F.W. Haxel Co. Flies High
It’s not easy to find products made entirely in America. Family-owned F. W. Haxel Co. is keeping a 77-year tradition alive in Havre de Grace with custom-made flags, banners and signs produced in Harford County and shipped around the world.
|Number of Employees: 15
Year Founded: 1935
Property size: 3 acres
Number of Facilities: 3
Gross Sales: $2 million annually
Interesting Factoid: Did you know that F.W. Haxel Co. does flags and printing for Camden Yards?
Operated by successive generations of Haxels since 1935, president Philip Haxel shares ownership of the business with his sisters Lynn Warner and Lois Manning. Haxel’s grandfather, Frederick William, opened the business in a garage on Monroe Street in Baltimore.
“Our business started as an awning business, and my grandfather incorporated flags into the business,” Haxel explains. “I wanted to get into the flag and printing business.”
Haxel’s persistence and desire to grow the family business led him to make some tough business decisions. He sold the original awning business in the early ’90s. “Digital printing was going to catch up and slowly our work dropped down,” Haxel reveals. Two years later, he says the company converted to digital printing and purchased a three-acre property in Havre de Grace off Pulaski Highway.
The company’s main building is 15,000 square feet with retail store space, offices, printing, sewing and packaging. Next door, a 12,000-square-foot warehouse provides product storage and flagpoles. The third space in Rosedale is F.W. Haxel’s corporate office with sales, accounting and installation in the 7,000-square-foot space.
Haxel’s niche goes beyond flag making to printing, design, finishing and installation. He says his company’s knowledge about fabrics and printing is second to none. Haxel has a dye sublimation machine that prints on flags and anything that is 50 percent polyester or more. A flagpole business also operates from the onsite warehouse where poles of all sizes, from 15 feet to 80 feet are stored and ready for sale to businesses and schools.
“The economy has changed our business and it’s hard finding our place,” Haxel reveals. “Not only did the economy change, but we are also dealing with products made in China.”
No matter what the economy looks like, F.W. Haxel’s list of esteemed clients continues to grow and includes the City of Baltimore, Washington, D.C., Baltimore Orioles, The State of Maryland, Baltimore Ravens, DC Bid, Verizon Center, the Aquarium as well as conventions, displays, banner stands and flags at area businesses. Large format screen-printing is incorporated for the Orioles and the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.
The company assisted the Orioles in honoring legendary player Cal Ripken’s playing streak. F.W. Haxel bolted banners to the wall at the stadium and every day to commemorate Ripken’s record for the most consecutive days played … 2,131. Haxel says, “It was shown all over the country and became a big deal.”
Haxel is intricately involved with the Star Spangled Banner Celebration to be held June 13-19 at Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. The State of Maryland is helping the company sell the Star Spangled banner made in the U.S.A., with 15-tilted appliquéd stars and 15-sewn stripes faithful to the design of the flag that flew over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 and inspired the writing of the National Anthem. Haxel hopes the celebration will be a big kick to the economy. Visit starspangled200.org for more details.
F.W. Haxel employs sales staff, graphic artists, printers, sewers, installers, managers and supervisors. Haxel says that most employees have worked at the company for at least 10 years. “We are doing festivals and events, and our employees are out in the field,” he says. “It’s a great working environment, and we treat people right.”
A major provider of individualized, one-of-a-kind custom work, F.W. Haxel specializes in out-of-the-ordinary jobs and never shies from a job just because it doesn’t fit into the standard processes. The client base ranges in size from the individual decorating their home, to large corporations decorating national, or even international store-chains. F.W. Haxel Co. is dedicated to offering courteous and dependable service coupled with competitive prices. I95
F.W. Haxel Co.