Columbia Forest sells Cabinotch back to creator Phillip Crabtree
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Columbia Forest Products has sold its Cabinotch Division to Cabaxis Inc, an affiliate of Phillip Crabtree, the originator and creator of the award-winning cabinet box system. Details of the sale were not revealed.
Greg Pray, Columbia’s President and CEO, said that “the persistence of unfairly-traded imports – both cabinetry and hardwood plywood products – has impacted a wide spectrum of wood industry markets.  We felt that the Cabinotch operation was an excellent candidate for a different ownership model given our new strategic plan, and it will be in great hands with Crabtree’s team.” Cabinotch was acquired by Columbia back in 2012.
“We have invested in robotic technology in our facilities and are excited to introduce new construction methods and cost saving materials in 2020," says Crabtree. "Outsourcing is the most effective way to build and maintain a healthy woodworking business and Cabinotch is making that process easier and more cost effective than ever,” said Crabtree.
The Cabinotch cabinet box system, which involves a patented interlocking joint, helps shops reduce costs and improve productivity, says the company. Cabinotch provides a custom-sized "cabinet chassis" - including the face frame, sides, backs, bottoms, tops and shelves - that cabinet shops can finish and assemble themselves. Box parts are customizable to within 1000th of an inch.
Components can be ordered online or via a completed custom design utilizing partner design software, and are shipped within 5-7 working days of order placement.
Pray added that “Columbia Forest Products is entering 2020 with its eye on executing a new, focused strategic plan that will continue to deliver value and innovation to its customers through its employee-owners.  Our experience with the Cabinotch model has revealed how much pressure the North American cabinet producer is under to save time and money, while delivering an excellent finished product to the final consumer.
“We will continue to support the cabinetmaking market – and are confident that the Cabinotch system will continue to be a terrific option for many of them.”
An employee-owned company founded in 1957, Columbia Forest Products manufacturers decorative hardwood plywood and veneer.

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Robert Dalheim

Robert Dalheim is an editor at the Woodworking Network. Along with publishing online news articles, he writes feature stories for the FDMC print publication. He can be reached at [email protected].