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The Alleguard Advantage

Every day, products are transported all over the globe from warehouse to shipping container to delivery van, and then carried around the country in pursuit of their final destination. More often than not, they arrive at their endpoint in the same perfect condition they left the warehouse in. This is not a result of the product’s own ability to endure these journeys unscathed, but rather of the packaging that protects it at every twist and turn along the way. Protective is a key word in Alleguard’s story and one that extends beyond its high-quality protective packaging solutions. “We’re protecting products, we’re protecting people, and we’re protecting the earth through sustainability,” says Laura Catalan, Alleguard’s Director of Marketing.

Alleguard’s name is a combination of Allegiance – that is to its employees, companies, and suppliers – and Guarding, or protecting, which is at the root of its offering. “Whether it be a refrigerator being shipped, a life-saving vaccine, or a home from a hurricane, our products can bring a sense of security that other products can’t provide.” Alleguard is the result of an ongoing rebrand which sees the amalgamation of six legacy companies, each leading manufacturers in their respective industries, under one umbrella and in the name of collective success. “All the legacy companies bring in different aspects of the business,” says Catalan, “giving Alleguard a combined 60-year company history that has allowed us to penetrate new market segments and expand our footprint.” A market leader in the engineering, delivery, and service of foam solutions, Alleguard covers three major product categories for North America: Construction, Protective Packaging, and Cold-Chain. “We can really produce any type of custom foam product to suit our customer’s needs,” Catalan says, before taking me through the three product categories that form Alleguard’s portfolio.

“For construction products we serve multiple applications offering a complete building envelope for residential and commercial,” she says. “That includes wall installation, roofing installation, radiant floor heating and insulated concrete forms.” Alleguard’s EPS construction products are cost efficient in their ability to speed up installation time and reducing the total cost of install. The end-product provides superior moisture control and long-term R-value retention, which makes it high-performing and energy-efficient in operation too.

Cold-chain EPS solutions are safe, reliable, and economical, and are the perfect foam solution to serve temperature-sensitive products for industries such as food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, and healthcare. “Any kind of product that needs to be temperature controlled,” says Kurt Arbeen, VP of Sales and Marketing for Shape Mold. “We have molded cold coolers and 6-panel liners, which are six pieces of foam that would fit into, say, a type of box as a protection. It’s a critical sector to ensure that our products can maintain temperature requirements and product integrity.”

Alleguard’s Protective Packaging Products are designed to cushion, protect, and maintain products during the shipping, handling, and storage stages of their lifecycle. From sensitive electronics to medical products, Alleguard provides OEM, Custom, and Flexible Foam Solutions that are fit for the level of protection required. “EPS, EPP, and Arcel each have tremendous value propositions across the protective packaging sectors, solving a diverse platform of issues shipping undamaged product. Protective packaging can use multiple types of materials and create solutions for automotive packaging, TVs, appliances,” Arbeen says. “There’s multiple ways that our products protect different things.”

“Through its commitment to sustainability, Alleguard is safeguarding more than just the products it protects.”

As we move through different phases of the climate emergency, we are no longer satiated by simple recycling initiatives that, while important, fail to make waves in a movement that is rapidly growing in urgency. With this, it is the companies that truly commit to the cause that will make a significant difference. Catalan explains how Alleguard is exploring sustainability “through benchmarking and driving improvements with our utility footprint, community work, and partnerships to explore EPS in a circular system. We have been working towards creating metrics and sustainability reports that we can provide corporately and to our company as a whole, with multiple plans across North America. We really engage in recycling and reusing clean scrap or clean waste into our products, so a cradle-to-cradle approach. We also sell densified material overseas to create new products, and so our entire manufacturing process is also sustainable and energy efficient.”

In this way Alleguard’s sustainable initiatives extend beyond its line of foam production and into the community it serves. The company is becoming increasingly involved with community outreach programs that support sustainability and reduce waste to landfill. “Our corporate sustainability message is continuing to grow,” says Dusty McNab, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Block and Fabrication. “We are working with the public to be able to take back their waste, depending on what type of waste it is, so that we can use it in different ways.” In further support of a full-circle approach to sustainability, Alleguard ensures that the raw materials it uses, the procurement of its products, and the components of the final products it provides are all sustainably sourced. “It’s important to partner with people who have the same goals as us in terms of corporate sustainability,” McNab says. Through its commitment to sustainability, Alleguard is safeguarding more than just the products it protects.

“We’ve really ramped up our ESG strategy,” says McNab, speaking about the framework used to assess an organization’s business practices and performance on various sustainability and ethical issues. The Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) framework aims to limit negative impact and enhance positive impact on the environment, society, and governance bodies. A decision to follow ESG principles is a commitment to behave in a responsible, ethical, and community-minded manner in the three designated areas. “We’re looking at every aspect of environmental, social and governance within the company, including employee and turnover rates, culture, community outreach, recycling programs, customer partnerships and manufacturing processes. There’s definitely a lot of growth potential in this space for us, but we are pretty proud of where we’re at right now.”

On the ongoing rebrand, of which sustainability is just one element, McNab says that the company “needed a unified name, to share our story and our vision, for both our internal teams and customers. What’s important to us is how we put all of the legacy companies under this Alleguard umbrella, and make sure we don’t lose sight of the legacy customers that we bring with us.” Though the rebrand is still ongoing and expected to take the balance of a year, Alleguard has already started to see the positive outcomes of it. “We now have 17 locations with our Headquarters in Nashville,” he says. “That footprint has allowed us to capture new business, because of lead times and logistically, just being so close in proximity for freight and things like that. There are times when we have pulled from multiple locations to fulfil customer orders, and the ability to do that is key. Our footprint is really important to be competitive in the industry and our multiple locations have definitely allowed us the room to grow.” Being able to shift assets between locations depending on where the demand is higher gives Alleguard a unique advantage – the Alleguard Advantage.

With the positive changes it continues to implement as part of the recent acquisitions, Alleguard has found itself in a position where its geographical footprint is wide and its customer base strong, all the while benefiting from a fresh and exciting rebrand along with a commitment to a sustainable future. “Going forward it’s all about taking advantage of our footprint to grow our product manufacturing in different regions, penetrating new markets, and continuing our sustainability message internally and to the public,” says Catalan. “The rebrand is definitely a challenge because we’re putting a brand-new name out there, but it’s a good challenge because there are so many positives that come with it. “Change, as we know, does not come without challenge, but nor does success. Alleguard plans to embrace change and the challenges that come with it, with the end-goal of becoming the ultimate foam solutions provider. With all the company has to offer and the combined experience of its six legacy companies, it’s a path well carved, well threaded, and well within reach.

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