LUMBERYARDS

California Redwood Co. completes purchase of Siskiyou Lumber

BY HBSDealer Staff

The California Redwood Co. completed the acquisition of the assets of Siskiyou Lumber Products, a California-based company specializing in remanufacturing and wholesale lumber distribution.

Siskiyou’s Woodland, Calif., operations and its Ukiah, Calif., fence plant will now operate as part of The California Redwood Co., distributing redwood lumber products, Douglas fir lumber and treated lumber.

"A year ago, we announced a long-term marketing strategy of working with retailers to better understand and serve the needs of consumers," said Carl Schoenhofer, VP and general manager for The California Redwood Co., based in Eureka, Calif. "The acquisition of Siskiyou Lumber Products provides us the opportunity to get closer to consumers and allows us to offer a full range of premium redwood products directly to retail."

The products include decking, railing, fencing and garden accessories.

"We also plan to expand our product development efforts and value-added applications for redwood," Schoenhofer said.

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UCLA study: Slow going through the end of the year

BY Brae Canlen

The Anderson Forecast, a widely watched outlook for both California and the nation, predicted “normal growth" for the U.S. economy through 2013, with "normal" defined as 3% GDP growth but unemployment stuck at high rates.

The June 2011 report, published by economists at the UCLA Anderson School of Management, called for slow growth through the end of the year in California, as the state attempts to re-generate the 1.3 million jobs lost in the recession.

UCLA senior economist Jerry Nickelsburg cited two key elements impeding California’s recovery. The first lies in the national forecast, which calls for slower growth in consumer spending. The second is a shift occurring in the residential construction sector.

The shift in residential construction is rooted in demographics and geography, Nickelsburg said. The demographic shift, confirmed by the 2010 census, suggests a significant shift in demand toward condominiums and apartments. As a result, future construction will move toward multi-family units. This will hurt inland California because workers are less likely to move inland into an apartment and commute toward the coast. Fewer construction workers are required to build multi-family units, according to the forecast, and the inland areas of California are more dependent on construction to fuel their regional economies than coastal areas. 

“Taken together, these shifts are going to be a significant drag on inland California economies that in turn becomes a drag on the state’s economy as a whole,” the report said.

The forecast calls for 1.7% employment growth in 2011 in California, 2.4% in 2012 and 3.1% in 2013.

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Help wanted: Universal Forest Products seeks CEO

BY HBSDealer Staff

Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Universal Forest Products has announced that CEO Michael Glenn is retiring due to health reasons and to make way for new leadership to "build on Universal’s strengths and prepare for future opportunity." The board of directors is currently in the process of evaluating candidates for the position. Glenn, who was appointed CEO in 2006, has agreed to stay on until a new CEO is named.

"I’m proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish in the toughest years in our 56-year history," said Glenn, who has been with the company for 37 years. "I’m proud we were able to generate cash flow, pay off more than $320 million of debt, and remain profitable at a time when others in our industry were struggling to survive. 

"But closing or consolidating nearly 30 operations and cutting thousands of employees as we implemented strategies to carry us into the future have taken a toll," he added, "and for the sake of my family and of my health, I decided it was time to hand over the reins to new leadership, who will build on Universal’s strengths and prepare for future opportunity." 

Chairman William Currie said: “The board thanks Mike for his many contributions to Universal. He created success in plants, regions and divisions in his long career at Universal.”

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