June 2007 Table of Contents

Moving On Moving On

Officials in Loomis, Calif., don't want to lose Homewood Lumber, whose taxes account for about 9% of that town's annual general fund. So they support Homewood's plan to relocate its yard--at a cost to the dealer of between $5 million and $6 million--to a nearby 8.8-acre site on which this pro dealer would construct 38,800 square feet of covered space that includes a door shop, a warehouse, and Homewood's offices. Less enthusiastic, though, are some local homeowners who don't want to live near a lumberyard. Read more

The Value Link

For as long as there's been a supply chain that connects those who make products with those who use them, there have been factions within the home-improvement and home-building sectors that have regarded two-step distributors as one link too many. Weyerhaeuser's recent decision to sell all 16 of its distribution centers in Canada to a Los Angeles?based private equity firm, and to seek buyers for 10 of its 50 DCs in the U.S., gave industry watchers another reason to wonder if the conventional two-step model--when all that mattered was getting Product A to End User Z quickly and cheaply--was losing traction in a consolidating market where major dealers had grown large enough to take over functions they once delegated to distributors, from inventory management to rapid delivery. Read more

Well Stocked

The strategies for improving inventory management vary widely, but the need for them remains the same: running your business better. Read more

Open Forum

When Ricci Lumber launched a new Web site four years ago, it asked customers what they wanted. Feedback the Portsmouth, N.H.-based dealer received pointed to "having something better than e-mail," according to Pat Moretti, Ricci's general manager. Read more

Tech Trends Tech Trends

Brian King, president of Construction Supply in Farmington, N.M., has put a range of bar code--scanning technology to use at his three-yard building material operation over the years. While bar-coding has always helped ensure the accuracy of $13 million Construction Supply's point-of-sale (POS) transactions, like any technology King has sometimes had to wrestle with it to make it work. Read more

Orange Goes Green Orange Goes Green

Anyone still doubting whether the green movement has staying power should note the sheer magnitude of The Home Depot's announcement in April launching a green products branding program. Not only must the investment in marketing, labeling, displays, and education be astronomical, the retailer says it expects revenue from Eco Options?branded products to total $1 billion to $2.8 billion in its first year. That's up to 3% of the company's sales, based on last year's figures. Read more

Eco Chambers Eco Chambers

Regional LBM associations are scrambling to ensure that a flurry of well-intentioned bills in legislatures across the country promoting green construction don't end up cramping the movement--or dealers' potential sales. Read more

Yard Notables: June 2007

Editor's Product Pick / Housing Market Rebound? / Deals...and More Read more

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