Norwood’s Souvenir Plant Begins to Rebuild
As reported in June, Norwood’s Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based Souvenir writing instruments facility experienced severe flooding resulting in extensive damage to the plant and tremendous impact on the lives of our employees and the community at large. The company is pleased to announce salvage and clean-up is complete and on July 14 received the necessary building permits to begin reconstruction.
Norwood’s Souvenir facility is in one of the areas worst hit, with 10 feet of river water flooding the plant and requiring the entire facility to be completely gutted. While the plant’s infrastructure was destroyed, the company was able to salvage some of the production line machines and have temporarily moved them to the Red Wing facility to allow as much production to proceed as possible.
Prior to the flood, Souvenir’s production line consisted of several standard machines as well as a number of custom-built machines allowing Souvenir the flexibility to produce a unique, high-quality line of writing instruments. A number of new machines have been ordered from overseas to replace those that were too damaged to repair and will be delivered in 30 to 90 days. “The new equipment will enable us to improve plant capacity and efficiency—a positive development during this difficult time,” said Dave Thalacker, director of operations at Souvenir. “But we are also diligently working to repair the custom-tooled machines as we are committed to continuing production of our more unique items,” he continued.
Currently, the company is able to produce almost 60 percent of the Souvenir product line on a 15-day production lead time and is working around the clock to continue increasing capacity at Red Wing while the Souvenir Facility is rebuilt.
“We greatly appreciate and admire the dedication of our employees as we work through contingency plans and on to rebuilding,” said Paul Lage, president of Norwood Promotional Products. “They are committed to returning Souvenir to full capacity as quickly as humanly possible,” Lage concluded.