AMERICAN Woodmark Corp., a West Virginia-based cabinetry company, has announced that it is closing its lumber plant in Perry County as a result of the nation’s prolonged housing industry slump.
The shutdown will eliminate 156 Kentucky jobs.
American Woodmark manufactures and distributes kitchen cabinets and vanities for the remodeling and new home construction markets. Its products are sold on a national basis directly to home centers, major builders and through a network of independent distributors. The company presently operates 11 manufacturing facilities and nine service centers across the country.
“The housing sector remains mired in a slump driven by low consumer confidence,” said American Woodmark Chairman and CEO Kent Guichard, noting that the depth and duration of the current housing cycle has been extreme. “The last four years have been the worst four years in new home construction levels since 1959. In the near term, we believe the ongoing uncertainty surrounding government finances, persistent unemployment and restrictive credit will continue to suppress consumer confidence and demand for discretionary big ticket items, particularly those related to home purchase and home improvement.”
Guichard noted that the company currently has excess capacity in its lumber and dimension operations and that “the Hazard facility was selected for closure due to a variety of factors, including access to lumber supply, flexibility and logistics costs.”
The company is also closing a plant in West Virginia and is selling a cabinet-assembly plant in Oklahoma that has been idled since 2009.