Masonite's North America segment saw its first-quarter adjusted EBITDA rise by 57% from a year ago to total $12.9 million, while net segment sales grew 22.5% to hit $281.6 million for the same period, the company reported today. The growth was driven largely by incremental sales from acquisitions and favorable first-quarter unit volumes but was offset in part by product pricing and product mix, the company said.

“Continued cost control allowed us to slightly exceed the Q1 expectations we provided last quarter, despite the continuation of a difficult pricing environment–particularly in North American residential doors,” said president and CEO Fred Lynch in a statement.

Overall, the Tampa, Fla.-based door manufacturer's first quarter profits fell to a loss of $1.4 million from a gain of $173,000 a year ago. Net sales increased 14.8% from the year-ago period to total $400 million for the first quarter. Adjusted EBITDA increased 5.9% from the year-ago period to $19.7 million, with recent acquisitions boosting net sales and adjusted EBITDA for the period over the first quarter of 2011 by $34.9 million and $3.3 million, respecitively. The company shrunk its operating loss to $1.5 million from a loss of $2.6 million a year ago.

Masonite defines adjusted EDBITDA as net income (loss) attributable to Masonite plus: depreciation; amortization; share based compensation expense; loss (gain) on sale and impairment of property, plant and equipment; restructuring costs; interest expense (income), net; other expense (income), net; income tax expense (benefit); loss (income) from discontinued operations; and net income (loss) attributable to noncontrolling interest.

The company reported gross profit margins of 11.8% for the period, down slightly from 12.5% a year ago, representing 70-basis-point-decline largely due to increased material and distribution costs and offset in part by a drop in depreciation expense included in cost of goods sold.

During the period the company acquired Canadian interior wood door manufacturer Les Portes Baillargeon and announced the April acquisition of Algoma Holdings Co., which produces high-end architecturally specified interior wood doors. Last year’s acquisitions of Birchwood Lumber & Veneer Co. and Marshfield Door Systems added $4 million to selling, general and administrative expenses, the company said.