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BlueLinx narrows losses in Q1

Sales increase driven by higher volumes and a rise in commodity prices.

BY HBSDealer Staff

First quarter net sales at building products distributor BlueLinx increased nearly 4% to $663 million from first quarter 2019 sales of $639 million.

The sales increase was a result of higher volumes and commodity price inflation, BlueLinx said.

The Marietta, Ga.-based company also narrowed its losses, reporting net loss of $0.8 million for the period as compared to a net loss of $6.7 million in the prior first quarter.

BlueLinx announced numerous moves last month in response to the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on the distributor’s business. Changes included reductions in executive salaries and the company’s overall workforce being cut by 15%.

As of April 1, BlueLinx also reduced its term loan principal balance to approximately $69 million. The distributor reported that it has about $97 million in cash on hand.

BlueLinx distributes products to approximately 15,000 national, regional, and local dealers, as well as specialty distributors, national home centers, industrial, and manufactured housing customers.

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The Bottom Line: Sales rise 4% but the building product distributor reports a loss of $800,000.

What the CEO said: “Our first quarter results show the continuous and sustained progress that began in the second half of 2019 and a strong start to the year,” said Mitch Lewis, president and CEO.

“Our focus shifted towards the end of the first quarter as we implemented numerous actions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic including our highest priority of ensuring a safe and healthy workplace environment for our associates.  We cannot predict how the business and social restrictions stemming from the pandemic will ultimately impact the U.S. housing industry and broader economy, however, we do know that our business has weathered a wide range of economic cycles.”

Company info: The full first quarter 2020 report from BlueLinx is available here.

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