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North American Market Study on Masonry Veneer Products

The North American market for masonry veneer in residential and commercial applications reached over 160 million square feet valued at nearly $700 million in 2010.

Principia Partners’ 2nd multi-client study on the subject titled MASONRY VENEER 2010 shows better times ahead for this important building products category over the next few years. The residential market for masonry veneer will be the primary driver of new growth between 2010 and 2012, contributing over $150 million in new demand.

Masonry veneer including manufactured stone, thin veneer stone, thin brick and masonry panels is group of cladding products used for high architectural styling to simulate stone or brick appearance at a installed cost of 50 to 60% that of full dimensional masonry. The shortage of skilled masons has led even higher installed costs for full dimensional masonry widening the spread from masonry veneer. Masonry veneer products are highly versatile and widely used in facades, foundation facings, archways, courtyards, entrance pillars as well as interior applications such as accent walls, chimneys, mantels and more.

Ken Jacobson, Partner at Principia Partners, says “Property owners are increasingly using masonry veneer products because they are significantly more affordable than natural stone and full dimensional brick. The growth in demand for masonry veneer products will be strongest in the residential new construction as the market rebounds. Moreover, manufacturers and suppliers are developing business with large home builders, contractors and architects to promote masonry veneer products in the residential market.”

Mr. Jacobson continues, “According to our extensive research, property owners continue to seek products that are aesthetically pleasing, offer a wide range of design options in color, form and texture, and that can be easily installed. Masonry veneer products install easier than full-dimension masonry. More product can be moved and installed per man hour. Due to masonry veneer’ lower volume and weight, more product can be shipped per truckload than traditional masonry as with no load-bearing foundations required, thin masonry veneers are easier and less expensive to install than their full-dimension equivalents.”

Masonry veneer product supply is fragmented with over 150 suppliers dotting the North American market. Participants include large multinational building products companies like Headwaters and Owens Corning, traditional siding companies like PlyGem and Crane and full dimensional masonry suppliers like Boral Bricks and Buechel Stone. The practical limits on shipping distances and distribution make effective distribution critical to long-term success. Only a few companies have been able to achieve a truly national footprint. Most recently, Owens Corning, an industry leader, announced the sale of its Masonry Products business to Boral Bricks. Already a major distributor for Owens Corning, Boral will be adding manufactured stone to its own thin brick product line.


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