Modular Building Institute



August 29, 2008
Contact: Tom Hardiman
Modular Building Institute
888-811-3288 x158 toll-free

Commercial Modular Construction Sectors Showing Optimism Despite Overall Economic Concerns

Charlottesville, VA - The Modular Building Institute (MBI) has partnered with Robert W. Baird & Co. (Baird) for the purpose of preparing joint industry surveys on the commercial modular construction market. The second quarter 2008 survey results have been released and, despite some concerns, the results demonstrate that companies engaged in the commercial modular construction industry are optimistic:

* Dealers reported a 14% growth in leasing revenues and a 12% increase in unit sales compared to a year ago. Lease revenue growth, fueled by an increase in rental rates, occurred despite a decrease in utilization of 150 to 200 basis points.

* Dealers remain positive about lease and sales growth for the upcoming year, expecting an 8% increase in lease growth and a 22% increase in sales.

* Regarding capital expenditures for the upcoming year, dealer forecast a 2% decrease over the next 12 months, which is significantly better than the 12% decrease dealers reported in the first quarter.

* Manufacturers reported a 14% decline in revenues during the second quarter compared to the prior 12 months, based on 11% fewer floors produced and 15% fewer floors shipped for the period.

* Manufacturers forecast a 3% decrease in revenues over the next twelve months, compared to a 2% increase reported in the first quarter.

The Architecture Billings Index is derived from a monthly "Work-on-the-Boards" survey and produced by the AIA Economics & Market Research Group. The findings amount to a leading economic indicator that provides an approximately six month glimpse into the future of nonresidential construction activity, with a score below 50 indicating a decrease in architectural billings. Overall, the ABI for June 2008 was below 50 for the 5th consecutive month. While billings were down, inquiries for new business rose back above 50, providing some optimism. Conditions improved in the Midwest to a score of 51 and the South with 50, but weakened in the Western United States.

"This survey demonstrates that our industry is fairing well within the overall construction market," said Tom Hardiman, MBI executive director. "While growth has been slowing overall, MBI and its members remain optimistic about the upcoming year."

About MBI
Founded in 1983, the Modular Building Institute is the only, international, non-profit trade association serving non-residential modular construction. Our regular membership includes wholesale manufacturers, direct manufacturers, and dealers of commercial modular buildings, while our associate members are companies supplying building components, services, and financing to the industry. It is MBI's mission to grow the industry and its capabilities by encouraging innovation, quality, and professionalism through communication, education, and recognition. MBI also administers an educational foundation. For more information, visit

About Baird
Baird, established in 1919, is an employee-owned, international wealth management, capital markets, private equity and asset management firm with offices in the United States, Europe and Asia. Baird's principal operating subsidiaries are Robert W. Baird & Co. in the United States and Robert W. Baird Group Ltd. in Europe. Baird also has an operating subsidiary in Asia supporting Baird's private equity operations. Robert W. Baird & Co. is a member of the New York Stock Exchange and other principal exchanges and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation (SIPC). Robert W. Baird Ltd. and Baird Capital Partners Europe are authorized and regulated in the United Kingdom by the Financial Services Authority.


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