February 2021
What's happening and what matters in construction supply, from Webb Analytics President Craig Webb.
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A 'Tsunami of Freight' Indicates You'll Suffer Supply-Chain Holdups Well Into Spring
Traffic jams at America's ports, railroad terminals, and trucking centers all indicate that the supply headaches you suffered last year are likely to continue until deep into spring. Products from China that you sell are most at risk, as the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are so busy 30 ships currently are stuck in the harbor, waiting to dock. But goods produced in North America also are having issues that won't go away soon. Sky-high lumber prices and continued adjustments due to Covid just aggravate the pain. More
Filings Show What Beacon Shed, FBM Gained with Sale of Interior Products Stores
Thanks to new owner American Securities LLC, drywall and steel studs specialist Foundation Building Materials has expanded its network by roughly 50% through the acquisition of Beacon's interior products facilities. Now comes the challenge of integrating roughly 80 facilities that have produced modest returns into a company that has had its own Covid-related challenges.

The pandemic has been tough on companies like FBM and Beacon's interior products group. Interest in commercial and multifamily construction has withered since last summer, and the twin trends of working from home and moving to detached suburban houses appears likely to keep depressing commercial and multifamily investment. Both Beacon's interior products stores and FBM as a whole have seen revenue decline over the past year. In addition, Beacon slashed by half the goodwill value of those interior products units. More
Mail Service Changes Threaten Your Cash Flow
Just 38% of the nation's mail was delivered on time at the end of 2020, The Washington Post reports. Soon, the low point could be the norm. The Post cites plans to change standards on first-class mail: instead of a goal of delivering local mail in two days, the goal would be for arrival in three to five days. This takes "the check is in the mail" excuse to new heights. Is it time for you to start billing electronically?

85 People at 56 LBM Firms Receive New Jobs, Promotions
The past month has seen a slew of people move into VP and higher positions in LBM. Among them: Ryan Nelson (right), now EVP and CFO at SRS Distribution; Jeff Ferreira, EVP at Rosen Materials, a unit of US LBM; Bethany Cypher, now a VP at 84 Lumber; and Dan Turner, a VP at Lansing Building Products. More
CEOs: It's Time to Brag a Little. Take Your Place on the Construction Supply 150 Top Dealers List
For lots of lumberyards and speciality dealers nationwide, 2020 was a record sales year. That makes this a great time to show how you did by taking part in The Construction Supply 150 report on America's biggest building material suppliers. Powered by a Webb Analytics survey and lots of research, the CS150 will list the top 150 firms selling building materials. But it will go far beyond that, breaking down the numbers to show the size and scale of LBM's subsegments and revealing important metrics that show how the industry is performing. Learn more. (Are a vendor? The consider sponsoring the report.)
Just six weeks into 2021 and we've already seen 55 locations affected by openings, closures, or deals. The biggest was SRS Distribution's purchase of J B Wholesale, which has 11 yards in Southern California. Meanwhile, one $23.5mln company is using the Internet to promote its potential sale. Here's my report on what's been happening.
Which dealer acquired the most yards in 2020? Which yard was sold, then sold again within a few days? We've compiled all the significant openings, closures, mergers and acquisitions in this Webb Analytics 2020 LBM Deals Report. Download it for free.
AWC's Chief Sees Wood as a Solution
to Problems Cited in Biden's Climate Initiatives
Jackson Morrill (right) has reason to smile. The president and CEO of the American Wood Council has watched in recent weeks as the Biden Administration issued executive orders and generally showed support for addressing climate problems that Morrill believes can be reduced in part through more use of wood.

Morrill, an association exec and environmental lawyer who took over the AWC last Sept. 1, plans to promote mass timber and other initiatives through a combination of codes and standards advocacy, education, and lobbying on both the federal and local levels. More
Build Better Teams With This Expert Advice
Expect all the recent M&A deals to produce store consolidations as well as disgruntled employees. Some of them might make great candidates for your operation. But how can you find them? In this column for Webb Analytics, James Aiken offers this step-by-step guide for using LinkedIn to attract potential talent. More
Every LBM dealer has been shaken by Covid, but industry veteran Mark Barnard says only the more forward-thinking dealers are adapting to the changes wrought by the pandemic. His Webb Analytics column lists several ways that construction supply companies are restructuring their ops with a different breed of exec. More
Worth Reading ...
Listen to this: Credit overlord Thea Dudley and remodeling operations guru Judith Miller show you how to teach contractors to collect debts better so they'll pay you faster. This Jan. 26 video webinar with me was sponsored by Epicor Software. Hear it here
Why Rodney Potter May Be LBM's G.O.A.T. GM
Imagine working 66 years at the same location for six different lumberyard companies. Imagine being so respected and loved that dozens of people rate you as the greatest LBM manager they've ever met. That was Rodney Potter, GM at the Bradenton, FL, lumberyard now operated by Builders FirstSource. He died Jan. 31 at age 84. One of my favorite quotes in ProSales ever came from Andy Carlo's interview with Potter in 2009: "I have four phones on my desk. I can talk on two phones and service a standing customer at the same time. I purchase materials, I sell, and I work in credit. I approve all refunds ... I audit every sale every day ... I work in purchasing ... I correspond with upper management ... I prepare take-offs. I lock up at night; I am the last one to leave." Hundreds of LBM people are sorry to see him go. Learn more about Mr. Potter on this BFS-produced video.
Need LBM Research? Data? A Webinar Speaker?
If you want to run a better LBM company, Webb Analytics can help.

Webb Analytics was created by Craig Webb, who for 12 years served as editor-in-chief of ProSales, the nation's most-honored publication for construction supply executives. Webb Analytics alerts dealers to trends, threats, and opportunities from around the globe to help LBM insiders and investors make better decisions. He does it through personal (and online) visits, custom research, data, strategic consulting, speeches, roundtables, board work, and business development services.

Prior to joining ProSales, Webb worked as an editor and reporter at The Wall Street Journal in Brussels and New York. He served as chief economics reporter for United Press International, covered Congress and the White House for McGraw-Hill, was trade editor at the Journal of Commerce, and worked for other organizations in newsrooms from Indiana to Italy.

Contact him at cwebb@webb-analytics.com or by phone at 202.374.2068.

Webb Analytics LLC | 202.374.2068 | cwebb@webb-analytics.com
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