Sales rise, losses narrow at BFS

Builders FirstSource, the Dallas-based pro dealer, posted net sales of $219.4 million for its first fiscal quarter of 2012, a 34.7% hike over sales of $162.8 million in the same quarter of 2011. The increase was primarily due to increased sales volume as commodity prices for lumber and lumber sheet goods in the quarter were, on average, comparable to the same period a year ago, the company said. The increased sales volume was achieved across all product categories, and Builders FirstSource reported that it “continued to expand our customer base while increasing our sales to existing customers.” 

The LBM chain posted a net loss of $19.1 million for its first fiscal quarter, which ended March 31, 2012. This compares to a net loss of $21.2 million a year ago.

“We have continued to manage our operating expenses with a key focus on conserving liquidity,” the company said in its financial filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). “Our selling, general and administrative expenses, as a percentage of sales, decreased 5.5% in the quarter compared to the same period a year ago. We have made significant changes to our business during the downturn that have improved our operating efficiency and allowed us to better leverage our operating costs against changes in sales. The continued execution of our cost containment strategies along with our improved operating results contributed to us ending the quarter with $94.6 million of liquidity, which includes $129.6 million of cash reduced by the $35.0 million minimum cash requirement in our term loan. 

“We still believe that the long-term outlook for the housing industry is positive due to growth in the underlying demographics. We believe we are well-positioned to take advantage of any construction activity in our markets and will continue to increase our market share. We will continue to focus on working capital by closely monitoring the credit exposure of our customers and by working with our vendors to improve our payment terms and pricing on our products. We will also continue to work diligently to achieve the appropriate balance of short-term cost reductions while maintaining the expertise to grow the business when market conditions improve. We want to create long-term shareholder value and avoid taking steps that will limit our ability to compete,” the SEC filing said.