Building material co-op Do it Best Corp. emerged from its fall market last weekend reporting record sales of $8.8 million. The Fort Wayne, Ind.-based co-op also announced that one of its members, R.P. Lumber, hit the $1 billion mark in lifetime total purchases.
The October Market held at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, featured the highest number of attendees which helped drive both greater volumes and bigger sales for members, the co-op says. Although the co-op officials declined to provide actual attendance numbers, only to say that the fall market was one of the strongest in recent years.
Sales for the market’s Sneak Peek totaled $8.8 million – a new market record – with members saving up to 50% on those products. Member companies use the high-margin items to drive traffic for Black Friday sales and other special events throughout the year.
“The October market always provides our members a wealth of opportunities to learn, connect and plan for the year ahead,” says Do it Best Corp. president and CEO Bob Taylor.
“Our members recognize our markets for the invaluable opportunities they provide their businesses each year, including the incredible savings opportunities, the wide array of free, world-class training sessions available from industry experts, and the ability to fuel their growth through our consistently high rebates," he says.
Do it Best reported total member rebates for the year of $116.4 million, an increase over 2012, marking the 10th consecutive year of rebates exceeding $100 million. This year’s rebate total included five Do it Best Corp. members who each received rebates of more than $1 million.
“No one in the industry matches our supply-chain excellence and lowest cost of operations, while maintaining zero long-term debt,” Taylor says. “We are committed to being effective stewards of our members’ investment in their co-op. And we achieve that by being the most efficient co-op in the industry, which has enabled us to deliver over $1 billion in rebates to our members in just the last decade.”
The co-op also noted that the Bob Plummer family, members since 1978, reached an impressive milestone in 2013, surpassing the $1 billion mark in lifetime total purchases for their business through the co-op.
R.P. Lumber, founded by Bob and Donna Plummer in 1977, is the first Do it Best Corp. member to reach the $1 billion mark in lifetime total purchases, and marks a notable milestone in the company’s remarkable journey and growth over nearly four decades.
“From its very humble beginnings to the incredible success it is today, the story of R.P. Lumber is one that perfectly captures what it means to do it best,” says Taylor. “As their co-op partner, we are excited to see them reach this milestone, and we are honored to play a part in helping R.P. Lumber continue to grow and succeed.”
The Plummers opened their first R.P. Lumber location after purchasing an abandoned lumberyard in Staunton, Ill., a building that lacked working plumbing and was heated only by a single coal-burning, pot-bellied stove. Today, the company has 51 locations and a truss plant throughout Illinois and Missouri.
“Looking at how far we’ve come, I can say God has been very good and we’ve been truly blessed,” said Bob Plummer. “We’ve worked hard, our employees have worked hard, and the people at Do it Best Corp. have worked hard on our behalf.”
Reaching $1 billion in total purchases isn’t the only milestone R.P. Lumber is reaching this year. In addition, the company will receive a member rebate of more than a $1 million from Do it Best Corp. at its October market. It’s the second consecutive year in which R.P. Lumber has received a rebate of at least $1 million from the co-op.
Based in Fort Wayne, Ind., Do it Best Corp. is a U.S.-based, member-owned integrated hardware, lumber and building materials buying cooperative in the home improvement industry. The co-op reported 2013 annual sales of $2.8 billion, a 4.4% increase over 2012 sales of $2.7 billion, and 2013 net income of $372,000, compared to 2012 net income of $511,000. Do it Best has more than 3,800 member-owned locations in the United States and in 53 foreign countries.