Olympic Industries
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Understanding soft wood lumber markets through data analysis
  • Market Intelligence
Olympic Industries. North Vancouver, BC

Olympic operates worldwide, and that provides immense advantages for our trade partners. Because we monitor all markets, we know what’s happening in all markets. The data is intricate, but when you start to untie the complex knot of global lumber economies, patterns begin to emerge. Understanding what's happening abroad enables us to forecast domestic conditions with unrivalled accuracy.

The benefits to our partners are twofold: not only can we act in the moment to help them capitalize on immediate opportunities, we can simultaneously advise them in developing strategies to best maneuver in the global market long term.

  • Market Trends
Western Red Cedar being staged for shipment, Pacific Lumber Remanufacturing. Surrey BC

Many lumber companies specialize in one or two particular regions, products, or markets. While that approach has been effective in the past, at Olympic we know the market is no longer simply regional, and so we operate in numerous markets across the world. Plenty of companies can put together a handful of the pieces to the puzzle, whereas we’re able to see the complete picture. And with this knowledge we can predict with confidence how the market will move.

Traditionally, the lumber industry has been slow to innovate. At Olympic we’ve made innovation a priority, constantly searching out the newest methods, technologies, and talent to maximize profits for both ourselves and our trade partners. Every year we add more powerful tools to our kit, harnessing new technologies to sharpen our insights. And every day we get better and better at analyzing the information we gather, enabling us to accurately forecast trends further and further ahead. The more you know, the more confidently you can act. Every choice that we make at Olympic is backed by an unbeatable combination of veteran industry knowledge and exhaustive trend analysis.

Our industry has been around a long time. Today, many of our industry leaders are beginning to retire, and it grows increasingly vital to recruit and mentor young people to replenish the talent pool. It’s our responsibility to build the next generation of our industry. To that end, we’ve made a radical commitment to search out the most promising emerging talent and nurture their development through a thorough and supportive mentoring process. Over the last decade, Olympic has recruited 20 new hires to our trading floor. These trainees usually spend at least a year at various divisions throughout .

Olympic before developing a business plan. We see each trader on our floor as an investment, an integral part of the team. We continue to perfect our training process with each candidate that goes through it. Olympic just finished its best year yet in our four decades in business. The exchange of knowledge, experience, and ideas between our veteran members and our newer hires is one of the most exciting aspects of the company. At Olympic we believe we’re more than a team — we’re a family. When our partners win, we win. The success of one is the success of all.

  • Risk Management
Magma Transload. Squamish, BC

Our trade partners place significant trust in us, and we take on that responsibility with the utmost diligence. At Olympic we take every possible measure to protect our customers from risk. To that end, we have assembled an expert team who is focused on trading derivatives on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to serve our clients. In this way we can manage prices as a means to minimize the potential for loss for both our customers and mills.

By using Futures to set prices, our partners can rest secure in the knowledge that no surprises await them down the road. In turn, equipped with this knowledge, they can more precisely plan their future projects to ensure that they deliver on time while maximizing margin.

Olympic’s reputation is built on trust, which we’ve developed over decades working honestly and transparently with long-term partners. Our customers and mills return to us year after year because they know that their investment is safe with us, as we’ve proven time and again. These kinds of sustained, collaborative relationships are the foundation of our business, and those relationships are built on trust.

  • Global Arbitrage
General Assembly. Nanaimo, BC

Being a global leader requires a global perspective. We compete in markets around the world, so we can see how events in China exert very tangible influence on conditions in New Zealand, or how fluctuations in Europe alter the market here in North America. Every region is interlinked, and a splash in one makes ripples in another.

We can leverage our global reach to better serve our customers at a regional level. We constantly collect and analyze data across all markets. Understandably, our customers are focused on their particular region and expertise. But the breadth of information we have access to can still prove beneficial to them.

Lumber is a highly volatile commodity. We occupy a unique overview position in which we can observe all markets at once. As we monitor the prices and supplies in various regions around the world, we’re able to notify our customers of the best opportunities regarding when, what, and how to buy. Together we can take advantage of regional price discrepancies to find exactly what a client needs for the lowest cost. Often this results in substantial savings, ensuring Olympic customers get the most from every dollar.

Customers come to Olympic for much more than just our exceptional product they’re reaping the full benefits of tested industry expertise paired with unsurpassed market analytics. It’s this Olympic advantage that turns initial sales into relationships that last decades.

  • Merchandising
Visscher Lumber. Chilliwack, BC

Many companies are interested only in moving a certain quantity of product — the specific needs of individual customers are not necessarily a top priority. As a result, they’re inflexible, offering only certain tallies and loads. While those options may contain the product that a customer needs, there’s often excess material that they’re forced to buy.

Olympic’s buying power and market insight enables us to provide customized solution which address a customer’s specific needs, while often saving them money in the process. We’ve worked with many of our partner mills for years, and as preferred customers we’re able to request custom loads on behalf of our clients. In this way we can adjust tallys to moderate pricing and help our customers fill in specific products to maintain a balanced inventory. Our reputation and flexibility ensures our customers get exactly what they need, when they need it, at the best value for their dollar.

Our stature in the industry also allowsus to acquire large volumes of product and distribute a spectrum of tallys and grades to the regions across the globe which have the greatest demand. With our global market knowledge, we can target these areas of opportunity. And our flexibility and dexterity enables us to move rapidly to supply the specific products that they need. This powerful combination of intelligence and speed maximizes profits.

  • Logistics
Blind Channel DLS. Squamish, BC

It doesn’t matter how much wood you sell if you can’t get it to your buyers on time. At Olympic, we don’t consider our work done until the product is in our customers’ hands. That’s why we have teams dedicated exclusively to both ocean and overland freight. Our freight experts oversee every step of your product’s journey—from its inventory location to its final destination.

Freight is becoming a more difficult enterprise by the day. Demand for vehicles is rising while the pool of drivers and operators shrinks every year. Fortunately, given our longstanding relationships with truck and rail companies across North America, Olympic can ensure our customers’ orders get priority. We communicate directly with carriers, so we always know exactly where your shipment is in its journey and can rapidly address any issues that may arise. For those interested in import and export, we’re well-versed in the complexities of international shipping.

We’ve achieved this level of expertise by building logistics into our training and mentorship programs from day one. Freight dynamics is an integral part of our training process—all new team members spend at least a year working in the transportation division before they step foot on the trading floor. This ensures every one of our traders understands the importance of freight and has the knowledge to best serve our customers. Every step of the way, your product is in capable hands.