A FAMILY COMPANY INNOVATING SINCE 1915
In 1869, an 18 year old architect/builder, Johann Carl Otto Kubatzky, immigrated to the United States from Germany. While assimilating into the American culture, he worked as a builder and developer. He became a licensed Missouri architect and received his first approved U.S. window patent in 1915. It was followed by many patented inventions which led to incorporating the Winco Ventilator Company in 1935.
Winco’s first product was an operating projected window called a ventilator. It was built in stock sizes, and then sold to builders and glazers in St. Louis and surrounding areas. The first of many niche products designed by Winco, these ventilators were designed for homes and commercial applications in the the mid 1930’s. They were installed into 4” thick glass block walls where fresh air could “ventilate” interior spaces.
Before WWII Otto’s two sons, Theodore and Woodrow, joined their father in the construction and development world while helping the fledgling ventilator company. After the war they concentrated on growing Winco’s product line and created a nation-wide sales network. When their father retired, Ted and Woody created innovating solutions for commercial applications during the post-war building boom. The first hung/projected window is one example.
Woodrow and his wife Helen became the sole owners of Winco in the mid 50’s. During Woody’s leadership Winco became a charter member and board member of AAMA, the industry’s trade association. Also begun during his tenure was a strong family of independent sales representation that catered to the specifications of architects for custom operating aluminum windows and curtain wall.
In 1983 upon the passing of both Woody & Helen Kubatzky, their three daughters became owners. One of the daughters, Kory, married Gantt Miller, III. Gantt, like the companies’ founder, is an architect/builder and developer. During Gantt ’s management plant facilities have been expanded to meet the needs of growing production into new products including sound, thermal, tornado, hurricane, blast and FEBR (forced entry and ballistic resistant) products. Gantt also continues to participate in the highest levels at AAMA.
Today the 4th generation of Otto’s family has company participation and ownership in Winco. Together, with a very talented dedicated and loyal staff, the Winco family continues to build a strong team keeping a focus on product innovation, excellence and customer satisfaction.
WINCO: A COMPANY TIMELINE
Johann Otto Kubatzky's first window related patent approved
Winco Ventilator Company founded and patent approved for a ventilator with privacy panels
Developed first 4" deep projected ventilator for glass block walls
First patented window and wall ventilators
First patented window ventilator for casements
Patented combined window latches and connectors
Winco is charter member of AAMA
Developed complete line of projected ventilator windows and expanded distribution
Introduced crank-out casements, expanded offerings to include hung windows, and pour-and-debridge thermal break windows
Computerized order entry data to determine components and fabrication process for window manufacturing
Developed lines of sliding windows, screens, and acquired a break metal and rolling/bending operation
Winco moved into its present expanded facility at 6200 Maple Avenue in University City neighborhood
Built AAMA-certified window testing chamber
Opened state-of-the-art aluminum anodizing facility (Architectural Metals Inc.)
Developed first triple-glazed internal mini-blind window
Added second test chamber for AMMA-certified testing
Installed computerized order tracking system
Introduced AW-65 4" double hung (highest industry rated); began in-house large missile impact hurricane window testing
Upgraded pour-and-debridge process with major equipment investment
Introduced AW rated single hung and single slider that nest with double hung and double slider windows -- all with internal blinds
Completed computer network integration of fabrication, estimating, detailing and website
Final assembly plant space expanded by 1,500 sq. ft.; engineering reference manual made available on CD
Major receiving area expansion (4,500 sq. ft.) adds two docks and storage space
In-house glass optimization system added for IG and single glaze units in 2,025 sq. ft. plant addition; 3,900 sq. ft. added for trim and shipping departments
Paint ovens and sprayers installed for small jobs and touch-up
Zero sightline, store front and curtain wall vents developed with AW-70 ratings
4-1/2" window depths available in all configurations
Installed batch Kynar paint line, glass tempering oven, in-house glass lamination, Lexan test wall for AAMA certification testing; began manufacturing IG units
Introduced vented historical replacement window (Series 3250) that replicates steel projected windows
Introduced industry's first operating tornado-rated windows passing 200 mph missile test