The story of flexlume is written in the signs of america

We didn’t start with a sign. We started with an idea.

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The mesmerizing theater marquee, the stalwart and trusted bank, the refinement of the shoe store, and the glee of that special trip to the candy shop. Flexlume‘s history has been so many changes through cultural shifts, two world wars, and technological breakthroughs, which continue at breakneck speed. And yet the fundamentals endure - craftsmanship, functionality, quality, and service. These characteristics make up the very foundation of Flexlume, an innovator and American icon maker that guides, persists, and outlasts.

 

For over 100 years, Flexlume has been an innovator within the sign industry. We don’t simply produce signs, we designed, develop, and build brands. As a business owner or contractor, you have many decisions to consider. We’re here as the expert to help you along the way. Flexlume applies a start to finish approach that ensures your investment exceeds your expectations.

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How it all began 

 

In 1904, Roy are Wiley along with his brother, Wallace, and W.S. Hough joined forces to produce white opal glass molded letters to push through a sign face and illuminated from the rear. This was a process that would create flexible-illumination. The name Flexlume was born. Roy Wiley build the business on the model of quality and craftsmanship. Wiley fought against the policies of his competition which he referred to as “Business at any price”. His values of quality and craftsmanship first are still deeply help at Flexlume.

 

In 1911, after years of experimenting and perfecting their craft, the company moved to Buffalo, New York from Canada. Flexlume constructed a 125,000 square foot plant in 1924. At the time, this was the world’s largest plant dedicated solely to the manufacturing of electric signs.

 

With a solid customer base of financial institutions, automotive dealers, and movie theaters, the company group to as many as 500 employees, despite The Great Depression. Many of western New York’s classic marquee’s were built by Flexlume and can still be seen in use today. During World War II, all available steel resources were diverted to the war effort and Flexlume was forced to briefly close it’s doors. It was at that time, F.A. (Al) Rowell Purchased the company. In 1946 the company moved it to its current location, 1464 Main St., where Flexlume has been producing the worlds greatest signs since.

 


 
 
When you want the best suit of clothes, salvation from sickness or a fine residence, you go to a tailor, a physician or an architect. These professional people know the traditions, the materials, the technique - every element and resource of their professions, and they are, therefore in position to give you the very best individual service.

Our salesmen should be in the same position. They are in personal touch with the needs of the customer, they should know the possibilities and limitations of electrical advertising from every angle. No one should be in better position to specify details of the right kind of an electric sign than they. If our salesman will only go at the game from this angle they will see how quickly the annoyances of cost, cheap competition and other bugbears will disappear.
— Roy R. Wiley 1924
 
 

WHERE WE ARE TODAY

It’s been nearly a century since Flexlume paved the way for sign companies by developing one of the first national networks for its industry. Now 114 years later, we have been able to carry out the legacy that the originators of this company built.

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Our goal

Provide all of our customers with a competent solution for their needs by leveraging over 100 years of industry experience and knowledge. We do this by using advanced software to maintain an organized production schedule, reduce project lead times and improve communication between our customers, suppliers, and partners.

We encourage team members to serve our client with care, attention, and operate with a sense of urgency to meet project deadlines.

Most important, we pride ourselves on getting it right. “Ok or good enough’ is an unacceptable standard; we make sure we do everything we can to meet our customers standards and exceed  their expectations. 

What makes us different

Our 65+ years of experience operating on a national scale supply chain by nurturing long-term relationships with our partners and suppliers.

The field experience that Flexlume requires from our lead project managers allows us the ability to assess on-site issues at a faster rate, instruct technicians on how to address those issues and then clearly articulate to our clients on how we resolved those issues. By streamlining this process, we’ve been able to reduce costs for our clients.

We have a unique ability to execute projects that most companies don’t even want to touch. From the restoration of an old theatre marquee to a corporate re-brand, our capabilities are endless.