As part of our Made In Oconee campaign, we talked to USBI Inc.’s Erin Roussey.
Tell us about USBI, Inc.?
US Building Innovations Inc. (USBI), is a company that specializes in the production of advanced coatings. We provide the latest innovations in Easy-To-Clean surface technology. Our easy-to-apply EZ Armor systems are the new industry standard of nanotechnology surface treatments. They are 100% Made in the USA which means that it’s quality that you can depend on.
What is your role at USBI Inc.?
I am the President of USBI, Inc. – this means I have the responsibility to make sure we continue to be a part of the continued economic success of the Upstate.
Remind us why you chose to locate at the Newry Site.
I moved to Newry a few years ago, and I thought it would be a good way to reuse the old Newry School building. After we complete the $1M renovation and new construction projects, it will be home to our research and development lab, warehouse and distribution space and manufacturing operations. We chose Newry because this site allowed us to expand our Upstate operations, while finding a use for an abandoned building in our community.
What is your goal with the Newry School Site?
My plans have altered some, but my ultimate goal is the creation of 31 local jobs at the former Newry School site. This is still my main commitment and hopefully with some of my other new projects it will be even more.
What is Verick Int.?.
Verick Int. ( verick.com ) is our new partner company which has been established for 23 years. They have heavily impacted the Canadian adhesives and sealants market, generating 20-24 million per year in annual sales. However, most of their products are made in the US. One of which is made in Greenville, SC.
How was this partnership created?
It is important to me to give credit to the state programs for small business and the trade missions with the SC Department of Commerce and the US Commercial Service that helped make this agreement possible.
What are the Department of Commerce Organized Trade Missions?
The SC Department of Commerce and the US Commercial Service trade missions are overseas programs for U.S. firms that wish to explore and pursue export opportunities by meeting directly with potential clients in their markets.
What do the trade missions entail?
The missions include one-on-one meetings with foreign industry executives and government officials, networking events, briefings and roundtables with the legal and business community on local business practices and opportunities, site visits to local, as well as media coverage. There are STEP and SCOPE grants available from SC and the SBA to qualifying businesses that help cover a lot of the cost.
What have been the benefits of this partnership?
The benefits have been twofold. On one side, Verick is now the master distributor for all of our coatings in Canada, and will help us develop that market. On the other, they gave us an arsenal of more than 30,000 new products, combined with their purchasing power and full support. We are now able to provide the same savings to US companies that Verick has provided to their Canadian customers for their adhesives and sealants needs.
What is next for USBI?
We hope to succeed by providing the same services as Verick to the Upstate and very soon throughout the Carolinas and Georgia, and the central Mid West. We are in the process of opening new sales offices in Charleston, Atlanta and Coldwater, MI. Our goal is to be providing businesses with adhesives and sealants in 6 states by the end of 2017.