By Dani Mackey
Few wholesale fabricators are as passionate about what they do as Classic Rock Fabrication, which serves specialty kitchen and bath professionals in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland and northern Delaware. President and CEO Alex Bazdar built his business with a single go-to-market strategy: providing dealers and designers everything they need to exceed their clients’ expectations, from craftsmanship to service. Through trusted long-term relationships, new technologies and a well-honed sales process, Classic Rock has seen 20% growth year over year — including during the COVID-19 pandemic — installing up to 60 kitchens per day.
Location, Location, Location, Location
To better serve the industry, Classic Rock embarked upon one of their biggest endeavors by installing their own 11,000 sq. ft. stand-alone design center in Mechanicsburg, Pa., in 2018 — the first of its kind. Seeing how positively the center was welcomed by designers, Classic Rock opened a second 20,000 sq. ft. center in Sewell, N.J. in 2021. It’s at these “not open to the public” facilities where Classic Rock welcomes dealers into a playground of stone and color — where hundreds of choices of granite, marble, quartz and porcelain grace the showroom. Cascading walls of multi-dimensional carved and textured Corian Solid Surface designed by M.R. Walls — which Classic Rock sees as the next big trend — are among some of the focal points of the Mechanicsburg design center, along with vividly inspiring kitchen and bath vignettes, top-end commercial kitchens, and wine-tasting spaces that feature the hand-selected products that meet Classic Rock’s high bar of quality, service, and on-trend styles.
Classic Rock’s two fabrication facilities located in Harrisburg, Pa. and Pittsburgh, Pa., house a total of 14 automated CNC machines, routers and sawjacks. Investments in technology and automation are vital to their ability to deliver accurately and on time and keep up with changes in demand and material specifications.
Everyone at Classic Rock – including stone buyers, designers, craftsmen, and installers — goes to great lengths to ensure clients have a seamless experience from design, to purchase, to delivery. Their hyper-market focus has allowed them the ability to train their entire staff extensively, one business at a time. They are selective in choosing partners that are at the apex of their areas of expertise, as showcased by only carrying a core group of five stone brands they know they can depend on for quality and service. One of their trusted surface partners, Corian Design, has been able to forge a long-term relationship, as they have always stood behind their products and helped Classic Rock — from the smallest of customer concerns to helping them establish industry best practices.
Classic Rock also has hired outside experts to refine production processes to identify opportunities to improve accuracy and reduce delivery times — allowing them to go from template to installation within a week. They prefer to be “invisible” to homeowners, so that there is no mistaking it was the dealer who delivered the customers’ countertop, backsplash, fireplace or vanity. According to Bazdar, everything is done to protect the interests of their dealers and clients.
Classic Rock happily relies on the expertise of its partners for product and color trends. Corian Quartz and Corian Endura high-performance porcelain are prominently featured at their design centers. Quartz has surpassed granite in recent years in terms of customer preference — both for its consistency of color and pattern and its ability to meet homeowners’ evolving design preferences, and porcelain is growing in popularity due to its durability. Additionally, Corian Design color experts ask executives at Classic Rock for their input on color development, providing an opportunity to weigh in on their future product selections. While whites, grays, and clean lines are still predominant, Bazdar is glad to see that darker colors and unique finishes are making a resurgence. They are seeing many of today’s homeowners making aesthetic and design choices that will make them happy, versus what may be safest for resale. Another unique industry surprise is the demand they are starting to see for porcelain in bathrooms, especially shower surrounds.
The Back of the House
On the outside, Classic Rock is wall-to-wall stone beauty. Internally, each employee is focused on the customer by making tough decisions and anticipating problems that may occur in the uncertain world — handling supply chain issues, pricing concerns, trend information, and logistics. To achieve this level of insight and information, Classic Rock relies on a network of partners who understand and align with their philosophies and respond with the same level of care as they do. Distributor C.H. Briggs of Reading, Pa., is one of their most valuable partners for all the reasons stated above. According to Bazdar, it’s not a job, it’s a passion.
To learn more about Classic Rock Fabrication, visit www.classicrockfab.com.
To learn more about the products featured in this story, visit www.corian.com.