Canfor to close another sawmill
Canfor Corp., one of North America’s largest lumber producers, is closing another West Coast sawmill, in Chetwynd, B.C., which will result in 188 employees being laid off.
Vancouver-based Canfor attributed the closure to poor lumber markets and the impact of a high Canadian dollar. Additionally, Canfor cited those same problems in laying off 300 workers at four sawmills in British Columbia for an indefinite period late last month.
BlueLinx announces consolidation
BlueLinx Holdings, a nationwide distributor of building materials, has announced plans to eliminate underperforming skus from its assortment as part of a cost-cutting effort. The company plans to “aggressively sell through its inventory in these skus” commencing in the fourth quarter, according to a prepared statement.
No details were given on which skus have been targeted, or how many are involved.
BlueLinx will also consolidate its Atlanta headquarters and sales center into one building, thereby saving a projected $1 million to $1.5 million in operating expenses in 2008. Both buildings are leased facilities, and declines in headcount have produced excess capacity.
According to the statement, both moves were prompted by the “prolonged downturn in the housing market.”
Toro sees big rise in fourth-quarter earnings
Outdoor equipment-maker Toro reported fourth-quarter net earnings of $6.5 million, up 44.5 percent from 4.5 million in the same period last year.
The company reported net sales of $332.5 million, a 0.9 percent increase from sales of $329.5 million last year.
For the full year, earnings were $142.4 million, up 10.3 percent from 2006 earnings of $129.1 million. Net sales for the fiscal year were $1.87 billion, up 2.2 percent from last year’s sales of $1.83 billion.
“In challenging market conditions, our performance in fiscal 2007 highlights the strength and resiliency of our company,” said Michael Hoffman, chairman and CEO. “We believe these results indicate that Toro has outperformed in a soft market.”
The company attributed growth in its international professional segment sales, which helped offset softness in the residential segment in the United States. International net sales increased 9.6 percent over 2006.
Toro is a worldwide manufacturer of outdoor maintenance and beautification products for home, recreation and commercial landscapes.