Rolling out its ERP system, ProBuild hires Mohawk exec
Don Riley, the former chief information officer of carpet manufacturer Mohawk, has been selected as the new executive VP supply chain and technology for ProBuild. This surprise appointment, announced Nov. 23, reached outside the LBM industry to fill a role overseeing the largest pro dealer’s supply chain, information technology and manufacturing organizations.
Reporting to Riley will be Paul Dodge, senior VP supply chain; Lonnie Bernardoni, senior VP manufacturing and business process improvement lead; and John Huber, chief information officer.
According to the announcement, Riley’s job will be to integrate the company’s IT, supply chain and manufacturing divisions. “Riley’s duties will also include the planning and implementation of enterprise IT systems in support of business operations in order to improve cost-effectiveness and service quality. Additionally, Riley will direct and manage ProBuild’s technology infrastructure and environment, including the design and development of business-focused application solutions to support ProBuild’s business operations.”
A tall order, given the scope of the company’s attempt to integrate all its lumberyard acquisitions into one Oracle-based ERP system. An initial rollout of the “ProEdge” platform on the East Coast to former Strober units did not go smoothly, and a series of snags and cost overruns have followed as the company has tried to make it work on both the front and back end at other ProBuild locations. But ProBuild is determined to move forward with ProEdge and has scheduled more rollouts for next year. Jennifer Thurman, a spokeswoman for ProBuild, would not disclose the exact number of lumberyards or their locations, but she called the ProEdge rollout “a top priority” for the Denver-based company.
“We have already begun additional deployment efforts [this year],” Thurman said. “In 2012, we will continue to focus on deploying ProEdge and driving new and enhanced capabilities and technology, delivering competitive advantage into the marketplace.”
Leading the charge will be Riley, who has a strong background in both information technology and logistics. As the senior VP and CIO at Mohawk, the 49-year-old executive was responsible for the carpet manufacturer’s global information systems and strategies and its logistic functions in North America. The company operates 50 distribution centers and 250 wholesale outlet stores and operates its own trucking fleet.
Prior to Mohawk, Riley worked for Kellwood Co., a privately held, $2.4 billion women’s apparel firm. During his six years there, Riley implemented a new ERP and warehouse management system as the company’s chief information officer.
Riley also has 13 years of sales experience earlier in his career, when he worked for information technology and services firm EDS.
“Don brings significant experience to ProBuild, having led the successful implementation and extension of enterprise systems in previous roles,” said Fred Marino, president and CEO of ProBuild. “A critical element of our vision is the successful integration of technology into all areas of our business. We believe that technology will transform the home-building industry, and it is our goal to take a significant leadership role in that transformation. We look forward to the expertise and leadership Don brings to help us achieve our vision.”
ProBuild is the nation’s largest LBM chain, with more than 435 locations serving 45 U.S. states.
NLBMDA applauds restoration of higher FHA loan limits
The National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association (NLBMDA) applauded Congress for reinstating the higher conforming loan limits for the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) through 2013, helping reduce uncertainty for an already fragile housing market.
By increasing the loan limits guaranteed by FHA to $729,750, Congress has taken a step to stabilize home values while enabling creditworthy consumers to get home loans with the best mortgage rates, lowest fees and better down payment requirements, the NLBMDA said.
"We thank the Republican and Democratic leadership in Congress for backing legislation that supports the recovering housing market, creates jobs, and allows access to affordable and reliable financing to responsible home buyers and owners," said Michael O’Brien, NLBMDA president and CEO.
Despite the action by Congress on FHA loans, the lower Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac conforming loan limits of $629,500, which went into effect Oct. 1, remain in place. The NLBMDA said it will continue its efforts in restoring the higher conforming loan limits for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
Former Wolseley CEO to lead Morrison Supply
Morrison Supply Co., the fourth-largest distributor of plumbing and HVAC supplies in the United States, has sold a majority share to private equity firm Advent International.
Founded in 1917, Morrison is now the largest distributor of plumbing supplies in the southwestern United States. The company has 77 branches and showrooms, located in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas and Kansas. Morrison has several lines of business, including plumbing, heating, ventilation & air conditioning (HVAC), industrial pipes, valves & fittings, oil & gas and waterworks.
Morrison Supply intends to use the new funding to expand its presence in the plumbing and HVAC supply market, particularly in its current market. Chip Hornsby, the former CEO of Wolseley, will join the company as CEO and will lead Morrison in the next phase of its expansion.
Wolseley is the parent company of Ferguson Enterprises, one of the largest plumbing and HVAC supplier in the United States and a competitor of Morrison Supply.
“Morrison’s core strength is the quality of its people,” Hornsby said. “And we believe this transaction will be very positive for our employees, as the company’s expansion should lead to new and exciting opportunities for our people and their families. Equally, our vendor partners and customers stand to gain from our growth and financial strength.”
Scott Sangalli, Morrison’s former CEO and principal owner for the past 25 years, will continue as an investor in the company. Darrell Hawkins and Charlie Allen will continue in their roles as president and chief financial officer, respectively. Additionally, they will remain investors in the company and deeply committed to its ongoing success and expansion.
Advent operating partner Wes Clark will join the company as non-executive chairman. Clark is the former president and chief operating officer of W.W. Grainger, a leading $8 billion distributor of industrial maintenance and repair supplies. He also served as CEO of Morton Salt, the largest U.S. producer and distributor of sodium derivatives.
Advent has been an active investor in building products, distribution and construction supply for more than 20 years and has invested in more than 20 companies in these sectors. In its most recent transaction in the space, Advent acquired Bradco Supply in 2008 and subsequently merged it with ABC Supply in 2010 to create the largest U.S. distributor of roofing supplies and complementary exterior building materials. Since its founding in 1984, Advent has raised $26 billion in private equity capital and, through its buyout programs, has invested in more than 270 companies valued at more than $60 billion in 35 countries.