Former Wolseley exec to lead ProBuild
ProBuild Holdings has announced the appointment of Robert Marchbank, the former CEO of European operations for Wolseley, as its new CEO. Fred Marino, who had filled the role of interim CEO for the past several months, will continue to serve as vice chairman of the company’s board of directors.
“Rob has been in the industry for nearly 30 years and brings tremendous insight and experience to ProBuild with both a strong U.S. and international business background,” Marino said. “As CEO for Europe at Wolseley, Rob successfully ran multiple business operations across 19 countries. His ability to quickly identify issues and opportunities, adjust operations and improve performance for business units across a number of diverse markets will be invaluable to ProBuild.”
Marchbank, 51, served as CEO Europe for Wolseley from 2005 until March 2010. His tenure at the U.K.-based corporation stretches back to 1982, when he joined Ferguson Enterprises, the U.S. plumbing wholesale division owned by Wolseley, where he held various positions for 19 years. Marchbank moved up the ranks at Wolseley, serving as director of strategic planning in 2001 and director of information and processes in 2003. In 2008, he also took on the role of managing director of Wolseley U.K. and Ireland.
“I’ve spent my entire career in this industry, and I’m passionate about developing and implementing business strategies that drive profitable growth, foster innovation and improve efficiencies,” Marchbank said. “ProBuild has a unique national footprint and industry position, and I look forward to working with the dedicated team of industry leaders at ProBuild as we strive to continually improve our performance and prepare to take full advantage of any future market upturns.”
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Obituary: Emmett McCoy, founder of McCoy’s Building Supply
Emmett Francis McCoy, 88, of San Marcos, Texas, passed away Jan. 7.
McCoy founded McCoy Supply Co. in the 1950s, which later became McCoy’s Building Supply, based in San Marcos, Texas. His is a classic “Greatest Generation” story in which he and his wife, Miriam, raised a family and built a business. Starting in a building no larger than a four-car garage, McCoy’s, at the time of Emmett’s retirement in 1997, had grown to more than 90 locations with sales exceeding $400 million. He was a pioneer in the cash-and-carry building materials market, and today McCoy’s is one of the largest family-owned businesses in the industry.
San Marcos, Texas, Mayor Daniel Guerrero said: "We are deeply saddened by the passing of Emmett McCoy, who has been an outstanding business leader and benefactor in our community for many years. Our hearts go out to Miriam McCoy, the McCoy family and the McCoy Corporation employees."
Emmett was born in Houston on Feb. 27, 1923. He was the son of Frank and Margaret (Drees) McCoy, and grew up in Galveston, Texas. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Miriam Swanson McCoy; daughter Brenda McCoy Remme and husband Kaare; son Michael Emmett McCoy and wife Myra; Brian Francis McCoy and wife Wetonnah; daughter-in-law Cindy Cox McCoy; nine grandchildren and spouses; and 18 (soon to be 21) great-grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his son, Dennis Patrick McCoy, and grandson, Keith Evan Remme.
Emmett’s family moved to Galveston, Texas, when he was 4 years old, the same year Frank McCoy founded McCoy Roofing Co. in 1927. Working in the shipyards in Orange, Texas, at the beginning of WWII, he enlisted in the U.S. Army in April 1943. He served in an Engineer Aviation Battalion in the Pacific Theater, and he was discharged with the rank of Sergeant in January 1946. He and Miriam married the very next month in upstate New York and came back to Texas to start their life together.
A public memorial service will be held on Monday, Jan. 30, 2012, at 1:30 p.m. at the San Marcos Conference Center at the Embassy Suites Hotel, 1001 East McCarty Lane in San Marcos, with a reception to follow.
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Steep jump in improving housing markets
The list of improving U.S. housing markets tracked by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) almost doubled in January 2012 with the addition of 40 new metro areas. The NAHB’s First American Improving Markets Index (IMI) now counts 76 improving markets, up from 41 in December, with 31 states and the District of Columbia represented by at least one entry.
"The fact that the list of improving housing markets nearly doubled this month shows that a significant, positive trend is developing, and is even more relevant when you consider the expanding geographic distribution of the list,” said NAHB chairman Bob Nielsen, a home builder from Reno, Nev.
"While relatively small metropolitan areas continue to dominate the list of improving housing markets, it’s important to note that several major metros in diverse parts of the country have now joined the field as well, including such metros as Dallas, Denver, Honolulu, Indianapolis, Nashville and Philadelphia," added NAHB chief economist David Crowe. "This is an encouraging sign that gradually strengthening economic conditions are starting to take hold across a broader swath of America."
The index identifies metropolitan areas that have shown improvement from their respective troughs in housing permits, employment and house prices for at least six consecutive months. New entrants to the list in January include the following:
• Florence, Ala.;
• Tuscaloosa, Ala.;
• Fayetteville, Ark.;
• Greeley, Colo.;
• Bridgeport, Conn.;
• New Haven, Conn.;
• Cape Coral, Fla.;
• Jacksonville, Fla.;
• Punta Gorda, Fla.;
• Ames, Iowa;
• Des Moines, Iowa;
• Dubuque, Iowa;
• Elkhart, Ind.;
• Lafayette, Ind.;
• Lake Charles, La.;
• Worcester, Mass.;
• Grand Rapids, Mich.;
• Lansing, Mich.;
• Monroe, Mich.;
• Columbia, Mo.;
• Joplin, Mo.;
• Fargo, N.D.;
• Manchester, N.H.;
• Oklahoma City;
• Tulsa, Okla.;
• Corvallis, Ore.;
• Erie, Pa.;
• Chattanooga, Tenn.;
• Clarksville, Tenn.;
• Nashville, Tenn.;
• College Station, Texas;
• Victoria, Texas; and
• Madison, Wis.
Only five metropolitan areas dropped from the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index in January. These included Anchorage, Alaska; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Canton, Ohio; Scranton, Pa.; and Charleston, W.Va. A complete list of all 76 metropolitan areas currently on the IMI is available here.