Joe Santelli, President, Santelli Tempered Glass.
For homeowners throughout the country, for employees of Santelli’s Tempered Glass and for residents of Monessen, Joe Santelli certainly is a “glass” act. With almost three decades of sales experience in the safety glass industry, the former civil engineer decided in 2006 he would become his own best customer. Joe was intrigued by tempered glass – which doesn’t break into jagged shards when hit with a baseball, but instead disintegrates into harmless pebble-sized pieces, eliminating injuries. Once he learned about the process, he sold himself a glass furnace and started manufacturing tempered glass for residential windows.
Joe began operations in a former Pennsylvania steel mill with 23 employees. The first year, he netted more than $550,000. Offering an innovative product, coupled with a one-day turnaround and personalized customer service, Joe doubled his staff within a year. In 2010, after achieving $5 million in sales, he utilized the SBA’s 504 Loan program to purchase a facility in Florida, while leasing a third site in Indiana.
A green company, Joe recycles leftover glass and uses 100 percent recycled products for his delivery pallets. Also, his customers receive energy tax credits for purchases. Santelli Tempered Glass is now a supplier to 80 residential window companies.