Specializing in floors, walls, and roofs, Louisiana-Pacific (LP) might just have you surrounded. The building materials company makes specialized wood products such as oriented strand board (a lower-cost version of plywood), siding, and laminated lumber and related products. Its offerings are used in new home and manufactured housing construction, as well as repair and remodeling, and for sheds and other outdoor structures. The company sells its products to distributors, dealers, professional lumberyards, and retail home centers, including
LP's three largest reporting segments serve the North American market. Oriented strand board (OSB), which accounts for about 45% of sales, makes and distributes OSB panels used similarly to plywood for structural paneling. Siding products and related accessories represent about 35%, while engineered wood products (laminated veneer and strand lumber) used for headers, beams, and other extra-strength applications contribute nearly 15%.
The company's South America segment, which manufactures and distributes OSB and siding products across that continent and in select export markets, accounts for about 5% of sales.
Nashville, Tennessee-based LP operates about 20 production facilities in the US and Canada. It also owns two facilities in Chile, and one in Brazil. The US is LP's largest market, accounting for about 70% of its sales. Canada is second with a quarter of sales.
Sales and Marketing
LP markets its products to a variety of customers. Its primary customer segments include local, regional, and state wholesale distributors; two-step distributors, which supply smaller contractors and retailers; building materials dealers; retail home centers serving professional builders and remodelers, as well as DIY customers; and makers of sheds and other prefabricated structures.
The company's top 10 customers account for some 40% of sales.
Although LP's revenue has generally risen since the bottom of the Great Recession in 2009, the company has seen uneven performance in recent years. In 2016, however, revenue was up a solid 18% to $2.2 billion. All segments grew that year, but results were primarily driven by a 27% jump in sales from the OSB segment on improved North American pricing. Increased demand in the siding segment also contributed to overall revenue growth. The South America segment has struggled over the past few years as Chile and Brazil continue to deal with stagnant economies.
After two years in the red, LP's net income entered positive territory in 2016, hitting nearly $150 million. In addition to the improvement in revenue, net income was impacted by the company's tight control of costs. Following the same trajectory as revenue and net income, cash from operations increased significantly, jumping to $342 million from $29 million the prior year.
LP has certainly benefited from increased new home construction since the economic downturn of the late 2000s; that recovery, however, is still fickle with an improvement of less than 5% in 2016.
To combat over-reliance on that measure, the company is focused on expanding its siding business, which serves not just new residential home construction, but the repair and remodel markets, as well as shed makers and other retail markets. In 2016 it converted the Swan Valley mill in Manitoba, Canada, from a strand board facility to a siding facility, which helped increase production that year of LP SmartSide by 16%. LP also acquired other facilities that year (in Quebec and Minnesota) for future siding capacity.
Another key element in reducing LP's revenue mix is continued investment in South America. Although the region's economy has struggled in the past few years, the company sees great opportunity to capitalize on growing demand in the market for affordable housing. LP is building a third mill in Chile.
Mergers and Acquisitions
In mid-2017 LP agreed to purchase Minnesota-based International Barrier Technology, which makes fire retardant coating, for some $22 million. The company views the deal as a way to accelerate new market growth.
414 UNION ST STE 2000
Nashville, TN 37219-1711
Phone: 1 (615) 986-5600
Employer Type: Publicly Owned
Stock Symbol: LPX
Stock Exchange: , NYSE
EVP and CFO: Sallie B. Bailey
Chairman: E. Gary Cook
CEO: W. Bradley Southern
Employees (This Location): 150
Employees (All Locations): 4,900
New Limerick, ME
Two Harbors, MN
North Wilkesboro, NC
Dawson Creek, Canada
Fort St. John, Canada
Swan River, Canada