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Slide show: STIHL Timbersports showdown

BY HBSDealer Staff

Nineteen of the nation’s top lumberjack athletes went head-to-head in sawdust-and-chip-flying action during the STIHL Timbersports Series U.S. championship.

“We couldn’t have asked for a better way to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the STIHL Timbersports Series,” said Brad Sorgen, executive producer of the event. “We drew a great crowd in Central Park, and we had the opportunity to showcase the highest level of lumberjack athletic competitions to an entirely new and excited fanbase. The 30th anniversary was an incredible success for the Series.”

The event will be broadcast on ABC Oct. 11, 18 and 25.

In addition to earning the title of the best lumberjack athlete in the country, West Virginia native Matt Cogar was awarded a brand new Ram Truck for his win. Cogar will also represent the U.S. team at the World Championship in Poland in November.

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Changes at Gordon Lumber

BY HBSDealer Staff

Gordon Lumber’s newly elected board of directors will be led by Pamela Goetsch, a descendant of the founder of the seven-unit Ohio lumberyard company.

With a new board in place, the company plans to refine its Ohio property holdings. Following a relocation of its component plant operations from Oak Harbor to Findlay, Gordon Lumber plans to sell its existing Oak Harbor facility. Additionally, since the company's Fremont office space no longer supports its growth initiative, it is also selling that property and will seek out new corporate office space that better supports the company's plans for expansion.

Joining Goetsch on the five-member board are returning board members Jeff Dornbusch and Mark Hablitzel, along with new board members Jennie Gwilym and Betsy Snow.

Goetsch is great granddaughter of company founder Washington Gordon.           

"Our board is committed to the company's long-term strategic plan and associated initiatives to support the continued growth and profitability of Gordon Lumber," Goetsch said. "We are realigning our composition, focus and expertise to support the management team and employees to create an even more profitable operation that brings more value to shareholders.

"The changes made today align with the three principles that reflect the long-held values of Gordon Lumber and its founders: effect change for the long haul, not for the quick return on our investment; focus on doing things the right way; and concentrate on our core businesses and rural customer base."

So far this year, Gordon Lumber is highly profitable and on track for a strong year, said president Erin Leonard. "Our entire team is highly disciplined and focused on revitalizing our company,” he said. “Every employee is dedicated to making changes that result in the growth of Gordon Lumber, meeting the needs of our valued customers and being sharply competitive in our industry."

The company also added Rhonda Taylor, who has joined Gordon Lumber as the company's VP finance and controller. Taylor brings with her almost 20 years of accounting experience and most recently served as Controller at Fostoria Ethanol.

"These are exhilarating times for Gordon Lumber," said Leonard. "We're in a positive growth mode that includes enforcing tighter inventory controls, management commitment to efficient operations and making strategic new hires."

Gordon Lumber operates six lumberyards and a component plant in northwest Ohio. The company was founded in 1868 and employs approximately 100 people. Annual sales for the company are roughly $40 million.

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Market Recap: RISI Crow’s Construction Materials Cost Index

BY HBSDEALER Staff

A price index of lumber and panels used in actual construction for July 10, 2015 

*Western – regional species perimeter foundation; Southern – regional species slab construction. 

Crow's Market Recap — A condensed recap of the market conditions for the major North American softwood lumber and panel products as reported in Crow's Weekly Market Report.

Lumber: Western SPF mills tended to hold quotes for #2&Btr at the prior week’s levels, still reporting order files extended out into the end of the month. Meanwhile, urgency among eastern mills to find business increased, triggering discounts where necessary. Sales activity at the mill level was sluggish to moderate in the Southern Pine market. Buyers covered immediate needs with mixed tallies that were often highly specified, which tended to limit the depth mills needed to discount to sell volumes. Dry Coastal species prices were firm and edged higher in some instances. Producers tended to raise quotes on wide widths more than narrows. This occurred despite producers admitting that the number of inbound calls dropped off, forcing more outbound calls. Inland lumber buyers reported “slim pickings” when it came to mill offerings. Even though demand has slowed over the past few weeks, availability remained tight. Those stud prices that did not remain at the same levels as the prior week were narrowly mixed. In response to the various prices and range of quotes, a few traders dubbed the market “confused.” Radiata Pine Mldg&Btr is tight, but it is “pretty rich when compared with Ponderosa,” according to one source. Moreover, some price adjustments have been made in Radiata Pine blanks. Some items in Ponderosa Pine Shop show softening of a sort that has not occurred for months. Ponderosa Pine #2 Shop, for instance, shows weakness and is discounting. The general consensus among Ponderosa Pine 4/4 board producers is that “activity is subdued” and prices are “flat.” Mill sales activity has, indeed, been more subdued than most producers expected this year. Eastern White Pine producers report a generally balanced market. Forest fires were the primary topic of conversation among Canadian Western Red Cedar traders. Some producers reported a moderately slower week of sales.

Panels: OSB market participants are less than enthusiastic about current conditions. Pricing continues to sag in all regions, and most of the business being done is contract – very little cash wood. Trading in the Southern Pine plywood market remained sluggish, leaving the market with prompt availability and sagging prices. Wholesalers continued to sell slow moving volumes purchased prior to the market downturn. The Western Fir plywood market remained in a bit better shape than Southern Pine. Although mills tried to hold quotes at last week’s market levels, some discounts were apparent. Canadian plywood had a good solid week according to all sources, with prices climbing a full five points from last week’s Crow’s net level. Order files moved out to August 10 for most producers by the end of the week, and some manufacturers went off the market. Sales activity in the particleboard market continued at a decent pace although traders reported the usual summer slowdown. Moulding manufacturers continue to buy MDF at a steady and strong pace.

For more on RISI, click here.

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