Celebrating its 50-year anniversary, Pace Drywall has been providing drywall, metal stud framing and taping services to the San Francisco Bay area since 1965. Founded by Robert Mauldin, Pace began as a drywall subcontractor in residential construction and expanded into the commercial sector in the 1980s.
Pace is a family-run business currently in its third generation of management. Alan Mauldin, son of founder Robert Mauldin, maintains ownership of the company and an active role in the accounting and administrative decision making process while his son Matthew is the director of estimating. The family-oriented aspect of the company is what Alan and Matthew feel the company brings to the industry and also differentiates the company in a competitive business. “I think that this industry has lost a lot of the personal touch,” he says. “The relationships we establish with customers, contractors and suppliers matter just as much if not more than landing the next job.”
The company enjoys expressing its gratitude to its employees as well as business partners by hosting events such as holiday parties. “We don’t do those things because we feel we should,” says Matthew. “We do it because we want to. We believe our crews and employees are worth more than to us than we can express and hope these small events show them the value we place in their hard work.”
An early start
Much like his father, Matthew began working for the company when he was 14 years old. On the weekends and during summer vacations he would perform odd jobs such as sweeping the warehouse and taking out the trash. Within a year he would be out in the field learning the trade. “I started out with fire taping and eventually moved into framing and hanging,” says Matthew. “By age 16 I was metal-stud framing and performing a lot of carpentry work.” After graduating from college in 2007, Matthew would return to work for the company and in 2008 he stepped into a management position.
As Matthew joined the company full time at the start of the recession, the company relied on its strong client relations to maintain a steady workflow. By staying consistent and accepting the right jobs at the right time, Pace was fortunate to thrive through the first quarter of the economic downturn, suffered a difficult financial blow, rebounded and is currently growing as a company.
By utilizing its family-oriented approach to the industry, Pace has established strong relationships with local general contractors. For years the company has worked with Cannon Constructors North Inc., based out of San Francisco. One of the first project that Pace and Cannon Constructors collaborated on was a project called Brandon Street Towers in San Francisco, California. “We have established an incredible relationship with them,” says Matthew. “To this day we still work together and do favors for each other. We even work together on the same charitable events annually.”
Another recent residential project that Pace collaborated on with Cannon Constructors in addition to Swinterton Builders was a project called Trinity Towers in San Francisco. Pace used its own method to smooth-finish concrete decks on this job. “There are a lot of aspects that go into our method of floating out concrete,” says Matthew. “It all starts with the general contractor prepping the site for us. It’s another example of the working relationships that we have with the contractors we work with.”
A successful formula
In continuing its relationships with local contractors, Pace is currently working on a project called Indigo Apartments in Redwood City, California. The company is working in collaboration with longtime strategic partner Cahill Contractors based out of San Francisco. Matthew notes that the job’s tight schedule is a challenge that his crew is capable of overcoming. “Mitigating the quantity of workers that we have on the job and making sure we keep costs at bay has been working really well to keep the job on the owner’s timeline,” he explains. “We’re using a smaller crew than we normally would use because we have found the right guys to do the work, increasing efficiency for all trades involved.” Pace’s safety priorities are also highlighted in the project as the company places an on-site safety officer on the job every day.
Pace is a growing company, with plans to double its annual revenue within three to five years. While the company plans to stick with its one office location, Pace is looking to take the approach of creating focus teams on each job site. This approach is currently underway with the Indigo project. “It’s like a satellite office but it’s an office specifically dedicated to that particular job,” Matthew explains. “The crew reports to us every day but they are on location running the job themselves.”
While the company expands it operation, Pace Drywall will maintain its solid relationships as it establishes new clients and business partners.
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