After taking one step into Menasha Corporation’s new headquarters, it is difficult to imagine that this massive, state-of-the-art company got its start as a wooden pail factory.
164 years ago, company founder Elisha D. Smith bought the struggling factory. As the Civil War raged on, Elisha expanded the business and supplied wooden storage and shipping containers to the Union Forces. Over time, Menasha Corporation continued to grow and adapt to the times, eventually becoming one of the country’s oldest and most successful privately held family companies.
Today, Menasha Corporation is a leading corrugated and plastic packaging manufacturer and supply chain solutions provider. The company’s rich history is proudly displayed in a museum-worthy collection at their newly constructed headquarters in Neenah, WI.
The design and construction team had the challenge of creating an impressive new facility encompassed with technology that would improve work efficiency and reflect the company’s innovative history. ESG was honored when they were selected as Menasha’s A/V partner. The system planning of the 102,000 square foot building was lead by ESG’s A/V Division Manager Jeff Seager and Technology Solutions Specialist Randy Rees. Together, they worked closely with Menasha’s Leadership and IT teams to complete the installation of the video walls, conference centers, and monitoring systems.
Some of the key features include a twelve foot by seven foot interactive video wall installed in their customer collaboration space. The building also contains two other video walls located in their main lobby as well as their executive conference room, which are controlled anywhere in the room by a wireless Crestron tablet. Menasha Corporation also needed a way to connect with all of their locations in Europe, Asia, and North America. Jeff Seager and Randy Rees decided that Polycom was the best fit for Menasha’s environment and designed eight conference rooms with Polycom’s audio, video, and web collaboration tools.
“We are pleased that our long history in the Fox Valley area of Wisconsin will continue with our new facility and headquarters,” said Jim Kotek, President and CEO of Menasha Corporation. “Our new building reflects the innovative, collaborative spirit of our employees, and it’s pleasing for all of us to be able to offer a work environment that is more spacious and more conducive to how we interact with and work with our fellow employees, customers and suppliers.”
The team at Menasha wanted a real-time way to monitor how their A/V system was performing. With all of the technology that was installed, including another 40 video monitors, 20 conference room signs, projectors, and all of the behind-the-scenes infrastructure upgrades, one would assume that would be an almost impossible task. However, Jeff and Randy were able to create a very elegant solution by connecting the A/V through an IP based system and installing (i)View from Crytycal Services Management to monitor it all.
The (i)View device provides live analytics of the system. Essentially it acts as a heart monitor that alerts the ESG Help Desk immediately if there are any issues with the system such as a lightning strike or loss in network connection. The (i)View device is so detailed it can even inform the user of how much bulb life is left in the projectors and TVs.
More than 200 employees will be working in the new building, which is one of Menasha’s largest construction projects to date. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and Neenah Mayor Dean Kaufert attended the official ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, September 7. The facility is Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design Certified and replaces the previous 50-year-old headquarters.
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