Atlanta — LBM Advantage members, mills and manufacturers descended on Atlanta last week for their Annual Fall Conference. The Omni Atlanta Hotel was the host venue, which houses CNN studio headquarters, and is neighbor to the College Football Hall of Fame and Georgia Aquarium. Holding the Fall Conference at this central hub accommodated additional members from Advantage’s emerging Southern and Western regions.
A NextGen meeting at Georgia-Pacific’s corporate headquarters benefitted members of Advantage’s new leadership program. Attendees learned the life cycle of OSB, from timber harvest to shipment. Back at the Conference, a kickoff cocktail party followed with lively conversation about surviving a rollercoaster year of challenges. From trucking shortages to record level pricing, 2018 was not for the faint of heart.
Several seminars were offered, including an overview of Rayonier Advanced Materials from CEO Paul Boynton, as well as a mill perspective on the shift to Southern yellow pine by more Northern markets, and the impact of the political climate on our industry. Specialized user group meetings were also held. New members to the co-op, whether through merger or new signing, learned more about their cooperative and took advantage of everything the Fall Conference had to offer.
The main thrust of the Fall Conference is to provide a foundation for members to plan their next year’s purchasing strategy in conjunction with their traders and preferred mills. Contracts and commitments are at the forefront. New this year was the inclusion of select building products manufacturers which allowed dealers to plan for 2019 across multiple product categories.