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Cabinets pace Fortune Brands

BY HBSDealer Staff

Deerfield, Illinois-based Fortune Brands reported strong performance in the fourth quarter and full year as cabinet sales showed particular strength.

The company anticipated growth in the back half of the year, and that’s what happened, according to CEO Chris Klein.

““We have built on our momentum with another year of growth and market outperformance, and are well-positioned for continued strong performance going into 2016,” he said.

The company’s brands include MasterBrand cabinets, Moen faucets, Therma-Tru entry door systems, and Master Lock and SentrySafe security products.

Cabinet sales increased 33% in the fourth quarter from the prior year, including the impact of the Norcraft acquisition as the dealer channel and in-stock cabinet/vanities channel grew double digits. Cabinet operating margin before charges/gains improved 220 basis points to 10.0%.

Plumbing sales increased 7%, with growth across the U.S. wholesale and retail channels and China. Excluding the negative impact of currency, plumbing sales increased 10%.

Door sales were up 5% with growth in both the wholesale and retail channels.

Security sales increased 3% driven by U.S. retail and SentrySafe. Sales growth was partially offset by the negative impact of currency.

The company’s income statement includes the following:

Sales
15Q4:$1.22 billion
14Q4: $1.04 billion
% change up: 18%

15FY: $4.58 billion
14FY: $4.01 billion
% change: up 14%

Operating income
15Q4: $147 million
14Q4: $104 million
% change: up 42%

15FY: $538 million
14FY: $431 million
% change: up 25%

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New symposium for online sales

BY HBSDealer Staff

Launching in October, a new conference will provide a forum for industry retailers and suppliers to tackle the growing business of e-commerce.

The Home Improvement eRetailer Summit is slated for Oct. 26-28 at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort. The conference is being organized by Hardlines Inc. and Sonya Ruff Jarvis of Jarvis Consultants.

“In this industry, eRetailers are moving together to make home improvement online a more powerful presence,” said Jarvis. “By bringing together a focused group of high-caliber retailers interested in pursuing and increasing their online product sell, we’re creating an environment for these retail leaders to share their goals for increasing online sales with select supplier partners.”

The event will combine one-on-one meetings, speakers, seminars and networking, according to the organizers.

“The eRetailer Summit will provide a great opportunity for Internet retailers and the hardware/home improvement manufacturers to gain beneficial knowledge of the dynamic workings of e-commerce,” said Michael Hargrave, divisional merchandise manager for online tools at Sears.com and Kmart.com.

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Channellock celebrates 130 years

BY HBSDealer Staff

Channellock Inc. is celebrating its 130th anniversary in 2016, looking back on 13 decades of running a family owned and operated hand tool operation that's 100% Made in USA.

George B. DeArment founded the company in 1886 as the Champion Bolt & Clipper Co. The "Channellock" name actually didn't come around until 1932, when chief engineer Howard Manning created the tongue-and-groove plier the company is most well-known for.

“To be able to say that our world-famous pliers are still made in Meadville, Pennsylvania, USA is a source of pride to everyone at Channellock,” said chairman and CEO Bill DeArment. “Our company was founded in 1886 in northwest Pennsylvania on the principle of making the highest-quality tools, and nothing has changed.”

Well, almost nothing. Innovations have marked the company's growth in the form of site-specific laser-heat treating operations and the implementation of robotics in the forging, polishing and machining arenas.

The company has also added 3-D printing capabilities to speed up its prototype process.

“It has been a welcome addition to our tool design process because it allows us to see how an idea would actually function before advancing too far along the process,” said Jon DeArment, president and COO of Channellock Inc.

Today, the company offers more than 140 t

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