Volume 47, Issue 9 - September 2012


Southern Aluminum Finishing Announces Succession Plan
Southern Aluminum Finishing Co. Inc. (SAF) president John McClatchey retired from his role on September 1. He has held the role of president since 1988 and will continue to serve on the company’s board of directors, in addition to remaining on as chief financial officer for at least two years.

His brothers, James and Penn McClatchey, have been named co-CEOs of the Atlanta-based company. James McClatchey, 62, will be responsible for sales, information technology and finance, while Penn McClatchey, 50, will be in charge of operations, engineering and marketing. James McClatchey joined SAF in 1973, and Penn McClatchey joined SAF in 1986. The McClatcheys’ father, Marvin, founded the company in 1946.

“This is an ideal time for a CEO transition, “ says John McClatchey. “The company is in very good shape strategically and financially. The management team at SAF is second to none and ready to capitalize on the many opportunities ahead. I have great confidence in Penn and James and their ability to lead SAF to the next level of success. They are surrounded by a very strong group of talented people at all levels of the organization.”

Penn McClatchey adds, “I look forward to working closely with James to finish out 2012 in strong fashion, and I’m excited about leading SAF in 2013 and into the future.”

James McClatchey agrees. “SAF has thrived despite a harsh building products market during the last four years,” he says. “Our success has always been based on a model of shared decision making.”

Environamics Prevails in Trainor Auction
The U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois recently issued an order authorizing the sale of certain of Trainor Glass’ modular wall assets to Charlotte, N.C.-based Environamics Inc. An auction was held on August 17, but, according to court documents, no other bids besides that of Environamics were received.

“The sale of the purchased assets to Environamics is an exercise of the debtor’s sound business judgment and is in the best interests of the debtor, its estate and its creditors,” wrote the court.

The asset sale includes all equipment located at Trainor’s modular wall facility in Farmers Branch, Texas, all inventory, packaging and other personal property located at the facility, “the goodwill of the Trainor Modular Business,” the trade name “Trainor Modular Walls,” [and] a copy of all computer files related to completed projects and projects in progress at Trainor Modular Wall business at the time the business ceased operations in February 2012. According to the order, the sale does exclude “certain software from the purchased assets,” though details have not been provided as to what this entails.

Industry Displays Optimism at AAMA Summer Conference
The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) recently held its summer conference in Oak Brook, Ill., where keynote speaker Michael Collins discussed the current and future state of the industry. “A lot of companies I talk to are telling me they are up 15 to 20 percent, and I expect that [percent] to be higher in the next few years,” said Collins, a regular columnist/blogger for USGlass’ sister publication, Door and Window Manufacturer (DWM) magazine.

The commercial market is seeing positive trends in the form of power and energy construction, as well as strong forecasts for building in the manufacturing sector, according to Collins. However, he said many new construction projects that have been approved are being delayed due to lack of financing available to developers.

According to Collins, industry plant expansions were closely balanced by plant closures during the same period. Industry bankruptcies and business closures dropped substantially in 2008 through 2010, although they inched up again in 2011. Collins said he considers it a positive sign that many companies are being purchased out of bankruptcy rather than being liquidated.

On the residential side, Collins said the housing market still is up against some hurdles.

“[Future] homeowners still have difficulty obtaining mortgages,” he said, which causes “an excess of homes for sale.”

Still, Collins is optimistic. “We made it through the storm,” he said. “It’s now time to harvest the benefits of surviving a really tough downturn.”

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