At the new BMC: “Playing offense”
In his first interview with Home Channel News since becoming CEO of BMC Select—now simply BMC—Peter Alexander shared his optimism for the Boise, Idaho-based pro dealer, which emerged from reorganization in January. The firm is cash-flow positive, sitting on an untapped credit line of $40 million and poised to make a full operational profit in 2011, he said.
With 50 locations in nine states, BMC is a chiseled-down version of its former self—as BMHC, it had 182 units in 2006. But Alexander described today’s game as about quality, not about size. And the new BMC is prepared to “play offense,” he said.
Here’s more from the interview:
On the new BMC: “Bottom line is this: We are through the woods. We are going to be profitable next year, financially strong, operationally healthy, and we are playing offense. And it’s a whole lot of fun right now—in a market that’s down—to play offense. And it’s good to see our folks actually have a spring in their step.”
On the big four offerings: “The four major things we provide are LBM, truss, millwork and construction services. These are the four things we offer in every single market. We’re good at what we do by helping our customers become more successful. That’s our mission in life: Customers first, with services the customer needs.”
On the new logo: “We’re dropping the ‘Select’ piece off the name, so it’s just BMC. It’s how we answer the phone. It’s how customers know us. It reflects a return to the core of what we did best over the years.”
On expansion: “We’re not looking at dots on the map. We’re looking at expanding markets where we think we can get better penetration to the customer and service them better than we’re doing today.… One thing I’m adamant about is: I don’t care about being the largest footprint in the U.S., but we very much care about being the best-run company in the business and known for a high service level.”
On “best practice councils”: “We looked at millwork, truss, sales, administration, IT, credit, construction services and asked: ‘Who in the individual branches performs the best across the company?’ These people became our best practice participants and chairs. And we’re driving everything so that there are common processes and consistent metrics across the board. We’re eliminating the ‘federation of BMC locations’ approach and getting to a single-company approach. And we think that’s our key to success as we grow.”
Tillman appointed to lighting company board
Cree Inc., the Durham, N.C.-based manufacturer of LED lighting products, has elected Robert Tillman to its board of directors. Tillman, 67, is the former president and CEO of Lowe’s. After his retirement from Lowe’s in 2005, he became a member of the board of directors of the Bank of America Corp. until 2009.
Tillman will serve on the compensation committee of Cree’s board of directors, the announcement said.
Cree is a publicly traded company with annual revenues of $867 million. Its products include LED fixtures and bulbs for both the retail and commercial markets and semiconductor solutions for wireless and power applications.
Quarterly sales slip 3.2% at Huttig
Huttig Building Products, the St. Louis-based distributor, reported net sales of $127.2 million for its last fiscal quarter, which ended Sept. 30, a 3.2% decline from sales of $131.4 million in the same period of 2009.
Sales declined in building products but increased in all other product categories in 2010 from 2009, the company reported in an SEC filing. Millwork sales increased approximately 6% in 2010 to $58.4 million. Building product sales decreased approximately 15% in 2010 to $54.9 million. Wood products sales increased approximately 15% to $13.9 million in 2010.
The company posted a net loss of $4.5 million for the three-month period, compared with $1.1 million for the same period a year ago.
On Sept. 30, Huttig amended and restated its existing credit agreement with a four-year, $120 million, asset-based senior secured revolving credit facility, according to the filing.
Huttig is a two-step distributor of lumber, panels, decking, windows, doors, fasteners and other building materials. The company serves 41 states through 27 distribution centers.