Building products giant CertainTeed Corp. of Valley Forge, Pa., has entered a distribution agreement with New London, N.C.-based Fiber Composites LLC a deal that will give CertainTeed a cellular PVC decking product and augment Fiber Composites' capacity utilization, as well as enhancing its distribution.
Fiber Composites will supply CertainTeed with EverNew LT decking, based on the technology used in Fiber Composites' Sensibuilt-brand decking.
The deal gives CertainTeed its first premium vinyl deck board since the company discontinued its Boardwalk-brand, PVC-wood composite deck and railing material in 2007.
The agreement will open up complementary channels of distribution and will not cannibalize sales, said Chris Beyer, Fiber Composites' vice president of marketing, in a July 30 telephone interview.
[CertainTeed brings] us market opportunities that we don't currently have, but in our view will not be conflicting with our current two-step model, he said.
CertainTeed officials would not comment on the agreement. The company's distribution is geared primarily toward the one-step channel.
The deal makes sense for both parties though the upside potential is limited said Steve Van Kouteren, a principal with Principia Partners, a building products consulting firm in Exton, Pa.
Although [CertainTeed has] a lot of distribution, it's the one-step side of the business, and traditionally, that has not been the biggest outlet for composite deck and railing, Van Kouteren said.
CertainTeed becomes part of a growing trend of companies who are being supplied cellular PVC decking from a third party, including Joplin, Mo.-based Tamko Building Products; Winchester Va.-based Trex Co. Inc.; and Greer, S.C.-based Guardian Building Products.
Trex officials recently reported that the company's average capacity utilization for the first half of 2009 was about 30 percent.
So Fiber Composites now has a new customer to supply board for, Van Kouteren said. Hey that helps.
Like Sensibuilt, EverNew LT decking will incorporate Luminite surface technology that's designed to increase color fastness and scratch resistance.
It also features the Sensibuilt Deck Pilot, a tool installers use to help guide screws into deck boards at an angle, keeping the screws hidden and allowing for faster installation than screwing directly through the deck boards.
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