A unified approach to success is just one of the things that makes Thomas Concrete the concrete specialists
Modern society is built on concrete. We’ve come a long way from Ancient Rome, where concrete was used to build the Pantheon, but when those builders brought together sand and stone to create that substance, it was the ultimate in modernity. A lot has changed since then, but concrete remains a novel building material with incredible potential. Tapping that potential has positioned Atlanta’s Thomas Concrete as true concrete specialists.
Established in 1955 with a single plant, Thomas Concrete today operates in the USA, Germany, Sweden, Poland, and Norway as part of the Swedish enterprise Thomas Concrete Group. “We have grown tremendously in that amount of time,” said Ryan Chandley, the company’s stateside VP of sales. “That’s only possible because of our ability to maintain our networks of plants, trucks, personnel, and support from vendors and trade partners. We stay as close to the customer as possible.”
Thomas operates 73 concrete plants in Georgia, South Carolina, and North Carolina. “We refer to ourselves as Team Thomas, and that applies to every area of our business, from sales to operations, technical, and beyond,” Chandley continued. “Our offering is impactful but simple: We deliver high quality concrete services. Knowledgeable and reliable services provided by a committed team. On time. At site. At the agreed upon price.”
Thomas offers a range of products for everyone from DIYers to the largest players in the construction sector. Thomas-branded products include THOMAFIBER (fiber-reinforced concrete), THOMAGREEN® concrete with a lower CO2 footprint than other brands, and THOMABLOC non-decorative retaining wall blocks made of recycled concrete. The firm also creates custom products for specialized needs, such as slipform and colored concrete. “We really do specialize in just concrete, so we can really take that offering specifically to our customers. Our service packages are created to touch every customer segment of the market, from subcontractors to the largest tract home builders in the Southeast, to the smallest cash sale. Our mission is to be the closest to the customer and together we really want to build a sustainable society.”
Team Thomas develops unexpected and creative solutions for builders, such as utilizing a fleet of telescopic “Kreteveyor” trucks that transport mixed concrete 52+ feet without separating or changing the texture of the mix, allowing contractors to pour in tight spaces, basements, and complex wall systems where delivery space may be limited.
Cement, the binding agent required to give concrete its durability, emits a tremendous amount of carbon dioxide when it is produced at the mill. Thanks to technology developed in Canada by CarbonCure, those emissions are declining—and since 2016, Team Thomas has been leading the charge for wide adoption. The company installed CarbonCure technology into a single plant in Atlanta; now all Thomas Concrete plants feature Carbon Cure the revolutionary CO2-recycling technology.
Said Chandley, “Remember that in general concrete is sustainable, long-lasting, and 100% recyclable. It absorbs carbon dioxide, saves energy, is fireproof, moisture and mold proof. We love that, and love CarbonCure technology!” “We take waste CO2 emissions from local industry. We inject CO2 into the concrete, where it converts to a mineral and remains sequestered inside the concrete. This does not have a negative impact on the concrete, and the CO2 will never be released back into the atmosphere. What a phenomenal opportunity that is.” Another bonus? The technology actually strengthens the concrete!
The company is pressing forward toward its goal of saving at least 2 million pounds of CO2 every year across their operations in the States. “That equates to about 5,000 acres of US forest sequestering CO2 for a year. That’s pretty cool stuff. We have those kinds of numbers and we’re just at the beginning of carbon cure technology here at Thomas.”
In constructing the 360,000-sq. ft. 725 Ponce de Leon Avenue high-rise, one of the largest buildings constructed with CarbonCure concrete, Thomas used 48,000 cubic yards of the material to sequester 1.5 million pounds of CO2. “We are so proud of that at Team Thomas. Our customers ask for CarbonCure so they can help be more sustainable. How exciting is that when people start associating you with a sustainability model?”
Atlanta’s Bellwood Quarry area may be famous for its film locations, but for Thomas, the star of the show is a 5-mile tunnel that connects the Chattahoochee River to the Quarry’s new water treatment plant and 2.4-billion gallon reservoir. “We helped construct that 5-mile tunnel, and that was a very cool project to be part of,” he said.
Where have you #seenthomas?
Chandley describes the concrete business as “rolling manufacturing.” “You dump in rock, sand, cement, and water, add some chemicals, mix it together and as you’re driving to the job site you deliver a finished perishable product. It’s pretty cool how that happens. And it’s not typical.” A feature of those rolling mixers that’s drawing attention is the colorful drums as they roll. It may seem like a small thing, but it echoes the excitement and fun Chandley expresses when he talks about Team Thomas. “Team Thomas sums up our culture,” he said. “Whether operations, sales, technical, or office personnel, we really build up each other’s strengths and work as a team to deliver. Having departments work together as we do is dramatically different than anything I’ve experienced in the past.
“In the sales department we want to be the one that people want to reach out to. We don’t want to be the one they have to reach out to. It sounds like a simple thing, but we all have to depend on other people for things, so how much more success are you going to have when people truly want to reach out to you? How much more successful will your team be if they’re all thinking the same way?”
Answering the Bell
In sports parlance, Thomas is ready to answer the bell. “Like a boxer in the ring, when the bell rings you have to be ready to go,” Chandley stressed. “We are trained to make sure we are 100% ready to answer the bell when it rings. We need each other to be successful and accomplish our goals.
“We are here for the customers, and I think they see that. That’s the feedback we get from the market and we want to make sure that we continue to deliver that. We want to focus on being easy to do business with, so as Team Thomas we want to make every level of process easier, from operations to sales to technical background, and then we deliver what we promise.
“You’re either a company a customer wants to deal with, or one they have to deal with. What a difference it makes when customers want to deal with you,” he stated, “We get creative in finding ways to help our customers be successful and more profitable. A financial planner may do it, but rarely do concrete companies pursue ways to help their customers make more money. We do! We want our customers to be very successful, so we look for ways to help them do just that.
“When you are working as a team and you have the right players in the right positions you can win a lot. That’s one thing that we found here at Team Thomas. We have the right people in the right positions and we do a lot of good. That’s part of the excitement of what we’re building here. Keeping that momentum and moving forward as Team Thomas and making sure we deliver what the customer needs every day. And when you work with a team like ours it’s fun. It’s a different dynamic for the concrete business.”
After 30 years of serving customers, we are one of the leading suppliers of high quality ready-mixed concrete in the Southeast. By combining delivery of concrete with our wide range of services, we can provide complete and effective solutions for your construction projects.
We are The Concrete Specialists.
Thomas Concrete is a member of the Swedish, family-owned company Thomas Concrete Group, established 1955, operating in USA, Germany, Sweden, Poland and Norway.
2500 Cumberland Parkway
Atlanta, GA 30339