Are things getting better for "independents" in the window and door business?

John G. Swanson
November 14, 2007

Greg Brooks, a consultant to the lumber and building materials field, suggested at the recent AMD convention and exhibition that things are looking up for “independents.” Economies of scale have not added up for big companies to an advantage, he says, pointing to, among other things, the fact that in most markets, locals are effectively competing with Home Depot on price.

Brooks also suggests independents can do well with younger buyers. Gen X’ers and Gen Y’ers in particular don’t share older buyers’ faith in big companies. “They’re more confident with somebody they can look in the eye.”

We’ve certainly seen and heard enough about consolidation and the “big” getting bigger in recent years, but is it over? Or are we just seeing a respite? That’s our poll question of the week, and of course, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic. Are you an independent—be it dealer, distributor or manufacturer—successfully taking on the big guys? Email me and tell me about it.

For poll results and industry feedback about this topic, click to the next page, and read Page 2 of “The Talk...”