FOR OVER 30 YEARS, AMS HAS BEEN SUPPLYING THE IRISH MARKET WITH HIGH QUALITY ALUMINIUM SYSTEMS
Architectural and Metal Systems, the market leader in the Irish aluminium industry, was established in January 1990 in Cork by Chris Martin, Pat O’Hara and the late Dave Rawlings.
All three founders recognised the need for a high quality, customer and service driven supplier of products to the fenestration industry. Originally offering the O&S PVC products from its warehouse in Site Cast Industrial Estate, Cork, AMS quickly realised that the building industry demanded more. The directors reacted accordingly and shifted their focus from the PVC industry to the supply of aluminium systems.
Ten years later, AMS had built up a large business for its aluminium systems, getting them painted and thermally broken locally. This however was not the most satisfactory of situations as AMS was not in control of the process and was constantly being let down by its local painting supplier. AMS always had a policy where “Service means Sales” – the company realised that any issues outside of its own control was not good for business.
In 2001, AMS decided to purchase a 78,000 sq. ft. building on the water’s edge in Wallingstown, Little Island. Once the home of the Sea-Ray speed boat factory, the space afforded the opportunity to install two state-of-the-art horizontal paint lines and a thermal break line. This allowed the company to take control of its painting and thermal break capabilities and ensure that customer commitments were always met. The positive consequence of this also allowed for the reduction of lead times, which the Irish fenestration industry reacted to in such a positive manner that the company became the leader in the supply of high quality aluminium systems, a position it has maintained since 2002.
A commitment to innovation and design from 2002 to 2006 saw AMS develop its patented thermal break window and door systems. The customer uptake was unprecedented and the volume of material being painted necessitated the purchase and installation of a vertical paint line in 2008, just to keep up with customer demands.
With the commissioning of the vertical paint line in 2008 and the advent of the TS66 and MU800HI systems, there was so much of an appetite for the AMS collection of systems that management took the visionary move to purchase its first extrusion plant, a 1,800 tonne extruder. This was commissioned in 2010 and was capable of producing 6,000 tonnes of extruded profile per annum. Despite the global crash of that year, AMS was able to react and diversify as it had all the mechanism under one roof. The company also expanded into other markets requiring the use of high-quality aluminium products. The ambition of total service and supply under one roof was further bolstered by the addition of a sheet metal department in 2015, which again proved highly successful in that customers can get all their requirements from the one supplier.
By 2018, the current extrusion capacity of 6,000 tonnes was insufficient to service the demand for the highest quality aluminium profiles so AMS once again invested in an additional 2,500 tonne extrusion press, one which it commissioned in 2019.
AMS now has an extrusion capability of 16,000 tonnes per annum, reinforcing its position as market leader in the aluminium industry. AMS has an unyielding approach to investment, innovation and service which in 30 years has brought it from a local supplier of PVC to a global supplier of aluminium.
Denise Maguire Editor of Irish Construction Industry Magazine