The FDM 300 group of companies has never been carved in stone. Some companies are expanding, some have had lower sales, and a few close their doors each year. The year 2011 was no exception, and some well-known names have closed. Since the FDM 300 is a report for the most recent year, there are a few buyouts and changes that took place in late 2011 that will not be reflected until the 2012 compilation.

 Of special note are three companies that changed their identification in 2011. Bellmont Cabinet Co. is the new name for Pacific Crest Industries, the Sumner, Wash., cabinet manufacturer. In Kansas City, Profile Cabinet & Design is how the former Quality Wood Products is listed. Component producer Alexandria Moulding in Alexandria, Ont., is now listed as Moulure Alexandria Moulding.

 Front and center among new companies listed in 2011 is Swedwood Danville LLC in Ringgold, Va. This is Ikea’s U.S. plant that makes RTA household furniture, tables, shelves and desks. Also new is Foliot Furniture, based in Saint-Jerome, Que. CabinetMakerFDM visited and wrote about their new Las Vegas plant last year. We also visited Mock Woodworking Co. in Zanesville, Ohio, this past year and have included them in the list. Another Canadian furniture producer, Buhler Furniture, is listed for the first time. Returning to the FDM 300 are Concordia Furniture Ltd., Tropitone Furniture, JSI Store Fixtures, and Columbia Showcase and Cabinet Co.

 Company closings in 2011 

 Here’s a summary of FDM 300 closings and consolidations in 2011:
Berkline Benchcraft Holdings LLC, The largest closing, Berkline manufactured upholstered chairs, recliners, sofas and leather upholstered furniture in its Morristown, Tenn., plant. In 2010, it was listed in the FDM 300 with 1,000 employees and an estimated $200 million in annual sales. As recently as 2007 the company had reported sales of $450 million and several thousand employees. A total of 600 employees lost their jobs when the company closed in March 2011. Sun Capital Partners had acquired Berkline in 2007. According to a statement from Berkline, they had been pursuing a “going concern” asset sale, but were unable to find a buyer. A large auction of equipment followed.

 Continental Cabinets. In 2010, RSI Holding Corp. purchased Continental Cabinets in Dallas, Texas. Continental was listed as a separate company last year. For 2011, it is included in RSI’s listing. There have been auctions for equipment in the Dallas operation, along with RSI operations in Coffeyville and Columbus, Kansas. RSI sells large volumes of cabinets to the big box home improvement stores. One-half of RSI was purchased by Canada’s Onex Corp.

 DesignCrafted Bardon Cabinetry Inc. Bardon's showroom in Miramar and cabinet manufacturing plant in El Cajon, Calif., were both closed in May 2011, according to local media reports. An auction was scheduled in November to sell the contents of the showroom and various articles. The company was in the 2010 FDM 300 with 120 employees and estimated $15 million in sales, making custom cabinetry for high-end new construction and remodeling.

Distinctive Designs Furniture Inc. We were not able to contact Toronto-area upholstery maker Distinctive Designs, and phone numbers and web site are inactive. According to an August 2011 report in Furniture Today, Zsemba Apron & Upholstery in Vaughan, Ont., acquired the property rights of Distinctive Designs Furniture, but not the factory or equipment. Zsemba reportedly acquired the rights to the Kroehler, Kroehler Lifespaces, Distinctive Designables and Distinctive Designs brand names, product designs, product catalog and customer information. In recent years Distinctive Designs was listed in the FDM 300 with annual sales of $25 million and 380 employees in plants in Toronto and China. Zsemba, a private label upholstery producer, is being listed in the FDM 300 for the first time, in effect replacing Distinctive Designs.

 Huck Group. Headquartered in Naples, Fla., the firm shut down its store fixture manufacturing operations in early 2011. The company closed its main location in Quincy, Ill., and another plant in Harrison, Ohio. Equipment auctions were held in March. Telephones were disconnected and the web site down during later checks. The company had earlier bought Lincoln, Ill.-based MII in 2008 and had annual sales of $40 million and more than 200 employees in 2009.

Kessler Industries. We contacted the El Paso, Texas, company directly and learned that it had shut down its manufacturing operation and is renting out space to other companies. From earlier interviews, we found out that sales had been affected by imports from China. The company may restart its manufacturing operation in the future. The company made dining room and kitchen furniture and occasional furniture, and had 250 employees and annual sales of $30 million as recently as 2008.

 Luxe Cabinetry LLC. Company closed its cabinet manufacturing operation in Temecula, Calif., and reportedly held an auction in June. Walker Wood Products was acquired by JMH Capital, a Waltham, Mass., private equity firm, and became Luxe Cabinetry., beginning operations in Walker’s Temecula location in December 2008. Luxe Cabinetry had been listed in the FDM 300 as a manufacturer of kitchen and bath cabinets, vanities, desks and bookcases with 100 employees and an estimated annual sales of $15 million.

 McConnell Cabinets Inc. The company closed its cabinet manufacturing operations in City of Industry and El Monte, Calif., in April 2011. About 130 people lost their jobs. A major auction of equipment was held in June 2011. This is another Los Angeles County company that has closed. In 2009, the company employed 170 and had annual sales of about $25 million. The company made stock and custom kitchen and bath cabinets, and custom laminated panel products.

 Moralmar Kitchen Cabinets. The Hialeah, Fla., company reportedly closed in early 2011, with equipment auctioned. Phones were disconnected and web site down. Company sold stock and custom cabinets to south Florida builders and developers, with 160 employees and an estimated $12 million in sales in 2008.

 Robinson and Robinson. This San Diego firm was one of the Southern California-based companies with a large Tijuana plant. They reportedly had stopped shipping leather upholstery products in January 2011. There was no answer to phone calls and emails, and their web site was down in November and December. According to past FDM 300 data, the company employed some 2,000 with annual sales of $150 in 2008. The company made leather furniture, upholstered chairs, motion furniture under the LeatherTrend, SofaTrend, EasyTrend and Richter Designs name.

 WM Coffman Resources LLC. P & F Industries bought Coffman Stair several years earlier and ultimately closed the Marion, Va., stair plant. The company was listed as an importer of wood and iron components a year ago. The closing was confirmed by an interview with the parent company headquarters in Plano, Texas. As recently as the 2008 FDM 300, Coffman employed 230 in three plants in Marion, making millwork, stair parts, curved and spiral stairs and components and mouldings, with annual sales of $40 million.
One other note: Furniture by Thurston reportedly closed in November 2011, according to the Grass Valley (Calif.) Union. Parent company Three Mountain Furniture LLC reportedly filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in San Antonio, Texas. But the company reportedly has reopened to handle several large orders. They have not responded to our email and phone requests for information. If Thurston closes, it will be the fifth California company in the FDM 300 to close within a year.

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