LUMBERYARDS

Universal Supply acquires cabinet company

BY Ken Clark

New Jersey pro dealer Universal Supply has purchased American Classic Cabinet Co., a kitchen and bath showroom in Haddonfield, N.J. This acquisition adds a fourth design center to the LBM chain, which also operates showrooms in Trenton, Hammonton and Egg Harbor Township. 

In addition to selections by Rutt and Signature, American Classic Co. will now offers cabinets by top-rated national manufacturer Wellborn, as well as a full line of solid-surface countertops from granite to Cambria. The Haddonfield showroom is being re-designed to fully demonstrate the depth and breadth of its offerings. 

“I know this expanded product offering will bring new opportunity to builders, remodelers and contractors from Medford to Moorestown to Audubon,” said American Classic Cabinet Co. founder Gary Okulanis.

“We are eager to partner with [American’s] customers on all their building supply needs, such as roofing, siding, windows, doors, millwork and decking, in addition to cabinetry,” said Universal Supply president Jeff Umosella.

With 11 locations in Southern Jersey, Universal Supply Co. serves the entire state, as well as southeastern Pennsylvania and northern Delaware. The company is part of US LBM Holdings, based in Green Bay, Wis.

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Simpson Strong-Tie honored by 84 Lumber

BY Brae Canlen

84 Lumber Co. has named Simpson Strong-Tie as its 2012 Vendor Partner of the Year. The pro dealer, ranked sixth on the HCN Pro Dealer Industry Scoreboard, does business with more than 4,000 vendors, according to the announcement. 

“Across our entire footprint, Simpson Strong-Tie has supported 84 Lumber on our 2012 key initiatives, including cost structure, inventory control, retail sales for the DIYer, big national builders and all customers in between,” said 84 Lumber director of purchasing Mitch Wagner. “They have exhibited true partnership.”

The award was presented at an 84 Lumber ceremony on August 25 to 26, 2012, in Farmington, Pa.

“Being named Vendor Partner of the Year is an exciting accomplishment, and on behalf of our company and all of our employees, I thank 84 Lumber for this honor. We look forward to continuing our longstanding relationship with 84 Lumber and are committed to helping them grow their business,” noted Simpson Strong-Tie president Terry Kingsfather.

84 Lumber operates 252 stores and component manufacturing plants in 30 states, representing the top 130 markets in the country. The company’s sales in 2011 were reported at $1.43 billion. 

Based in Pleasanton, Calif., Simpson Strong-Tie offers an extensive product of connectors, fasteners, fastening systems, lateral-force resisting systems, anchors and products for concrete repair, strengthening and protection.

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Windows and doors group sees slight improvement to forecast

BY Ken Clark

The Window & Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA) and the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) have jointly released an August 2012 update to the 2011/2012 U.S. Industry Statistical Review and Forecast. 

The updated study predicts a slight improvement in architectural door shipments in 2012 over earlier forecasts.

Nonresidential construction declined slightly in 2011 and is forecasted to continue to remain slow through 2012, tempering growth in the non-residential architectural interior door categories.

According to the updated study’s data, multi-family and single-family starts are expected to experience a slightly better increase than what was initially thought, up to 19% over 2011 with additional increases in 2013 and 2014. Residential improvement expenditures are expected to see a similar shift.

As of mid-year, residential skylights are tracking at a growth rate slightly higher than the 2011 volume. New construction skylight activity has proven to be greater than expected with double-digit growth percentages. Remodeling and replacement skylight activity has fallen behind initial expectations with only minor growth, though the replacement market is benefiting from weather-related replacement in the first half of the year. 

The updated study continues to show little change in the segmentation for residential interior door material types over the next five years. However, significant volume is expected to return to the entry and interior door market as new construction demand is expected to grow at double-digit rates, outpacing remodeling and replacement activity as the housing market recovers.

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