PITTSBURGH - For railroad tie and telephone pole maker Koppers Holdings Inc., the harsh winter had a negative impact, restricting railroad track repairs and utility line installations. As a result, first quarter sales dropped 11%, to $331 million.

Pittsburgh-based Koppers, the largest supplier of railroad cross-ties in North America, also makes commercial wood treatment products and provides utility poles to the electric and telephone industries. Sales for Koppers’ Carbon Materials and Chemicals totaled $202.6 million and sales for Railroad and Utility Products and Services were $128.8 million.

To bolster its revenue, Koppers announced plans in April to purchase Wood Preservation and Railroad Services businesses of Osmose Holdings, Inc. for $460 million.

The Osmose Wood Preservation business manufactures and markets wood preservation chemicals and wood treatment technologies. With operations and sales in North America, Latin America, Europe, and Australasia, it generated $350 million in 2013 revenue. Osmose's Railroad Services, which operates primarily in North America, generated $40 million in revenue last year.

Separately, Koppers’ board elected VP and CFO Leroy M. Ball to a newly created post: Chief Operating Officer. Ball has held the CFO position since coming to Koppers in 2010. Until a new CFO is named, Ball will continue his current responsibilities.Railroad Tie Firm Koppers' Sales Fell 11%; It Will Acquire Osmose

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