General revitalizes brand with a focus on automation

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Woodworking machinery manufacturer General International, which is under the parent company of DMT Holdings Inc., has recently revitalized its brand image and done a complete company overhaul, bringing on industry experts and launching its first batch of newly designed machines incorporating automated technology.

General’s John Otto, vice president of sales and marketing for commercial products, says a top company goal moving forward is adding the latest and greatest technology to products to attract a younger generation of woodworkers.

“From what we’re seeing, and hearing, younger generations are adapting to CNC machines on the market. We want to draw them in with some of the more manual machines with (that) technology,” says Otto.

Established in 1946 in Quebec, Canada, the General brand became known for manufacturing heavy-duty woodworking machines and eventually expanded into the U.S. market. Around 2013, the company had some financial issues and was acquired by its current owner in 2014, according to Otto, who joined the company last year to reorganize the commercial side.

“Ever since, they’ve been concentrating on revitalizing the brand with a strong concentration on the benchtop side. We had some products, but we didn’t have a complete line. So, to be different, our philosophy moving forward is to put technology in the tools,” says Otto.

General recently introduced three air cleaners and a series of automated left-tilt table saws.

Otto says about 15 additional tools are in the works. “I won’t divulge any of what those are but if people see what we’ve done in the first phase, they can probably get an idea of what else we’re going to do in 2021. It’s all in the lines of technology. Anything we can do to make the user’s job easier and repeatability more accurate,” he says.

DMT Holdings has also formed Clean Aire Solution, a new company that will produce air purification products for the educational and medical industries.

For more, visit www.generaltoolsusa.com, www.general.ca and www.cleaneairesolution.com

This article was originally published in the February 2021 issue.

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