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Ferguson enters NYC with acquisition

BY Brae Canlen

Ferguson Enterprises, one of the largest wholesale plumbing distributors in the United States, has acquired Davis & Warshow, a leading residential and commercial plumbing supplier in metro New York, through a stock transaction.

Davis & Warshow is an 87-year-old company that began with a Lower East Side storefront. Headquartered in Maspeth, N.Y., it operates eight wholesale and seven showroom locations. The plumbing supplier will continue to conduct business under the Davis & Warshow name with the existing management team remaining in place.

Ferguson CEO Frank Roach commented, "The acquisition of a long-standing, well-respected distributor such as Davis & Warshow allows us to enter the New York City metropolitan area with a solid platform for growth and expansion."

Davis & Warshow is Ferguson’s sixth acquisition over the past 14 months. Headquartered in Newport News, Va., Ferguson, a part of London-based Wolseley, ended its 2012 fiscal year with sales of $9.7 billion and approximately 18,000 associates in almost 1,300 locations. Ferguson and its subsidiaries serve customers in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the Caribbean.

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Owens Corning lowers guidance

BY Brae Canlen

Owens Corning has lowered its earnings expectations for 2012 based on a weak selling environment for its roofing and composites. Full-year adjusted earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) for the company are now expected to be in the range of $280 million to $310 million, with the primary uncertainty through the remainder of the year attributed to roofing volumes.

Weakness in the U.S. roofing shingle market, combined with a mid-September price increase, resulted in the company lowering its roofing revenue outlook for the full-year, now estimated to be approximately $2 billion.

In the second half of 2012, composites demand will be impacted by lower global industrial production, particularly in Europe, as well as by the weaker U.S. roofing market. In response, Owens Corning has initiated further production curtailments to bring inventories in line with previously discussed year-end targets.

The company maintains its earlier guidance of significantly narrowing losses for its insulation business in 2012. The effects of higher volumes as a result of an improving U.S. housing market, as well as continued operating leverage in the business, continue to support this outlook.

Owens Corning will announce its full third-quarter 2012 results on Oct. 24, 2012, prior to the opening of the market.

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Ply Gem Windows to add 200 jobs

BY Brae Canlen

Ply Gem Windows will expand its facility in Rocky Mount, Va., adding 200 jobs and upgrading new extrusion tooling, equipment, products and information technology. The Cary, N.C.-based manufacturer of residential and light commercial window and patio doors expects to complete these capital investments at its Rocky Mount plant by the end of 2014.

New hires will include such jobs as unit assemblers, coordinators, value stream leaders, process owners, process engineers, technicians and IT support.

“We are focused on enhancing Ply Gem’s product offering and customer experience to support planned growth from the housing market recovery, as well as improved market share from new customers and products,” said Lynn Morstad, president, Ply Gem Windows.

The investment was made possible, in part, by grants from the Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission, Franklin County and the Town of Rocky Mount. The company also is receiving assistance from the Virginia Jobs Investment Program through the Virginia Department of Business Assistance.

The current manufacturing facility was established in 1939 and acquired by Ply Gem in 2004. Over the years, the plant has manufactured such products as storm windows, aluminum windows, and window and door frames.

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