For business owners Jason Nimmo and Brad Holt, owning a full-service contract glazing company is about more than creating high-quality exterior facades and wall systems. It’s about the people behind the work. Element13 Facades LLC, located in the Denver Metro area, works each day to create an innovative and collaborative workplace where its people are empowered and trusted to dream, create, decide, and execute work in their own unique ways. Nimmo and Holt believe this is key to success.
A Foundation of Transparency and People
Element13 specializes in custom building facades from curtain walls and storefronts to windows and entrances. Nimmo and Holt launched the company in 2019 with the strong belief that the construction industry needed something new and refreshing. General contractors and architects/owners needed subcontractors committed to honesty, transparency and doing work the right way.
The pair took this belief and created a company that’s purpose, cause and passion rest on relationships, transparent communication and doing what they love. It all starts with the people. A lot of companies have “culture”, but Element13 exists because of its people.
“You cannot have a construction company without people. You can have the best machinery in the world, but people make it run,” said Nimmo. “Our primary focus is our people. That means employees, contractors, subcontractors... everyone is part of the team. If you don’t treat people like people then they just consider it a job, but we think it’s supposed to be fun.”
This is the primary backbone of how Element13 does things differently. It is infused into everything the company does and into how it operates.
Managing Commitments and Values
While Nimmo and Holt built the business on people, they also had to consider the real business considerations that come with being in the construction industry. Materials are expensive and Element13 pays for them upfront. Likewise, contractors and subcontractors require payments within 30 days, even though Element13 doesn’t get paid for 60. Cash flow can be hard and having open-ended lines of untapped credit is essential.
Element13 manages it all with professionalism and attention to detail. Nimmo and Holt do what they can during the planning process to ensure Element13 can deliver on commitments while putting people first. They work hard to find jobs that keep their core field labor positions consistent, instead of having the ups and downs of laying people off and hiring new workers when needed.
They also understand that bigger isn’t always better. They want to grow but not at the expense of the people who helped them get where they are today. They are committed to those clients that hired them when Element13 was just starting. And, as owners, they want to be involved in every aspect of the business, even as Element13 grows. This is a key difference for the company, having the owners at the forefront and reducing red tape for clients.
All of this relies on honest, transparent relationships. Including the ones held with its partners... like Sunflower Bank.
Gaining an Experienced Construction Trades Financial Partner
When Element13 launched, obtaining credit to take on jobs and employees proved difficult. Nimmo and Holt looked feverishly for a bank that would provide them with working capital. They had the connections and pipeline to build the business but still needed a partner to help with the issues of being a capital-intensive business. Then they were introduced to Marc Hendrikson and the Construction Trades Banking Group at Sunflower Bank.
The Construction Trades Group has extensive experience in the industry and knows how to spot a business with potential. They specialize in the unique banking needs of construction businesses and help them successfully manage through the revenue cycle challenges inherent to the construction industry.
And much like Element13 itself, the team at Sunflower Bank is committed to transparent, relationship-driven partnerships.
“It’s not just a bank, they care about who they are supporting,” said Holt. “Without Sunflower in our corner, it would be hard, if not impossible, to get larger pieces of business. Having Sunflower on our side gives us better buying power and gets us prequalified with some of the general contractors we work with.”
In addition to lines of credit, Hendrikson and team lend their expertise to Element13 helping its owners determine next steps, sharing what they are seeing in the market and consulting on specific issues such as PPP loans, which helped many businesses survive during the 2020 pandemic.
The Bank continues to provide support to Element13 in managing the highly unusual supply chain challenges that were initially Covid-19-related but continue to significantly impact the construction industry. Materials that could previously be ordered for delivery in days or weeks now often take months to come in and can cost from 20 to 200% more than called for in original contracts. These purchases also require contractors to have greater access to capital, as they often require large deposits or full payment many months ahead of project inception.
Element13 has grown quickly, and with the right people backing up the business, Holt and Nimmo are excited to continue their expansion plans. As their trusted banking partner, we’re proud to be supporting their banking needs every step of the way.
Looking for a construction trades banking partner to turn your dreams into reality? Reach out to one of our bankers today.