Pratt Glass rallies to survive, meeting needs with diversification
Like other small businesses, Pratt Glass Enterprises LLC has had to weather the economic setbacks of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Pratt business has also had to rally to from a July 16 fire that damaged the premises.
“We knew the community needed us,” Pratt Glass Operations Manager Crystal Kohman said. “We never questioned that we wouldn’t keep providing services.”
The fire, which started in the roof of the business at 210 South Jackson about 11 p.m., damaged not only the office and display areas, but also half of the shop area.
The damage was another hurdle to overcome in a tough economic climate but diversification and filling niches has helped Pratt Glass survive, and thrive, amid difficulties.
Founded in 1959 at the same location by brothers Ellis and Allen Webb, Pratt Glass is now under the ownership of LeRoy Jones and is currently conducting business from a 24x24-foot temporary structure on the premises. With 10 employees, the business has branched out to survive.
“Once COVID hit, we decided we needed to start making personal protection plexi-glass shields for businesses,” Kohman said.
Pratt Glass crews have installed plexi-glass shields at Pratt schools and businesses and also at locations in surrounding communities as well.
Kohman said providing business board-up services has also become an active service for her company.
“We have a 24-hour emergency service that includes anything needed for keeping homes and businesses safe, from locks to replacing broken windows,” Kohman said. “We’ve really been busy with board-ups—we did four last week.”
Another niche Pratt Glass has found that helps their bottom line as well as the community is windshield installation and car detailing services.
“We actually do a lot with auto glass windshields, like pit repairs or total replacements,” said Samaria Kohman, accounting specialist. “We also do door glass, back glass and corner glass replacement as well as window regulator services when someone’s window quits rolling up and down.”
In car detailing services, a customer can purchase and interior job, exterior job, or something called “The Works” which includes interior, exterior, leather conditioning of seats, shampooing and more.
Pratt Glass also specializes in frosted and mirrored glass, as well decorative etched glass and obsolete decorative glass, and is a home-base for Superior Fire Equipment, serving both business and residential customers.