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Page 36 of 47 PalletCentral • November-December 2014 37 Ray Gutierrez, President - CEO Commercial Lumber and Pallet Company, Inc. City of Industry, California W e are looking upon 2015 to have many challenges and opportunities. The challenges, in our estimate, will continue to be the sourcing of raw material, the acquisition of good dependable labor, and the rising costs of insurance, energy and overall maintenance expenses. Facing these challenges indicates that we are anticipating growth in 2015 and how we plan to address that growth, thus the opportunities. We have plans to expand our facility in Beaumont, California to create efficiencies and reduce lead times. Of course this will also require purchasing some equipment to enhance our versatility at this location, but it also challenges us to look at increasing efficiencies within our existing operation. In our simple opinion, this is all doable, but the sourcing of labor has proved extremely difficult in 2014 and we don't see that changing in 2015. Therefore, although our growth is needed for us to succeed in our goals, we are limited by the lack of the existing labor pool. So for the first time since our inception, our priority is that of hiring people until we achieve the amount of employees needed to expand, grow and reduce our lead times. Lastly, we plan to continue with our quest to enhance our website, and continue to pursue those areas that we feel make us "stand out" beyond our competitors, such as our Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) certification. We want to let our customers know that we are as dedicated to sustaining our environment as they are, and to get the word out loud and clear that we are 100% recyclable, and wood is the only option when it comes to pallets and the role they play in sustainability. This will take the effort of all of our employees, and not just management, to spread the word. Our wish is to be successful in all our challenges and opportunities above, and of course for the health and happiness of all the family of employees at Commercial Lumber and Pallet Company. Rick Autey, Sales General Manager Viking Engineering & Development Inc. Minneapolis, Minnesota W ith 2014 coming to a close and 2015 quickly approaching, we are predicting a steady year of increased business once again. The recent recession has had some lasting effects that everyone in the industry is still trying to shake. Even with those still around, we have seen constant pursuit of pallet manufacturing machinery. Along with pallet equipment, we have started to see other capital machinery expenditures. People around the country are trending toward incorporating sawing lines into their operations. We believe this is because of some difficulty finding quality wood at a reasonable price. As the housing market starts to grow again, it makes high-grade lumber harder to obtain. Companies are trying to mitigate those added costs by installing high-tech saw lines and producing their own lumber. Due to this, much of their capital equipment expenditures are prioritized toward sawing equipment at this time. One thing companies are looking for in their sawing and other capital equipment, such as pallet machinery, is utilization of new technology. Technology is one of the largest trends we Forecasts & Wishes

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