley says. “Everyone that is aware of 9/11 is keenly aware of the significance of the building and what it represents. We were all honored to be a part.” 

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