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Challenges and Opportunities
Given its island locale, HPM Building Supply has faced challenges foreign to many LBM dealers on the U.S. Mainland. Sometimes, logistics can even be the least of its challenges.

HPM Supply - LogisticsFor example, even after two tsunamis destroyed portions of the company in 1946 and 1960, the company continued to build and grow. What was once Hawaii Planing Mill, Ltd., founded in 1921 by local contractors Kametaro Fujimoto and Sanzo Kawasaki as a lumber mill, has grown to a seven-location business on Oahu, Kauai and Hawaii Island. As a fifth-generation family operation, Mike Fujimoto became president and CEO of HPM Building Supply in 1992, following his father’s retirement after 38 years with the company.

Shortly after, the company forged its partnership with Do it Best Corp, and now Jason Fujimoto, COO, is preparing to transition into his father’s role in the near future.

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While the company aims to provide unmatched selection, service and support for its customers, HPM’s reputation is also credited in part to its employee stock ownership plan (ESOP).

“We thought it was very important for our employees—who we feel truly make HPM what it is today,” says Mike. “Our success is really attributed to our employees. For that reason, we felt the employees needed to share the benefits of ownership. We began an ESOP in 1977, only three years after it became legal, and in 2006 we became a 100% ESOP-owned company.”

HPM Building Supply - metal-roofingIn recent years, HPM Building Supply has focused on providing customers with a comprehensive suite of services. Its “Better Builder Directory” is designed to unite the best area contractors with customers who recognize the value of investing in a licensed professional. Along with the company’s kitchen and bath design consultation and home planning
and drafting, HPM Building Supply provides builders and contractors with performance bonds at no extra cost for qualifying contractors. In addition, HPM Building Supply has designed and manufactured trusses for more than 30 years, as well as providing engineered lumber and custom metal roofing products.

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Jason adds, “When you look at our product mix, our SKU assortment and all of the business segments that we participate in, we are very diverse and can provide a lot of solutions to our core customers.”

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