LUMBERYARDS

Luxor reports strong sales, new EWP line

BY Ken Clark

Luxor Industrial Corp., a Canadian engineered wood products manufacturer, is working on developing a heavy timber line for specialty wood products, the company said in its financial filings. The Vancouver B.C.-based firm has completed initial engineering and is meeting with interested North American customers. Luxor currently focuses on sales in the industrial and commercial markets for wood products, a market it focused on in 2008 after the residential downturn.

Company sales for the 12 months ended Dec. 31, 2011, were $3.2 million, a 170% increase over sales of $1.2 million in 2010. Sales for the three months ended Dec. 31, 2011, were approximately $970,000, compared with approximately $330,000 for the same period in 2010.

Luxor attributes the revenue increase mainly to sales of specialty wood products to oil and gas exploration companies and the wholesale of engineered wood products.

Net income, excluding non-cash items (amortization expense and stock option plan expense) for 2011 was $342,397, compared with a net loss of $231,909 in 2010.

Luxor manufactures and markets a patented wood-frame floor system. It also   manufactures other building components, architectural and utility wood products, as well as distributing laminated beams and offering various custom wood-cutting services. Luxor also offers coating services, which protect wood against mold, decay, and insects and provide fire protection. 

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Osmose sold; management team remains

BY Ken Clark

Buffalo, N.Y.-based Osmose Holdings, a manufacturer of wood preservation technology, will be acquired by investment funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management, of Los Angeles. 

Osmose’s existing management team will remain in place, including James Spengler, president and CEO of Osmose.

“Osmose has built very strong brand recognition and a solid reputation for innovative products and services, excellent customer service, best in class safety performance and good growth prospects across all its business segments, which attracted Oaktree to seek a partnership with management to pursue strategic growth plans,” Spengler said, in a prepared statement. “Oaktree can provide substantial additional resources and is committed to investing in Osmose to help us expand our product and service offerings and to better meet and exceed our customers’ expectations.” 

Terms of the deal were not revealed.

Ian Schapiro, managing director of Oaktree’s GFI Energy Group, said: “We look forward to working with Osmose’s world-class management team to continue to build on the company’s success.”

Osmose, a 78-year-old privately held company, was advised in this transaction by Western Reserve Partners. 

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Boise boosts sales in Q1

BY Brae Canlen

Boise Cascade Holdings has announced sales of $587 million for its first fiscal quarter of 2012, a 21% increase over the same quarter a year ago. The wood products company reported first-quarter net income of $1.66 million, compared with a $19.0 million loss during the first quarter of 2011. 

As of March 31, Boise Cascade had total available liquidity of $371.9 million, with $164.4 million in cash and committed bank line availability of $207.5 million.

First-quarter 2012 revenues and earnings were higher on improved demand relative to the year-ago quarter. While the company’s revenues and earnings continue to be negatively impacted by depressed demand for the products it distributes and manufactures, the mild winter in the United States, improved residential construction activity, and its market share gains in engineered wood products (EWP) and plywood contributed to a better start of the year.

With the more favorable start to the year, the Blue Chip consensus forecast for U.S. housing starts for 2012 has been revised upward to 740,000 as of April 10, 2012, according to Boise’s press release. The final U.S. housing starts level reported for 2011 was 609,000.

“The demand level in the first quarter was stronger following the tough industry conditions and weather in 2011,” said Tom Carlile, CEO. “We are hopeful the increase in sales activity and our earnings will carry through to the rest of the year. Our liquidity puts us in a good position to respond to any improvement in the markets and take advantage of business opportunities.”

Building Materials Distribution (BMD) segment sales were $451.4 million in the first quarter 2012, up 19% from the same quarter a year ago. Volumes for the segment were up approximately 16%, with prices up about 3%.

Wood Products segment sales in the first quarter 2012 were $211.1 million, up 36% from the same quarter a year ago. The increase in sales was due primarily to increased plywood volumes and prices and increased EWP shipments, offset in part by lower EWP sales price realizations.

The company said it anticipates a “below normal demand” for the products it distributes and manufactures. Industry commodity wood product prices could be volatile in response to operating rates and inventory levels in various distribution channels. “We expect to manage our production levels to our sales demand, which will likely cause us to operate some of our facilities below their capacity,” the statement read.

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