Guardian was established in 1932 in Detroit, Michigan. We were the first company to enter the U.S. primary glass industry in nearly 50 years when we opened our first float glass plant in Carleton, Michigan in 1970. From there, we expanded our processes and philosophies to strategic locations throughout the U.S., learning and perfecting at each new location.
With such valuable U.S. experience, Guardian saw new opportunities to expand. We entered the European market in 1981 with a float glass plant in Bascharage, Luxembourg, the beginning of a strategic global expansion. Our European presence grew to include operations in eight countries, enhancing our ability to serve the building products, commercial and residential glass and automotive industries.
As Asian economies continued to experience unprecedented growth in the 1990s, Guardian built a float facility in Nong Khae, Thailand. Guardian's operations now include a second plant in Thailand (Rayong) along with manufacturing, sales and distribution capabilities that reach throughout Asia.
Also in the 1990s, Guardian launched the first advanced glass plant in the Gulf region in Al Jubail, Saudi Arabia. Before that, the region's entire glass supply had been imported from Europe, Asia and the U.S. Since bringing advanced float glass to the Middle East, Guardian has expanded its presence with glass-making and distribution capabilities throughout the region and into neighboring Africa.
Guardian's Latin American presence has grown steadily since the 1990s. We serve this developing and fast-growing region with two Brazilian glass manufacturing facilities, one in Venezuela, distribution operations in Colombia and Argentina and a sales network that spans South America. Guardian is positioned to provide world-class, high-performance glass products to its South American customers quickly and efficiently.
Guardian also maintains manufacturing outposts in growth hotspots such as India and Russia. We know how to say "how may we help you" in dozens of different languages. Most importantly, we are where our customers are, around the corner or around the world.