Volume 39, Issue 6, June  2004


Apogee’s 2004 Fiscal Year Impacted by Commercial Construction Slowdown 
“The commercial construction markets we serve did not begin to turn around this past year as had been anticipated,” said Russell Huffer, chairman and chief executive officer of Minneapolis-based Apogee Enterprises in the company’s annual report for fiscal 2004.

The company reported its architectural segment (which includes Harmon, Viracon, Wausau Window and Wall Systems and Linetec) saw an operating loss of $0.6 million on net sales of $535,329 million compared to $32.1 million in earnings the previous year. While the company’s fiscal 2004 earnings of $411.4 million were down 10 percent, Huffer said it continued to outperform the non-residential construction market.

“Market conditions led to lower volume, project delays and pricing pressures,” said Huffer in the report. “ … Margins in our glass installation business were impacted by isolated project management issues, and we did not anticipate the severity of the downturn [nor] reduce segment costs quickly enough.”

However, Huffer reported that sales of “higher value-added” products, such as hurricane-resistant and protective glazing products were up.

And, while Apogee companies have been involved in a number of large, complex projects, including the World Trade Center Tower 7 and Taipei 101 in Taiwan, Huffer said their current mix includes “a greater percentage of lower-margin institutional, education and other smaller projects.”

Huffer also said in the report that Apogee is considering entering into the storefronts and entrances market “to allow us to grow our window and curtainwall sales by offering a full product line from a single source.”

Construction Guidelines Now Available Online
Available for the first time online, the Guidelines for a Successful Construction Project is a digital collection of guidelines and forms designed to provide contractors with insights on safety, cooperation and coordination among different parties at all stages of construction. The document was jointly developed and 
produced by the American Subcontractors Association, the Associated General Contractors of America and the Associated Specialty Contractors. The purpose of the document is to help contractors, subcontractors and specialty trade contractors complete projects as specified, on time and on budget. The guidelines can be found at www.constructionguidelines.org.

Northern California Glass Management Association Formed
A new organization, the Northern California Glass Management Association (NCGMA), has been constructed to serve the area’s glazing industry. The NCGMA membership consists of glass management companies that employ signatory glaziers who are members of IUPAT District Council 16. The association’s office opened March 15 in Emeryville, Calif.

Serving as the association’s executive director is Robert S. Adams. He has more than 20 years of experience in association management and conflict resolution, and has served on the board of trustees for the American Arbitration Association.

“We intend to provide contract negotiations, labor relations, organization development, contract administration, training seminars, become instrumental in setting regulatory standards for the glazing industry, produce safety videos and provide networking arenas all in an effort to enhance productivity and profitability for our commercial and industrial glazing contractor members in Northern California,” stated a press release issued by the association.


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