Owners of T&T Tinting Specialists Turning Company Over to Employees

Hawaii’s T&T Tinting Specialists, Inc. has completed a transaction to become 100% employee-owned through its newly-created Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP). The company was founded in Honolulu in 1982 and provides the installation of window films, paint protection films (PPF) for vehicles, solar, security and graffiti protection films, and custom glass graphics for residential and commercial buildings in the state.

T&T Tinting’s team is ready for the next chapter.

Heading into its 40th year, T&T Tinting’s CEO Tommy Silva has transitioned 100% of the company’s total ownership to all company employees through a qualified retirement plan known as an ESOP. All eligible employees will be granted shares of company stock each year at no cost, allowing them to earn ownership over time and accumulate additional tax-deferred retirement wealth on top of their current 401k program.

“Each employee of T&T Tinting is a highly valued and trusted team member,” Silva says. “We want our employees to feel that they ‘own and operate’ their own business which fosters tremendous pride and aloha resulting from owning actual stakes in the company. We also want our employees to benefit far beyond their wages and 401k plan as they continue to help build and grow T&T Tinting. Together we strive to be more innovative, creative and responsive to our customers’ needs.”

Silva implemented this plan because he felt it was the most sustainable path forward for the employees of T&T while protecting the legacy he has built with them. The company is on WINDOW FILM magazine’s 2021 Top Dealer list and is expected to hit nearly $5 million in sales by year’s end.

“Legacy was a critical factor in selecting this ESOP transaction, but equally as important was ensuring that anything we did as owners would directly motivate and help the employees continue to succeed,” Silva adds.

T&T Tinting installs window films supplied by Eastman Performance Films. Darrell Reed, commercial director of Eastman Performance Films, applauded the move.

“On behalf of Eastman, we would like to congratulate Tommy, Teri and their team on 40 years of business excellence,” Reed says. “The success of the T&T is based on their relentless focus on providing an outstanding customer experience, disciplined business practices while still being able to cultivate a family culture with their employees. The decision by Tommy and Teri to move forward with an ESOP for their employees embodies the family culture they have created. We are very proud to be T&T’s supplier for the last 40 years and excited to continue working with the T&T team going forward as they continue the amazing legacy they all helped build.”

Investment banking firm Ambrose Advisors advised Silva with the transition.

“Tommy Silva’s goal was to secure a sustainable future for T&T Tinting Specialists in a manner that would be highly beneficial to its employees, customers, supplier partners, vendors, and the local community,” says Michael Harden of Ambrose Advisors.

Eastman Appears in Season 5 of the Original Deluxe Series “Small Business Revolution”

Small Business Revolution (SBR) aims to revitalize small towns with one small business at a time. According to SBR’s YouTube channel, each season America chooses the town, and it chooses the small businesses to help. Deluxe and a few celebrity experts give the chosen small businesses a makeover of a lifetime. From thousands of nominations and a weeklong public vote, Fredonia, N.Y., was chosen as the featured town of the series’ fifth season.

Mike Plaza’s Nyce & Clean Auto Detailing is one of the Fredonia businesses selected in the fifth season. Plaza sought help from Deluxe to strengthen his customer base after he moved his business from his garage into a professional detailing shop.

Deluxe reached out to Eastman’s Performance Films (Eastman) team about making Plaza a LLumar® dealer based on the recommendations from two of the show’s experts, Hiep Dang and Mylan Sleets, co-owners of Pristine Detail in Minnesota’s Twin Cities.

“We really approached it the same way we approach any new customer,” said Mike Ferrara, a Performance Films dealer development representative. “We tell them the LLumar® story, show them what we’re all about, what we offer and how we can partner with them to grow their business. We didn’t treat this any different than we would have any other customer.”

“Dustin Hall, a technical services trainer, was able to get Mike’s shop set up with marketing materials, tools,” said Ferrara. “He spent a couple of days working with Mike, showing him how to install the window tint, so he was just a huge help.”

Ferrara and the rest of the team have remained in touch with Plaza since filming for the show finished.

“That’s what sets us apart from the rest of the industry,” said Ferrara. “Of course we have a quality product that we offer, but I think it’s our support. I don’t think there’s another film company out there that can do what we do and has all the things that we offer.”

Eastman Celebrates Centennial by Ringing NYSE Bell

Eastman Chemical Company (Eastman) rang the Opening Bell at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) to commemorate its centennial anniversary on Tuesday. According to the company, Mark Costa, Eastman CEO and board chair virtually rang the bell due to COVID-19.

“It’s an honor to ring the NYSE Opening Bell to commemorate our 100th anniversary,” Costa said. “In this highly competitive industry, we owe our sustained success to the dedication of our talented employees, our loyal customers and suppliers, and supportive global communities. We are committed to entering our next centennial with the same values, innovative spirit and resilience that have propelled us for a century.”

Eastman has been a member of the NYSE since it became a publicly traded company in 1994.

Eastman Foundation Commits $1 Million Toward Global Response to COVID-19

The Eastman Foundation (Eastman) recently announced it has committed $1 million toward supporting global response organizations in the wake of COVID-19.

“Given the unprecedented impact of COVID-19 on all of us, it is important that we provide support in the communities where our employees live and work,” said Willie McLain, Eastman Foundation president.

According to Eastman, it will provide funding to organizations for food, shelter, medical personal protective equipment for frontline workers and community support. In Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, the company has donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Tennessee and the United Way of Greater Kingsport.

“We’re seeing families who never thought they would ever need to ask for food. Based on the trends, we could see that demand increase 30% over the summer,” said Rhonda Chafin, Second Harvest executive director. “With the help of community partners like the Eastman Foundation, we can continue to keep up with that demand to provide food to our most vulnerable neighbors.”

The United Way of Greater Kingsport is teaming with six other United Ways in Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia to provide a collective response to the pandemic. The United Way chapters recently announced they will allocate a portion of their COVID-19 Relief Fund to the Upper East Tennessee Human Development Agency’s (UETHDA) Community Services program that helps households offset housing, rental, utility payments, and other basic needs during challenging times.

“The impact of COVID-19 is pervasive in our communities,” said Danelle Glasscock, executive director at the United Way of Greater Kingsport. “By teaming together and with the support of organizations like the Eastman Foundation, we can focus our response on the most critical needs of our citizens.”

“The work of these partners is especially critical right now. We are very proud to contribute to these efforts,” McLain said.

Eastman Outlines COVID-19 Global Response Efforts

Eastman team members are helping support front line health care workers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic by providing materials to help make critical items needed for medical, health and hygiene products that are in short supply.

Eastman has made the following contributions:

  • 10,000 face shields for Massachusetts hospitals, thanks to a collaboration with SMC Ltd.;
  • Donated copolyester resins to PRP Creation as part of an effort by cosmetics companies to produce 475,000 bottles of hand sanitizer for health organizations in France;
  • Distributed window film to Harlow College to produce 300 additional face shields for hospital workers in the United Kingdom;
  • Collaborated with the Tennessee Higher Education Commission and universities to help produce 10,000 face shields;
  • Donated copolyesters to companies in Brazil to manufacture 20,000 face shields for hospitals; and
  • Donated critical personal protective equipment (PPEP) including 180 N95 masks and 4,400 nitrile gloves to Massachusetts first responders.

The company has also converted a pilot plant at its largest U.S. manufacturing site to produce hand sanitizer for area schools and emergency responders.

“Quick, creative collaborations within our communities are making an impact,” said Mark Costa, board chair and CEO. “I am so proud of our hardworking Eastman employees who are guided by our shared vision that our work today will help slow down the spread of the virus tomorrow.”