North American Roofing
- Written by: Molly Shaw
- Produced by: North American Roofing
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
Carl Verble believed in the power of good people, ideas and values working together as one. In 1979, Carl founded North American Roofing with those principles as the company’s foundation. Since its inception, the third-generation family-owned and -operated commercial and industrial roofing contractor has installed and serviced more than 950 million square feet of roofing on more than 19,500 facilities nationwide.
“My grandfather started the business in the late 1970s and it’s always been a family business; no matter how much things have changed,” shares Brian Verble, president and third-generation family owner of North American. “I grew up learning the trade early on from my father, uncles and aunts.”
A Rapid Progression
Brian explains how North American emerged out of a key partnership. “My grandfather had a relationship with a top executive at Firestone Tire and Rubber and they joined to create a roofing program, training several hundred contractors,” he recalls. “From there, we basically went national right away serving Home Depot, Service Merchandise Kmart and other large-scale retailers.”
North American quickly took off because the North Carolina-based contractor offered something the competitors did not. “Unlike the traditional asphalt, built-up roofing other companies used, we began installing light weight, economical roofs,” explains Brian. “We were one of the firsts to install EPDM rubber roofing. The new-kid-one-the-block product took off and, as a result, our growth was rapid through the mid 1980s. We even hit the INC 500 fastest growing companies list.”
Over the next several decades, North American continued to expand its commercial and industrial business, supporting one of the country’s largest retailers. “We’ve been working with Home Depot since the beginning,” reveals Brian. “In the early 1980s North American offered maintenance and repair as the retailer grew from 28 offices into 2,000 stores nationwide.”
North American also helped Home Depot develop a residential roofing program under the retailer’s “At Home services” label. “In 1998, we established Home Depot Installed Roofing and North American did all of Home Depot’s residential roofs until 2003, when the retailer transitioned the service to in-house, “shares Brian.
Brian says North American’s relationship with Home Depot helped the contract emerge as a stronger, more capable company. “There’s always been a strong relationship with Home Depot, but it was truly beneficial for us in the sense that we had to focus on our operating procedures and business practices in order to perform that type of work,” he notes. “We learned how to monitor our service and ensure that every customer, no matter where the job, is getting excellent service and consistent quality. We learned how to communicate on a national level.”
Industry Leading Service
Although North American remains headquartered in Asheville, N.C., the company now operates coast-to-coast. “We’re the third largest national roofing contractor,” adds Brian. “We also have an office in Indianapolis and our work spans across the U.S., including Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.”
Today, the company employs about 450 individuals. “We have a great team of seasoned employees,” says Brian. “Some have been with us since my grandfather hired them and they’ve truly helped us earn our reputation for good value and standing behind our projects.”
With a skilled team, willing to go nationwide, North American offers a massive scope of products and services, from new roof construction to waste recycling and energy audits, to roof replacements and preventative maintenance. The company installs TPO, EDPM, PVC, roof coatings, vegetative roofs, metal roofing, solar installations, insulation and modified and built-up systems, with the support of trusted relationships with some of the industry’s best manufacturers such as, Carlisle Syntec and Firestone Building Products.
“We’re in the top 1 percent as far as ratings go with national manufacturers,” shares Brian. “We have a trusted, premier status and their support contributes to our growth.”
North American’s range of capabilities has earned the company major contracts with national retailers by the likes of Wal-Mart, Toys-R-US, IKEA and Michelin. “We’ve done every new store installation for Home Depot since 2002, and we do about 100 Wal-Mart roof replacements per-year,” reveals Brian.
Shaping Up for the Future
But even a company of North American’s size-and-scope isn’t immune to economic turmoil. “In 2008, when the economy tanked I made a decision to change our direction and implement some measures that provide long-term, sustainable growth,” explains Brian. “We now have a CRM platform and database that allows us to track our communication from the point when we obtain a lead to the installation.”
With new systems in place and a recovering economy, Brian says North American is getting back into new construction. “I think we’re going to continue in this growth cycle,” he assures. “We’ve put the right infrastructure in place and we’ve made some great hires so we have a platform to grow incrementally over the next decade.”
Brain has taken a hands-on approach to shaping North America. “I’ve traveled around the country, meeting our customers, learning about products and getting a firsthand look at jobs,” he says. “Over the years, I’ve done a little bit of everything for this company, from repair and maintenance to national sales. I’ve realized it’s something I truly enjoy and wanted to make the most of it for my family.”
As a company that’s seen monumental growth and rapid progress over the last 34 years, North American Roofing continues to hone its service and industry-leading capabilities to be the best-of-the-best, for future growth and prosperity for the next generation of family ownership.
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