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Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Precision Cooling Integrators & Manufacturers

Precision Cooling Integrators & Manufacturers

On Monday July 31st, I had the chance to go to the open house for Air Innovations, a company celebrating its 20th anniversary. Mike Wetzel, son of founder Larry Wetzel, talked about how they bought the company ten years ago and had only four employees. A decade later, they now have 40 employees and are shipping their product internationally.

As a precision cooling manufacturer, Air Innovations makes the cooling units for products such as wine coolers, flower displays, and military laser applications. One of the new products is called Isolation Air that is a portable air purifier for hospitals to use with burn victims.

As part of the tour, we saw what had to be the world's largest vending machine. We then saw the Floratech product line showing the company's competitive edge- their refrigeration floral units are open air instead of closed behind refrigerator doors. This is a customer-centric approach appealing to those want to easily reach out and touch/smell the flowers making these consumers more likely to buy them in supermarkets.

We also had a chance to see the "mad scientist" of Air Innovations whose job is to expose the finished units to harsh conditions to improve the reliability of the product.

Anne from HR talked about the typical Air Innovation manufacturing technician. It is a person who buys the unassembled ten speed bike for a child on Christmas Eve and easily follows the directions to assemble the bike for Christmas day. Included in the message was the safety push since you want that product to be safe for the child or end user so you take extra precautions putting it together.

Air Innovations was praised for its diversity of products- that praise was well deserved.

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