Reliance Worldwide keeps water moving with ease.
For 70 years, Reliance Worldwide Corporation has been creating novel and reliable solutions for the plumbing industry. Established in 1949 in a small Brisbane, Australia, tool shop, this game-changing force in flow technology helps customers around the world to “deliver, control, optimize, and solve” their water flow issues.
Today, RWC is traded on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX: RWC), employs thousands of people worldwide, serves markets in over 60 countries with 15 manufacturing plants and five research and development centers, and operates 44 locations — six of which are in the United States.
Solutions to shape the world are achieved by taking a “from meter to fixture” approach to technology development. RWC specializes in creating high-quality products for commercial, industrial, and residential use; their products are stalwarts throughout wholesale, retail, and OEM distribution channels.
Their portfolio includes SharkBite® plumbing solutions; HOLDRITE engineered plumbing and mechanical solutions; Cash Acme control valves; John Guest fittings and fluid dispensing products; and Streamlabs smart water control technologies.
The company’s push-to-connect (PTC) technology resulted in creating an entirely new market. PTC technology connects pipes without the need for glues, welding, special tools, or drying time, increasing efficiency and reducing installation time, and has become an industry standard since its introduction in 2004. SharkBite universal PTC solutions are manufactured in brass, and can be used with copper, PEX CPVC, PE-RT, and HDPE pipe.
In addition to being the largest brass PTC manufacturer in the world, RWC’s SharkBite solutions lead their brand categories. They’ve also taken a sizeable bite out of the USA’s plumbing fittings market, with sales eclipsing 10 percent of the category.
“We like to disrupt the industry. We don't want to take the same old, same old and do it the way everyone else does. Hence, we came out with push to connect. It's a revolutionary, groundbreaking concept that's really been at the forefront of a lot of our growth over the past eight years. As the world has evolved, and as we are in more of a digital age, we're looking at product lines that will capitalize on that technology,” reported Adam Thompson, purchasing manager for RWC in the Americas. We shape a better world for our customers, employees, wider communities, and shareholders through a relentless focus on making lives easier.
That groundbreaking approach has a built-in benefit to plumbing firms faced with a painfully tight labor market. As Chris Carrier, Director of Marketing for RWC Americas pointed out, “As companies are having a hard time finding skilled labor, more efficient methods allow them to do more jobs because they can work faster than before. It's helping the trade work more efficiently.”
When it comes to the residential and commercial new construction and rehabbing markets, RWC created a first-of-its-kind PTC rough-in plumbing solution that combines SharkBite PTC technology with the company’s PEX (crosslinked polyethylene) pipe and control valves to create a complete solution. EvoPEX® is a boon to plumbers working on new builds or gut jobs, making the entire process of installing a complete bath or kitchen more efficient and economical than ever before.
As Carrier explained, “The price point is very attractive for the professionals out there who are putting in plumbing systems in new construction, and it really reduces the labor costs associated with that. A plumber's crew can come in and plumb the home in a fraction of the time that it would previously take to sweat the fittings in or to glue the fittings in. It's really about the cost savings opportunity and the ease of use in a new construction environment.”
Most of plumbing’s magic happens behind the wall, and that’s where RWC’s Holdrite® line of engineered pipe support products comes in. Acquired by RWC in 2017, Holdrite products are complementary to existing RWC products, and include fire stop technology for multistory buildings, water heater accessories, and acoustical pipe isolation solutions for new residential and commercial new construction.
In the era of smart metering technology and other data-driven monitoring tools, RWC is leading the way in smart home water management with their Streamlabs® system.
“This IoT product works with smart devices and provides real-time data information about potential leaks. It lets our customers see exactly what’s happening with water in their home. The smart home monitor tunes into the pulse of the water supply and delivers accurate data in real time to help detect leaks, learn about water habits, and find ways to use water more effectively. The newest addition to this product line will actually be able to shut the water supply off if a leak is detected,” Thompson reported.
“If your pipes spring a leak when you’re away from home, Streamlabs’ technology shuts the water off and notifies you that there's a problem. That way, you minimize property damage,” Thompson noted. “Insurance companies are very interested in this technology because it can help reduce their costs from property damage claims. We live in a society where water is becoming a critical resource. We can minimize the waste of water, which has benefit and value as well.”
Carrier added, “The company puts so much into innovating and bringing new products to market, that every year we're adding a new innovation or continuing to build out our entire offering. In most years we launched well over a hundred products.”
At the half-year mark, RWC reported a 50 percent jump in net sales revenue, and the company is on a solid growth path. As Carrier put it, “The company looks completely different than it did four years ago. It's been so much fun. That's the great thing about working here with double-digit growth every year: By doing that work, using a lot of technologies, everything always leads back to innovation. That’s the focus we take with our products, and we also look at ways to be innovative in how we deliver our messaging and how we connect with our customers. It starts with what we bring to the market, but it flows through everything else.”
It’s not enough for RWC to lead the world in cutting edge product creation; their leadership team’s caring, collaborative approach from the shop floor to the C-Suite drives fresh thinking and room to evolve. “When our senior leadership team in Atlanta come in — and they’re in a lot — they talk to everyone. Our group CEO ran our Cullman, Ala., manufacturing facility when we became part of RWC. He worked hand-in-hand with a lot of people still working here today, and it’s remained a family environment. As we’ve grown, we try not to forget where we came from and what makes us successful,” Thompson asserted. That’s the kind of enduring connection that RWC exists to make.
Reliance Worldwide Corporation (RWC) is a global provider of water control systems and plumbing solutions for domestic, commercial and industrial applications. Founded in 1949, the RWC family of brands has continually evolved to exceed global industry standards with diversified manufacturing and distribution operations across three continents.
RWC has dedicated 70 years to its business, brands and products, and maintains a commitment to innovation by investing in high-value automation to remain competitive in the global environment. Its many product lines are truly the total package of water control solutions and succeed on a world platform with a streamlined operations strategy and regional centers of excellence across our company portfolio.
RWC’s manufacturing and distribution capabilities are the drivers of market-leading product lines around the globe, including SharkBite®, Cash Acme®, HoldRite®, John Guest®, Streamlabs®, Reliance Water Controls®, RMC®, Auspex®, TubeFit®, Ryemetal®, Matthews Fire Alarm®, and Titon®.