Building on established base

New owner of Bob Kidd Siding gives name a tweak

Chris Zappa, new owner of Bob Kidd Exteriors, stands in front of one of his displays at the business on Plymouth Drive, Maryville.

Chris Zappa, new owner of Bob Kidd Exteriors, stands in front of one of his displays at the business on Plymouth Drive, Maryville.

An established name in vinyl siding and guttering in Blount County has a new face.

Chris Zappa bought Bob Kidd Siding and Guttering in June, changed the name and spent much of the summer revamping the marketing approach for the company, including the company website.

The name change isn’t in the “who” of the Maryville company, but just a tweak at the “what.”

“When we bought the company, we bought the name,” Zappa said. “We changed the name from Bob Kidd Siding and Guttering to Bob Kidd Exteriors. We wanted to keep the Bob Kidd name because of the quality associated with the company.”

Zappa said the company is now offering a new service that allows customers to see what new siding will look like before they ever put it on their house. “We go out and take a picture of a customer’s house, download that to a laptop computer, the customer picks the siding, and the software shows what it will look like,” he said. “If they’re struggling between different colors or styles, they can see it on their house on the computer before they purchase it.”

The company also is now offering shingle roofing as well as water diversion systems that push water away from a house and prevent flooding in basements.

Zappa said his background is in construction with his family’s business, Joseph Construction. “I worked with my dad 20-plus years,” he said.

The new company owner said when he worked with Joseph Construction, he often heard customers complain about water draining into basements. “Water wasn’t draining properly because it was draining around the foundation. The solution was diverting it,” he said, explaining that a PVC piping system is installed to drain water from downspouts out and away from a house foundation.

Zappa said Bob Kidd Exteriors also works with customers who want to do their projects themselves. “We have a do-it-yourself function on our website where a customers can do their own project. We explain how they can do it themselves, and we supply all the materials they need to their own job,” he said.

Zappa said the changes are something he hopes appeal to customers. “We want to take this business to the next level. We just got the website up, which is brand new for the company. And we’re now on Facebook and Twitter. We want to grow the business.”

When Zappa learned Bob Kidd was ready to retire, he approached him about buying the company. “It’s an established company, it has good name-recognition and when people think of getting siding, they think of Bob Kidd. That’s the perception,” Zappa said.

Zappa said that works well with the experience he already has working with his father, Joe Zappa, at Joseph Construction.

“Coming from Joseph, reputation is everything in business, and most business is repeated business,” he said. “It comes down to quality materials and quality workmanship. I believe in a good reputation, and I believe Bob Kidd has a good reputation.”

Zappa said he first started talking with Kidd in May, and they closed the deal in June. The new company owner said the last few weeks were spent working on the company website and a marketing plan. “My job is to market the business and expand our client base.”

He likes the future of the product he is selling, saying vinyl siding is a good investment. “It’s affordable, low maintenance and durable,” he said.

Zappa said the federal tax rebate for purchasing siding for a home expires at the end of the year, but even without the rebate, new siding on a house can save money, especially if the home has inadequate insulation. “Before we put siding on a home, we can insulate it and that helps with heating and air bills,” he said. “Some siding even comes with insulation on it.”

Vinyl is also an attractive alternative to brick. “Vinyl siding is a great product. People are using it more when they build because it costs less than brick and its durability is outstanding,” he said. “Even in commercial projects, vinyl is used.”

For more information on Bob Kidd Exteriors, located at 122 Plymouth Drive, Maryville, call 865-984-5738. On the web, visit www.bobkiddexteriors.com.

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