Advanced Finishing USA Celebrates 50 Years in the Erie Community
50 years ago this month, family-owned Advanced Finishing USA (AFUSA) was founded by then Penn State Engineer and Erie native, Walter J. Yahn. Walter foresaw the growth of the powder coatings industry and its potential contribution to manufacturing in the region. He established Advanced Finishing U.S.A. to develop a full array of powder coating technologies and capabilities.
In 1970, AFUSA became an official business in the Erie community; originally as Plastic Coating and Molding- with just a used pizza oven and a used powder coating gun. From these humble beginnings, AFUSA started doing business for local companies, with a few friends and high school students as employees.
Walter was an early student of Deming and the other pioneers of the Total Quality Management movement. He understood immediately the importance of customer focus, quality, and service. With these principles firmly rooted, Walter built his company into a leading powder coating specialty business, creating a reputation for quick response, customer focus, and uncompromised attention to quality. Today, the family-owned 80,000 square foot facility has served customers such as General Electric, Alstom, Mitsubishi, Komatsu, Westinghouse, Kawasaki, Disney, Bombardier and the US Military to name a few.
Remaining a family-owned business (almost all of the Yahn family has worked at AFUSA over the decades, grandchildren included), today the company is a full-service custom powder coating and finishing company. They coordinate all aspects of production from cleaning, pre-treating, and finishing to assembly, packaging, and drop shipping. Their purpose-designed 80,000 sq. ft. plant located in Fairview, PA, is equipped to efficiently handle applications of almost any weight, size, configuration, or quantity.
Throughout their history, they have always put the community’s interests first. Walter’s son, Greg Yahn, the current President of Sales at Advanced Finishing USA, passionately states “You have to support your community. Places like Fairview High School, Penn State Behrend, Presque Isle State Park, the Erie Zoo, and Hamot Hospital are local jewels. These are the important places that make the community worthwhile to live in, and they deserve our support. We were supported by the Erie community from the start, and we return that support to the community today. We support them by writing checks, providing services, working with the schools and students in the community to provide a better future, and supporting the environment we live in. The company would not be what it is today without the support and dedication from our community, and it is an honor to give back to that community.”
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