To say ECHOtape manufactures and sells high-quality adhesive tape is very true. That’s the essence of what we do – but it hardly tells the whole story.
That story is about people. The handshake on the warehouse floor. Technical support with a smile. Down and dirty field testing with industry pros. Phone calls and follow-ups. Custom tape products. Hand deliveries. Baby showers and bat mitzvahs. Golf outings and college credits.
At ECHOtape, our goal is to provide tape solutions to our customers with personalized service and attention. But our story was, is, and always will be about family.
In The Beginning…
Every day, we go to work hoping to do three things: provide adhesive tape solutions for our customers; foster an engaging workplace for our team; and make our customers feel that we are giving them a uniquely personal experience. That was true when Stanley and Marilyn Edelstein first started ECHOtape in 1973, and it’s just as true today.
Back then, the company was just Stanley and Marilyn, a blue Volkswagen, and a single roll of packing tape.
Having studied engineering, pressure-sensitive tape captured Stanley’s imagination. The U.S. Army Veteran spent several years working for a local tape and chemical distributor in the Midwest before moving his family—three children strong—to Marilyn’s hometown of Montreal, Canada and launching Edelstein Diversified [ED].
The husband and wife team, now in business for themselves, knew innovation was paramount. So, they scraped together what cash they could and sent Stanley to his first industry tradeshow. He came back with the idea for packing tape, a basic commodity in the 21st Century but a novel idea in 1970s America.
Building A Reputation, One Decade At A Time
Like most start-ups, the early years were lean. Stanley attended every trade show he could reach by car or bus, working tirelessly until he could take the evening bus home. He thrived on meeting people and getting to know customers…one at a time. Trouble-shooting their challenges was his forte, whether they wanted his tape or not. And over the years, these personal relationships that Stanley and Marilyn built, one handshake at a time, became the company’s bedrock.
By the 1980s, ED had moved from the trunk of the VW into a small building in Montreal and hired its first employees. The tape line had expanded to include many more kinds of specialty tapes, but personal relationships continued to fuel the company’s success. ECHOtape had respect for each and every customer and the same held true for employees, who became family as well.
The ‘90s saw more of the same, but it was a growth decade for the company with warehouse expansion, staff growth, and a rebranding. Edelstein Diversified became ECHOtape, reflecting the impact, the reverberation, that Stanley and Marilyn instilled in every facet of the business. ECHOtape was to be a tangible reminder to the team and to the clients that even though the market was changing, the company remained focused on one thing only — giving customers adhesive tape solutions.
Outside of the Edelsteins, which has grown to include daughters Cherie and Risa, three groups of families work in the business and countless other friends who became colleagues. That’s not a happy accident, but rather the result of a carefully cultivated company culture.
ECHOtape believes employees should be treated with dignity and respect, encouraged to express ideas, voice concerns and be given the opportunity and training to grow with the company as far as their hard work will take them. The company’s philosophy is that if it can create the proper environment, attract the best people and instill the desire to contribute, it will prosper in good times and bad.
Indeed, when Stanley and Marilyn opened their first warehouse, they vowed that if the business ever became a big success, they would not be the kind of owners that just sit behind a desk; they would be actively involved in the day-to-day operations, in touch with employees and customers.
As the company grew, they stayed committed to this connection with others. Stanley made it a point to routinely visit customers and support facilities and Marilyn oversaw operations. Both founders set the example of connecting, listening, learning—being there when customers and employees called. Unfortunately, Stanley passed away in 2005.
Though the company lost one of its namesakes, it never faltered. To this day, in addition to its reputation for technical tape expertise, its outstanding customer care is what continues to set ECHOtape apart is its commitment to family.
Despite monumental changes to the markets we serve, our vision of success remains unchanged. By partnering with our customers and working together to solve their challenges, we have managed to stay relevant and expanded our product line as well.
“Truth be told, there were many times where we considered expanding our product line beyond adhesive tape,” says Risa Edelstein, VP of Marketing. “But each time, we chose to stay lean and focused on our core competencies of both technical expertise and knowledge accompanied with exceptional customer care. Adhesive tape is incredibly versatile, and adhesive technology is rapidly evolving. Not only are we able to pivot and expand our product line to meet the changing needs of our markets, but we still see so much opportunity.”
Indeed, to the uneducated, tape may seem one dimensional, even boring. However, the technology is adapting as fast as the markets we serve. Tapes are replacing fasteners in building and construction, and adhesive tape is being adapted for greater use in paper and packaging, especially as that industry strives to eliminate plastics. With four decades of experience solving tape challenges, ECHOtape is uniquely positioned to capitalize on the opportunities that lie ahead.
Marilyn and Stanley Edelstein may not have envisioned a future where tape replaced nails and screws, but they did know one thing: People count.
By focusing on the people—the employees, the suppliers, and the customers—and delivering a personalized experience to everyone, ECHOtape became more than just successful, it became timeless.