LMC hosts Forests Products Expo
LMC hosted its annual Forest Products & Building Materials Expo from October 24 through the 26th at the Marriott in Center City Philadelphia.
“The most important part of this event is the face-to-face meetings and the relationships built by hearing the stories of the LMC staff, our vendors, and the individual dealers,” said Kyra Bishop, LMC board of directors chairwoman. “It affords LMC dealers the chance to get some time with various vendors as well as get in some networking with others in the industry.”
The event kicked off on Tuesday, October 24, with several executive meetings including the meeting of the board of directors. Wednesday opened up with a forum on the 2018 outlook for the forest products industry. Three speakers—Jim Abbott of LP Building Products, Christian Gilbert of JD Irving Limited, and Wendy Minichiello of Weyerhaeuser—all discussed the upcoming year and gave their insights on what can be expected.
“Be bold,” advised Minichiello as she gave her predictions for 2018. She explained that the lumber market will be influenced by a number of factors next year, namely a high demand coupled with supply volatility due to the amount of Canadian lumber that will be available in the US market.
One hot topic at the forum was the issue of Millennials and when, or if, they will enter the housing market.
“Look at Millennials and history,” Dr. William Dunkelberg said. “They are still five or more years away from their peak home owner time.”
The general consensus throughout the event was that forecasters cannot rely on the actions of generations past when it comes to predicting how and when Millennials will enter the market.
Huttig sales up 4% in third quarter
Huttig Building Products reported third quarter 2017 net sales of $199.6 million, up 4% from net sales $192.8 million in the third quarter 2016. Huttig attributed the increase in net sales to the general increase in housing activity.
Millwork sales were flat in 2017 at $97.6 million, compared to 2016. Building products sales increased 7% percent in the third quarter to $82.6 million primarily due to increases in sales of Huttig-Grip products. Wood product sales increased 5% to $19.4 million during the quarter.
The St. Louis-based building products distributor also reported a third quarter net income of $1.3 million compared to a third quarter net income of $4.8 million in the third quarter a year ago. Huttig attributed the decline.
Huttig reported that its operating expenses increased $4.6 million to $38.2 million in 2017, compared to $33.6 million in 2016 and said, in a statement issued this afternoon, that the increase was primarily due to higher costs as a result of hiring additional sales and warehouse personnel related to our Huttig-Grip Division and repair and remodel growth initiatives. The increase was also impacted by legal fees incurred defending its Huttig-Grip Division’s right to compete in the fastener market.
“We continued to make significant progress in implementing our strategic plan during the third quarter and are rapidly approaching the sales execution stage of our growth initiatives," said Jon P. Vrabely, president and CEO of Huttig Building Products.
Huttig distributes its products through 27 distribution centers serving 41 states.
Huttig makes executive changes
Huttig, the St. Louis-based building products distributor, reported several changes to its executive team, effective Jan. 1, 2018.
Robert Furio, currently executive vice president of the Huttig-Grip Division, has been appointed executive vice president and chief operating officer. David Fishbein, will continue in his current role as executive vice president of Huttig-Grip Division, and has been appointed chief marketing officer.
Rebecca Kujawa, currently serving as Huttig vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary, has been appointed senior vice president supply chain management, general counsel and corporate secretary. Brian Robinson, currently the Huttig’s vice president and chief information officer, has been appointed senior vice president and chief information officer.
Oscar Martinez will continue in his current role as the Huttig vice president and chief financial officer while John Short will continue in his current role as the company’s vice president of human resources, the company said.
“This new executive leadership structure better supports the transformational change we are driving through the organization, leverages the industry and managerial experience of the executives that have recently joined Huttig across the entire company, and aligns the Huttig-Grip Division with our corporate structure and field operations,” Jon Vrabely, Huttig president and CEO, said in a prepared statement.