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Crescent 10% increase

Discussion in 'Picture Framing Business Issues' started by Kirstie, Oct 11, 2010.

  1. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    In cast you missed this. We received this from our LJ rep:

    As of Monday, October 11th, Crescent has passed on an industry-wide increase on their matboard products. Larson-Juhl will be updating its pricing on Crescent products effective 10/11. Here is a summary of the increases by category.

    Rag Mats 10% increase
    Select 10% increase
    Accents 12% increase
    Moorman 8% increase
    Intl Whitecore 10% increase
    Paper 8% increase
    Gatorfoam 7% increase
     
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  2. Paul N

    Paul N In Corner

    Framers better look at their cost in their POS systems.....those systems don't automatically adjust the prices.
     
  3. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I ordered around 400 sheets last week to beat the price increase and avoid future shortages due to the strike. My plan was to inventory my mat board and order another 500 or so Sunday but had too much framing that needed to be done to do it. I still have a couple hundred sheets in the store that have not been put into the rack so it would have taken half a day to put together an order.

    The nice thing about being 100% package priced is it only takes a minute to raise the prices on each size and print the new price list.
     
  4. Mike Labbe

    Mike Labbe Member, Former moderator team volunteer

    The LS legacy version used to employ a fixed mat classes pricing method but that was redone several years ago. I think everyone has since switched to the new method with auto adjusting costs. TV version has only the auto method avail.

    The auto cost updates should be in one of two updates this week, providing the vendor transmitted them.

    Mike
    Sent from Motorola Droid
     
  5. Rick Bergeron - CPF

    Rick Bergeron - CPF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    SpecialtySoft does not automatically update matboard pricing on a matboard update.

    It is up to the user to manually update each pricegroup.
     
  6. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Received my mat board order today with 46 out of stocks. I hope the vendors start seeing some deliveries.
     
  7. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    Frame Ready grabs our list prices on LJ mat board from LJ so when we update LJ, Artique is updated--almost. We have our mat prices set up with a multiplier on a price code table and a set price added to each size category. We must manually change the set price. This is just the way we have FR set up. Others may use it differently as there are so many options.

    Frame Ready also grabs prices directly from Bainbridge, Crescent, Rising, etc, and the above procedure is the same. Don't most programs allow the user to add compaines such as Crescent, Bainbridge, etc?
     
  8. Rick Bergeron - CPF

    Rick Bergeron - CPF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    SpecialtySoft actually updates the cost prices but does not recalculate the selling prices. The user must visit each matboard group and manually click the "recalc" button after verifying that the cost is the correct price in what seems to be nearly 100 groups.
     
  9. GhostFramer

    GhostFramer MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    I just got an email about this from my LJ rep today. I dont use many cresent mats as it is so not that big of a deal to me. Looks like its time to adjust some prices in the system though. Hoping that other companies dont follow with increases too!
     
  10. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Update on the strike situation. They are shipping absolutely nothing to anyone. Checked with my supplier and they had talked to 2 of the 3 largest Crescent distributors in the country. None of them are getting anything other than stories that paint rosey pictures. Zp, Zilch, Nada. Merry Christmas picture framing industry.
     
  11. Mike Labbe

    Mike Labbe Member, Former moderator team volunteer

    Because there are so many threads about Crescent's periodic increase and labor dispute, and keeping hype to a minimum, I'm reposting what they had to say about it.

    Mike

     
  12. SusieQ

    SusieQ CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    I'm a distributor and I received 2 skids yesterday. It took 2 weeks from the day that I ordered.
     
  13. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    SusieQ please repost this in the other Crescent thread. I am glad to hear that you got an order. What is the typical turn around time for you to get your orders? 2 weeks sounds longer than normal to me, but I don't know what to expect. I do know that I have been told that a back-ordered color will "be on the next shipment", and it takes a long time when I am waiting for it :)
     
  14. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Sooooo why are they raising the boards 10%? :rolleyes:
    I'm confused........do they EVER LOWER the costs of boards?
    Or anything for that matter?

    And you wonder why the average framer
    keeps getting smaller slices of the pie.
     
  15. SusieQ

    SusieQ CGF, Certified Grumble Framer

    Bob - I re-posted on main forum.

    Usual turn round is 7-9 days. I started getting antsy when I read more about the strike on The G. Called them and they told me it had shipped. They used a different carrier than usual. It traveled from Wheeling to Nashville and then back north to me in Louisville. Sounds like the long way around. 4 days to make a 1-2 day trip.
     
  16. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    The price increase is to make up for the lower volume of framing being done during the recession. The cost to run the business remains static so when the volume reduces there is no longer enough money to pay the facility and employee expenses. The 10% is what was going to keep them in business. The lost sales during the strike will force another price increase and if the workers are given pay increases that will cause for another increase.

    Now the question is that if Crescent's prices were the same as Bainbridge would they be able to maintain the volume of business they currently have. Would you pay the same or more for C than B. In my nearly 32 years that I have been framing the one thing I know is that Crescent has always remained strong because of their pricing. In the last 3 years I have purchased no more than a half dozen boards made by anybody other than Crescent.

    We have seen the same issue with frame shops during the recession. Many of them were priced at a level that made them money during the housing boom. When the boom ended their fixed expenses remained static. In order to stay afloat they had to raise prices or cut employees. The ones that raised prices mostly did not fare well since customers looked to competitors. Some of the ones that cut employees were able to survive on lower volume but lower expenses as well. The majotirty had to close up shop.
     
  17. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Well if there is LOWER DEMAND.....they should cut the workers!? DUH!

    10% might keep them in biz.....but then when we order the matboard...NOT ONLY Is it going to be MORE EXPENSIVE for us .....but we're gonna have to sit and wait forever for it becuz it's been backordered....

    Sooooo if things pick up....and everything is hunky dory.......are they going to LOWER THE PRICE! ? YAH RIGHT!!!! We are really at their mercy......becuz hey supply us...WE keep them in business.....

    I think its RUDE and TOTALLY TERRIBLE that ANYONE would raise prices right now.......especailly if they cant even fill the orders!! ITS KRAP!
     
  18. CAframer

    CAframer SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    That's a very weak strategy, reflective of poor management, and if taken to the logical conclusion would result in their demise.

    Any management team worth their salt should be looking for at least a 5% productivity gain year after year (good times and bad), and should focus their pricing strategy on what the market/product will reasonably bear, not on full absorption.
     
  19. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Sounds like the union may be impeding that with demands of more pay and possibly more concessions in other areas. That is often the problem with unions is that rather than merit based rewards they want it because they exist.
     
  20. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Nicole, your point is well taken. Now that you mention it, cutting workers might be a key issue in the strike, and it could be even more important than wage increases. The union may push to negotiate contract provisions improving the workers' job security. Whether the union negotiates for higher wages or unproductive manhours, the employer would suffer increased cost without increased productivity.

    Our best assumption, since we know almost nothing of the situation, is that all parties are negotiating in good faith and fairness, toward a quick settlement and return to work.
     
  21. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    What? Fire the trained people that have been making the boards so that in a matter of months they can rehire, or have to train new workers? All just to save you a few pennies for a short time? (10% or $7 is 70¢ or 17.5¢ for each 16 by 20 cut from the board)

    Nicole. When I buy length I don't give all my customers a discount. When I have to buy a box i still charge my regular price. I can then afford to give high volume customers a discounted price, or forestall having to raise prices incrementally.

    I don't begrudge the workers wanting a raise or Crescent wanting to be able to pay their bills. Groceries don't go down, gas doesn't go down, electricity doesn't go down, the cable bill doesn't go down. Why should matboard?

    In the early 80's I complained about my cable bill being $25 a month. When they deregulated and said it was so competition could better control the price and that it would go down, I didn't hold my breath :) Same with mat board, and health care. It ain't going down :)
     
  22. simplymatted

    simplymatted SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    They need to pay for that strike somehow.
     
  23. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    HELLL YAH fire them!!! sooo they can raise the prices AGAIN in a couple of months....10% doesnt sound like much....but then its 10% again...on the already 10% from the last one.....:faintthud:......

    MY POINT IS..........any company that we RELY on to run our business has pretty much got us by the sackage cus they can make it any price they want...WE NEED IT...to keep us going......

    THEY DONT stand behind WHY they raise the prices or tell us!!
    Production~wise they can't keep up with our DOWN industry anyway!!
    So yah......10% doesnt seem like a lot but for crying out loud....they dont deserve it in my opinion. Its just another way to stick it to use for their POOR MARKETING schemes.
     
  24. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Nicole, if they can't keep up when we are down, as you stated, then how can they keep up when we pick up for XMas and they have fewer employees?

    Buy Bainbridge. I like it better, Crescent has great colors, more vivid, but when I cut Crescent it still "feels" like fingernails on a chalkboard. There is just something in their boards that cuts "wrong" for me. I use it as my customers like the colors, but I have to steel myself as I cut :)

    Bainbridge is cheaper, in price, than Crescent. And my distribs almost always have it. Rarely do I get back ordered. Not so with Crescent. If you want to send a "message" to Crescent then buy from their competitors. Price goes down when supply goes up. Supply can go up when it isn't being ordered and the manufacturer keeps making the boards.

    Don't buy it. When you distrib says they have a sub for Bainbridge ask if you get the same price as Crescent is too expensive. Just keep ordering other makers boards and keep reiterating Crescent is too expensive for what you get. If that is how you feel.

    If another thread we are telling Pat to talk to the head of the Art Dept about the prof. Here I'll tell you if you have an issue with Crescent then tell them, not us. Tell them by calling, or by buying from someone else. But just taking the increases and not complaining, to them, isn't gonna get the prices dropped. Oh, and when I complained about flum in my mats from Crescent I got a call from Crescent. They care what we think, but if they don't know what we are thinking then, honestly, why SHOULD they care?

    Call them, or buy from someone else.

    Have I told you lately that I love you?
     
  25. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God


    Buying Bainbridge will put your striking union freinds out of a job Bob. Also if you are paying more for Crescent than Bainbridge somebody is really taking advantage of you.
     
  26. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I hadn't heard of any production backlogs over the years. If you had been having problems with out of stocks I would guess that was an inventory issue with a supplier and not at the manufacturer.
     
  27. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    SUFFER THROUGH it like the rest of us!

    I use crescent and bainbridge both....my thing is ... these companies cant justify these increases! Where does it stop!!? Unless we talk about it and complain to our reps..they wont know or dont care.

    Yah I'll call them monday when I havent eaten and really crabby....;)
    AWWW ur soo cute! but I'm not that easy.....only chocolate works on me! ;)
     
  28. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Yah but you can't tell me that our suppliers arent going to feel the hit from this strike krap......didn't you say you just had a bunch of out of stocks when you ordered??
     
  29. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Yes the out of stocks were from the supplier not receiving their delivery due to those that are striking. If the wokers would return to work we would have plenty of inventory. Some of the small suppliers may be receiving orders but my distributor receives between 35 and 40 pallets twice per month. It will be pretty hard for management to smuggle that kind of quantity out of the warehouse in the trunk of their cars.
     
  30. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I pay $8 and change for Bainbridge and 8.50-8.75 per for crescent. I buy as needed and don't stock up. I don't use selects or paper mats and use a lot of the rags as well. They cost me more for Crescent as well. I don't doubt I am being hosed at those prices. But I pay them and complain when the rep shows up. He says, "yeah prices suck don't they. Oh have you seen my new chrome on my bike..." I get distracted and next thing I know he is gone...


    I was telling Nicole to "send a message" I don't think Crescent really counts on my purchases to feed their workers :) Personally I still haven't read anything explaining the strike either way. I don't know whether to feel for the strikers or be mad at management.

    Bet you had to read that last sentence twice :) Honestly don't know what the strike is about, or how the negotiations are going. If it isn't in the news it can't be too successful for either party...
     
  31. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    You must have missed the Crescent posting. They have plenty of inventory as they were gearing up for XMas and for the strike. She also said that they had plenty of others to do the work until it was settled. So inventory shouldn't be an issue. And with facilities around the world, OK China, they should be able to get mats here for XMas, without having to cross picket lines. Again hurting the strikers, but I am throwing scenarios not choices I would want to see.

    If the workers and management would get together them maybe they would get back to work.
     
  32. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Bob I think you are missing some posts in your reading here. My supplier should have received 35 plus pallets of matboard already and is ready to order another 35 plus pallets now. The 2nd largest customer Crescent has also has not received a single board. The third largest customer Crescent has got nothing as well. My supplier is not in the top 3 of Crescent's customers.

    Since a distributor that ordered 2 pallets received an order would lead me to believe they are hauling boxes out of the distribution center in the trunks of their car to fill small orders. It will take quite a bit of time for them to haul 35 pallets worth of mat board out in the trunks of cars to fill my distributor's order. The 2 pallet order was placed more than a week after the 35 plus pallet order. I'm just glad I am sitting on several thousand sheets of board coming into Christmas.
     
  33. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Wow, you have little respect for the people you buy from! If I felt that way I would refuse to order from them. To suggest that the management is breaking a picket line and using their personal property to be scabs is a pretty outrageous claim to make. I would think that if the Union even thought that was happening there would be footage on the TV or in the newspapers.

    The distributor said she got her shipment from a non typical company, and that the route was pretty circuitous, going states out of the way to get to them. So in my eyes the company has had to go outside their usual shippers to get one that would cross the picket line. Maybe they are having trouble getting other shippers to cross the line as well. I really don't think the management would "sneak out" boxes under the cover of night for so little a return. The cost to the company, in lost trust and "good will" in negotiating with the Union Reps would far outweigh the couple of thousands of dollars a small order would net them. Not to mention the damage to personal property the teamsters of yore would have done to any suspected scab wagon :)

    Strikes are bad enough, please do not float out unsubstantiated rumors about a major company in our industry. The LJ0M-J-TK monthly rumors are bad enough, please don't throw Crescent under the bus.
     
  34. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I've seen a lot of unions cause a lot of companies harm to the point of the businesses shutting down production in that state or even the US. I have had family members that have had to deal with unions to the point of being prepared to close a company down because it would no longer be worth keeping the business open. I was in mortgage lending for nearly a decade and did hundreds of loans for union members and trust me when I say I never saw a union employee that was underpaid.

    Do you think the major automakers would have to file bankruptcy every decade if the union members were paid based on merit. Would the gov't have to bail out Chrysler and GM if the union members were paid based on merit. Do you honestly believe that a union member who does nothing more than screw a panel onto an automobile is worth $138,000 per yer plus huge amounts of benefits and pension for life. I don't but I have made a mortgage loan for that guy. He still couldn't read and I had to read the loan package to him word by word and I personally required his wife to initial every page that I read stating she heard me read what was actually on the page.

    Now in the future if I have to buy mat board that is manufactured overseas to make a fraction of what the union workers attaching panels to an auto makes whoes fault will that be. I will blame the union how about you.
     
  35. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I am not gonna blame the union. Feel free to do that, but I don't want to see companies return to what they were like pre-union. Workplace safety is too important to me to allow that to happen again. If companies were able to be trusted to treat their employees well and to provide their employees a fair wage and safe working conditions then unions would be useless.

    Not all companies treat their employees poorly, and I have no idea what working conditions are like at Crescent, or what the wage structure is like. But just because you can point to individual examples of "needless" Unions you can't generalize that all Unions are "needless". Just as I didn't generalize that "all companies" treat their employees poorly. But enough have in the past and enough do today to warrant Unions staying in place.

    Sadly the most current example I can point to, DeCoster Egg Farm, the folks responsible for all the egg recalls, and in the past for hideous housing conditions of their illegal immigrant employees, and their hog farm sewage pits, is a non Union company. The companies where the employees need union representation seem to be the companies that are non union.

    I hope this strike ends soon, but I am not willing to condemn the strikers or the company without adequate information. As a Democrat I am pretty pro-union, but that does not mean that I am anti-company. Just pro-union. I don't see the two a mutually exclusive.

    BTW I have a brother that is in the Elevator Union. I think their perks would make the car unions look like pikers :)
     
  36. Grey Owl

    Grey Owl SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Another reason for the price increase is the increase in raw materials.

    For example, I primarily use cotton rag mats. Cotton prices are way up. I was reading in todays WSJ that cotton prices and are now the highest since the civil war.
     
  37. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Is it possible that gov't employees were lazy and never did the job they were paid to do. Don't worry Bob because they are union employees that can not lose there jobs for the harm they allowed. I can see at least 2 different gov't agencies in your example that will be proteced by their union status.
     
  38. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    What are you talking about Jeff? If you're suggesting that the employees were to blame, I would completely disagree with you. They do what the company tells them to do, or they don't work. Times are so tough that you don't quit a job unless you have something else already lined up.

    In my example you highlighted I was talking about a farmer that got kicked out of Maine for abusing his staff. He housed "illegal aliens" in converted trailers, had raw sewage backing up in the overcrowded housing, and the chickens were treated worse than the employees.

    So he moved his operations out of state and it looks like he is up to his old tricks. His hog farms have "leaked" raw manure out of his septic lagoons, and his chicken farms have "poisoned" people in 18 states at last count. If you buy and eat eggs you prbably buy from Jack DeCoster. So good luck to you, the eggs are probably all better now, just don't let egg shell fall in your pancake batter :)

    Here's a list of egg brands that sell DeCoster eggs. Albertson's among them. Chances are that in many stores all the eggs in the dairy case, regardless of the name on the package are from an egg producer that knowingly, willingly , regardless of any governmental "Union" employees sells tainted eggs from poorly treated animals and employees.

    I don't get the Union hatred when this is obviously a poor person and company to work for.
     
  39. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Gov't regulators were paid to do a job that they never performed. They need to be fired regardless of their union status. They should be stripped of all future benefits because they never performed the job they were paid to do. That's what would happen in the private sector and maybe criminal charges against the regulators that were in charge of our safety.
     
  40. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    So a private employer can not only fire an employee but retroactively confiscate their benefits?
     
  41. GUMBY GCF

    GUMBY GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    From mat board to chickens nice diversity...
     
  42. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Criminal negligence can make an employee ineligble for guaranteed future payments and compensation. A 401k would not be subject to this but many government employees receive lifetime income. If you serve 1 single day in Congress you receive that amount of pay for the rest of your life.
     
  43. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    Oh, you've seen nothing yet. Just watch!
     
  44. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Bob, in your support of the workers here which union has your business joined. Unions are not just for large businesses with employees. There can be no call for solidarity if you are not supporting (through membership) those you want us to join.
     
  45. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Ah, so that's why the Wall Street bankers are looking to work. They had their bonuses taken away after they caused the economic crash.. Thank you Jeff for explaining how it would work.
    All because some here hate Unions and want them "gone" so that the "Free Market" can regulate itself :)
     
  46. Pat Murphey

    Pat Murphey SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Just to be clear, vested benefits from any [IRS] qualified pension plan are not subject to confiscation under ERISA (Federal law).
     
  47. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Back to mat board.

    Good Job Crescent as product is flowing once again. I have received several reports on shipments arriving at distributors as well as others being in transit. I am glad to see that holiday business will not be terribly disrupted.
     
  48. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Are you saying the strike has been settled?
     
  49. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    No just management moving product out the door. Independant truckers are moving the merchandise to their destinations.
     
  50. Jim Miller

    Jim Miller SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    It is true that unions are among the most powerful of Congressional lobbyists. They write legislation they want to promote, and influence legislative bodies and regulatory agencies, but for the record, unions have never had their own regulatory power.

    Regulation of enterprise is reserved for government, mostly through agencies created for the purpose. Your suggestion that unions can regulate, and that the only other alternative is for the free market to regulate itself, ignores the regulatory role of government, and its tremendous impact on free enterprise.
     
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