We are burried in installations right now and lots of bids going out but not for solar film.
Digital print decorative film is really booming. And were printing a lot of it.
We've been working toward a goal for the past 6 years and we should do it this year. I wish I could say the same for solar and safety films but I don't see those markets returning like they were for a long time if ever. Here's why.
1. Market saturation. Most residential customers that could buy film have already done so during the construction boom. There will always be some homes but not enough to sustain the number of tinters.
2. Seal failure. The one's that have not failed are inching closer to seal failure with every passing day. A lot of cheap vinyl windows were used in homes and 7 years is normal life expectancy which means they are not going to spend money tinting a 10 year old home full of bad windows.
3. New technologies. When a tornado destroyed most of the glass at the St. Louis Airport they used custom manufactured blast glass. Not film.
4. Architectural design. Most architects we meet with are using new glass technologies in construction and unless the building owner is retro fitting an older building film is not considered.
5. What's left in solar/safety film industry? Older window film applications failing on commercial buildings is about it. You just love that CDF adhesive removel!
6. Consolidation of film manufacturers. Notice who is buying the solar film companies at bargin basement prices? Why would they want them and what will they do with them? Get the picture?
I conclusion Ithink it's safe to say there will be auto tinting to do for awhile but you never know what laws the politicians are dreaming of and the entry barrier to auto tint is cheap so competition is everywhere.
Where do we go now? Architectural decorative film, digital graphics, vehicle wraps, vinyl signs and logos mixed in with what window film we can do. I have really enjoyed this industry for the past 30 years but technology has caught up with it and if you don't keep looking for new cheese you'll starve cause it keeps moving.
Had we not focused on digitally printed film and graphics we would be gone. So what do my industry peers think?