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Wolseley makes some management changes to shave costs

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Wolseley parent of U.S.-based pro dealers Stock Building Supply and Ferguson, has shaken up its European management structure in a bid to save costs, according to a report in the Financial Times.

Nigel Sibley, who served as managing director of the company’s U.K. and Irish business, will leave the company in a move meant “to reduce management duplication,” according to the report. Sibley will be replaced by Rob Marchbank, who serves as a member of the board of directors and head of Wolseley’s European operations — he will take on both roles after the transition.  

Additionally, the company opted to put European human resources head Bob Morrison in charge of U.K. human resources, adding to his current role and thus eliminating a separate U.K. HR head position.

“We took action in light of deterioration of market conditions in the U.K. It’s a move to reduce management duplication and cut costs as opposed to a performance issue or a change in strategy,” the company said in a statement.

Wolseley has seen weakness in the U.K. market as well as in its operations in the United States. Earlier this month, Wolseley posted an 8 percent drop in revenues for its North American division during the 11-month period ended June 30. Earnings for the division, which also includes Wolseley’s Canadian operations, fell 46 percent.

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Boozer Lumber goes out of business

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Boozer Lumber, a two-unit dealer founded in 1946, closed its doors last week after six decades in the lumber business. The Columbia, S.C.-base dealer, which operated a home center and lumberyard, along with a showroom and component manufacturing facility, served South Carolina and parts of North Carolina and Georgia. The business generated $46 million in revenues in 2006, according to the Home Channel News Top 350 Pro Dealer list.

The decision to shut down Boozer Lumber was made last month when owner Dale Boozer, whose father founded the company, could not find a buyer, according to an article in The State, a local newspaper. The pro dealer spent approximately $4 million on expansions and upgrades in 2005 and 2006, according to the newspaper.

The business continued to ship its final orders but has been selling off inventory, equipment and property over the past few weeks. Approximately 160 people lost their jobs as a result of the closure, which became official on July 25.

Atelephone recording at Boozer’s headquarters now says that the company is “regrettably no longer open for business.”

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HD Supply reopens Ft. Myers location

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Specialty tools distributor HD Supply White Cap has reopened a newly renovated warehouse facility in Ft. Myers, Fla.

The 38,000-square-foot location features a merchandise showroom and an open warehouse format, catering to White Cap’s base of large- and medium-sized professional contractors.

“The open warehouse format has enhanced our ability to offer a broader array of products to professional contractors in southwest Florida,” said HD Supply White Cap Florida area director Mikel Valett, in a statement.

Among the assortment of around 2,000 items are numerous specialty tools and accessories, as well as tilt-up hardware and brace rentals, power tools, stormwater pollution prevention products, welding supplies, lightweight construction equipment and job site and personal safety equipment.

The specialty distributor plans a grand reopening event on July 31, which will include facility tours and new product displays.

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