Russ Ward

2020 Good News for MEM

The year 2020 has been a well-deserved punching bag. With the Covid pandemic, governmental mismanagement, the US election, forest fires from California to Australia, riots in American cities, airline crashes, earthquakes, tornados, volcanos, floods and even locust, it will go down as one of the worst years ever in many people’s minds. With bad things occurring in almost biblical proportions how can I blog 2020 Good News?

First, let me say I am purely looking at this from an economic perspective because without a doubt it has been a horrible year for many that have suffered with Covid or have lost loved ones.

A Horrible Year

2020 Good news for some but not for all.

And even sticking with just the economics let me acknowledge that for many 2020 has been a devastating mess. Especially in any small to medium sized business that thrives on in-person contact. Masks just don’t work when you are trying to eat out. Then you have all the rule changes about who can go where and do what. I am horrified to think about what the owners and employees of those businesses have been through. Beyond that, what happens if this drags on much longer? We will become a nation of chain restaurants and superstores with jobs permanently lost. The current shuttered stores will just disappear and mom and pop will simply have their hopes and dreams dashed.

2020 Good News – Silver Linings

However, in the macro 2020 becomes good when you look at humanities collective ability to thrive despite challenging times. Applications for business licenses are up surprising. We are a resilient bunch.

It is also good news if you are in very specific markets. Some have shown surprising growth despite all the bad news of the past twelve months. Who amongst us would not like to turn back the hands of time and buy stock in Netflix, Zoom, Dominoes Pizza or any number of pharmaceutical companies. They are unapologetic winners. This past year has not been bad for many with often the opposite being true.

MEM Outperforms

Modular Elevator Manufacturing thankfully falls into the category of 2020 winners despite the challenges. It begins with the fact that most building and manufacturing was considered essential when others were forced to shutdown. And then generally the entire modular industry is on a continued, decades long upswing. As stated in the recent 2020 Smart Market Report for Prefabrication and Modular Construction by Dodge Data and Analytics:

Prefabrication and modular construction are both experiencing a significant expansion of interest and use as the construction industry seeks to improve safety, productivity, quality, cost, schedule and sustainability performances while continuing to face workforce shortages, cost uncertainties and other challenges.

Stephen A. Jones – Senior Director Industry Insights Research/Dodge Date and Analytics

We at MEM can anecdotally confirm the data put forth by the experts. There was a “significant expansion of interest and use”. In the year 2020 Modular Elevator Manufacturing doubled (yes doubled) sales and production. Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Hugo Beltran is proud of the accomplishment. He said, “The 2020 results are astounding and as a result we’ve had to double the factory space and output capacity. And amazingly we are projecting another doubling for 2021 based on projects already in our pipeline.” 2020 good news!

The Pipeline is Growing

Although, Beltran would like to take credit for all the growth, he recognizes there is more at play. His team was crucial to success, but there was more. He said, “The construction industry is looking for real solutions to real problems.” And “There are economic and market fundamentals assisting us as the modular industry addresses those problems. So hard work by the MEM employees and the needs of the construction sector are pushing us forward in hitting all-time highs.”

Those needs as echoed in the Dodge report are: cost predictability, improved quality, improved safety, increased schedule certainty, and reduced waste. MEM is simply taking advantage of the opportunity by providing real solutions to longstanding problems in construction. But meeting needs must be more than marketing gimmicks or props in a storefront window or the growth will not accompany the construction market move to modular solutions.

The Difference

That is why in the modular elevator segment, some flourish and prosper like MEM, while others struggle. While some have to explain away shoddy work and poor engineering. MEM demonstrates what decades of experience can provide with superior service, workmanship and engineering. It is why some struggle with growth despite a market that is booming. While at the same time MEM discusses a Midwestern facility to meet national sales demand. MEM can say 2020 good news (at least in some respects), others are just glad to see it go.

Hopefully for all 2021 will mean a return to more prosperous times and not just some segments. But one thing for certain, if predictions are anywhere close to correct and the market continues to embrace modular solutions in construction, MEM will be a leader in the elevator industry with more growth yet to come.

If you want to be a part of the solutions provided by the modular industry we are willing to help. We will answer any of your questions and provide a Fast Track quote. If you have a low or mid-rise project just contact us. Click the button below and fill out the information. A quote will be prepared and sent to you within 24 hours.

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9 thoughts on “2020 Good News for MEM

  1. Russ Ward

    Just wanted to thank everyone for the kind words and well wishes of success. We love the questions, comments and suggestions of future blog articles, so keep them coming.

    It is the hope at Modular Elevator Manufacturing that every one has a prosperous and joyful 2021.

  2. Floyd M.

    Just an across your blog. First of all extremely interesting, I learned tons about elevators from every article I read. It is informative but doesn’t talk down to elevator novices. As a building owner it opened my eyes in a lot of respects and I wish I knew about some of the things posted before I made the mistakes I did.

    One question – Can your elevators be used across many jurisdictions or are they kind of made for California and then fit the building regardless of code? Answer here or email me.

    Great 2020 and I hope you break records again in 2021.

    • Russ Ward
      Russ Ward

      Floyd, I will reply here and email you as well. First, thanks for the great comments. I am glad that you found the articles interesting and usable. That is what we are really trying to do is let people know about the elevator industry and elevators generally. Honestly some articles are better than others.

      Also thanks for your well wishes. We work everyday to inform and build relationships that will allow us to hopefully have another record breaker next year. Time will tell but our pipeline is pretty full.

      On your question. We are based in California and as a result we build our products to withstand everything nature can throw at it including earthquakes and high winds. Also, California has some of the strictest building and elevator codes. So if we can build in California we can build just about anywhere. However, the elevator code is a very odd thing. There is no universal elevator code that covers all jurisdictions in North America. In each state they have adopted codes depending on the year of the code they want and their needs. Many states have not adopted the most recent code and so how the elevator is built is based on the code of the jurisdiction.

      These code differences can be minor or significant and can cause pricing differences. Also, in addition to the various states, some cities have their own codes that further alter the design. So the answer is both yes and no. We have a high-quality product that meets or exceeds all general codes, but then the elevators are altered in the design process depending on the individual elevator codes of the jurisdiction it is going in.

      As a result we work closely with the authorities, architects and engineers to draw up acceptable plans regardless of location. Hope this helps. Bottom line is we can put them almost anywhere. I will be in touch.

  3. Christian

    The year was a tough one for sure, but we will all get through it. Modular Elevator Manufacturing is a great company and I am glad they have been so successful this year. They have a real great bunch of people over there and they deserve all the accolades they get and hitting all their goals is a real big deal. Best of luck in the future. I hope you guys continue to grow. By the way your working in the low income housing market has been noticed. Keep it up!

  4. Lanny Brothers

    Congrats on the great year! In our high-end projects we always use MEM. They have the highest quality, knowledgeable team and save us tons of time onsite. Big shout out to Hugo!!!! Thanks for all you have done for us. Have a great 2021.

  5. Sean

    Great product and glad for the success! They come off the assembly line ready to set and start up. Always quality. Speaking from experience, they are just made faster and better. The install is easier and we always get the maintenance contract. One day all elevators will be modular for low and mid rise projects. Why on earth would anyone wrestle a rail when this is an option??? Oh well great job folks.

  6. Nick Bailey

    As a licensed conveyance mechanic in ca I worry about pre-fab/modular elevators solutions. They are assembled by factory workers that are not journeymen. That being said they have no accountability for poor work, unlike a licensed mechanic who is personally responsible to install and maintain elevators to code per the area under the most stringent regulations there in. Also although pre fabricated elevators in theory are a decent solution for the budget property owner, it undermines the high standards that the IUEC and major companies have agreed upon. I hope that pre fabricated elevators are tested and maintained by competent professionals who make the conveyance world the most safe means of travel.

    • Russ Ward
      Russ Ward

      Nick thanks for your comments. But I need to dispel a couple of the myths out there about modular elevators. When you talk about the assembly process, it is important to remember that when it comes to the hoistway assembly, there are no better qualified or licensed people than the welders fabricating the steel structure. You will never find better. That is why the hoistway is always perfectly plumb and square.
      Second, it is only personal responsibility that keeps the on-site mechanic honest in old-fashioned elevator installation. In the factory we have multiple people checking the work throughout the build, again making it a better process.
      Third, we have certified and licensed elevator mechanics. Many have tried to say we don’t but that isn’t true. Fourth a licensed mechanic ALWAYS is in charge of the set and final start up.
      Fifth, the elevator code and standards applies to every elevator we produce depending on the jurisdiction. We have a quality check list that assures a great product every time and we have an over 99% inspection passage rate on the first inspection, a rate that the old-fashioned elevator installer only dreams of. That is because of our high standards, consistent inspections and better working conditions (not assembling in a dark cramped hoistway). Maintenance and testing is always performed by licensed elevator professionals.
      Sixth, you seem to think that this is a cheap option. Again, they can be less expensive but not always. Also you will find our elevators in everything from hospitals to hotels, parking structures to school buildings. We make elevators in a smarter, safer, greener and faster way and can be used in any structure 2 to 10 stories. They are high-quality commercial elevators.
      Seventh, we have Union elevator technicians and companies that install for us. We are thankful that the IUEC is so helpful and we are looking forward to a great future!
      I do want to thank you for responding and giving me a chance to straighten out some of the myths. That sounds like a great post idea in the future.

  7. Jack Blake

    2020 has been a mixed bag. Should I feel guilty? My life has been ok and no real problems and our business is on an up tick. The trades have weathered the storm pretty well. Glad to see that MEM is doing so well. Great people and product.

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