Georgia Gulf Corp. reported today the operating loss in its building products segment more than quadrupled in the fourth quarter to $6.1 million from a $1.5 million loss in the year-earlier period. The Atlanta-based company cited increased raw material costs as the reason for the deeper operating loss.

The segment posted net sales of $174.4 million for the quarter vs. $171 million in 2009's October-December period. For all 2010, the segment swung to an operating profit of $14.5 million from the $26.7 million loss recorded the year before. The 2009 losses were caused in part by $4.3 million in restructuring costs and another $21.6 in asset impairment charges. Net sales for the year rose 9% to $793.6 million.

"Our building products business reported its second straight year of strong results, generating 33% more adjusted EBITDA [earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization] in 2010 than 2009 on just a 4% increase in sales volume,” said president and CEO Paul Carrico. The company's news release didn't report EBITDA figures.

The company as a whole reported a net income of $15.1 million for the quarter, a big move out of the red when the company posted a net loss of $124.7 million during fourth quarter 2009. For the year, Georgia Gulf announced a net income of $42.7 million, a 67% decrease from 2009's $131.1 million in net income.

Operating income company-wide for the quarter swung to a $33.6 million from an $18.6 million operating loss.

The company also grew over the past week as it acquired siding producer Exterior Portfolio by Crane for approximately $72 million. The move was made to further expand Georgia Gulf's presence in the U.S.