Don't knock Masonite Corporation, but feel free to knock on its doors. The door manufacturer is rebuilding itself after undergoing a three-month stint in bankruptcy in 2009. Masonite makes residential entry, interior, and patio doors under the Masonite and Premdor brands. One of the world's largest door companies, it has sold more than 50 million doors in a single year. Its biggest sellers are wooden interior doors, but the company also makes metal and fiberglass doors and door components. The company also sells commercial doors and components. Masonite operates about 60 manufacturing plants in nearly 20 countries and sells its wares via retail and wholesale outlets.
Masonite emerged from bankruptcy in 2009 less than three months after filing for Chapter 11. It had fallen victim to the downturn in the real estate market, which affected builders and manufacturers around the world. In 2008, its sales declined by about a third. The company had also lost its largest customer, The Home Depot, after raising its prices. Masonite closed about 10 plants but declines in sales couldn't be contained.
As part of its bankruptcy restructuring, private equity firm KKR turned its stake in Masonite over to a group of debtors including Centerbridge Partners and Oaktree Capital, writing off its entire investment in the firm. Masonite exited from bankruptcy with new owners and a reduced debt load ($13 million, down from $2.2 billion). Still one of the largest door makers in the world despite losses and factory closure, Masonite is positioned to rebound as the market recovers and has even begun making new acquisitions.
In 2010 Masonite began rebuilding its manufacturing business. It completed the acquisition of Kentucky-based LEDCO, a maker of interior flush doors. The company's product lines and healthy wholesale customer base east of the Rockies fits with Masonite's growth strategy. Also that year Masonite acquired Michigan-based Lifetime Doors, another maker of interior flush doors. It bought Marshfield DoorSystems in 2011. – less