The Ohio Construction Suppliers Association (OCSA) and the Southern Building Material Association (SBMA) will ask members to OK a plan to merge the two organizations, forming a new organization called the Building Material Suppliers Association (BMSA).

“BMSA will represent lumber dealers in five states and will add over 100 dealers and suppliers to our membership,” SBMA chairman Jon Stier, of Stier Supply, Irmo, S.C., told members in a Nov. 5 email. “For SBMA, this means our membership benefits and services can expand even more. It will allow us to improve and increase our many member services.”

The decision, he says, was talked about by the SBMA board for more than a year. The SBMA and OCSA boards met several times and concluded that bringing the two organizations together would benefit both groups.

“During the last five years of economic upheaval we have lost over 180 lumber yards in our four states,” Stier says. “Many of these companies were active members of SBMA. This, in turn, caused SBMA to lose revenue.”

“Although 2013 looks much better, we still have a need to grow our membership base,” he says. “ Your staff and board have worked hard to make sure your membership retains its value to you.”

Benefits of the merger, according to Stier, include:

  • Critical mass, greater political influence, larger pool of leaders,
  • Services increased and costs decreased for the members,
  • Dues stability,
  • Bringing two groups together in a single association for the long term benefit for the total membership,
  • More programs, communications, and membership benefits,
  • Increased numbers and combined staff talent pool will allow even greater advances in member services, especially education, training, and resource help,
  • Economies of scale allowing both association participants to maintain industry presence under a larger umbrella, and
  • An even more experienced professional staff.