Twin Oak Forest Products Finds Balance Between Domestic and International Sales

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The following appeared in the 2015 annual report for VCNB’s parent company Community Bancshares, Inc.(CBI). We thought our blog readers would enjoy learning about this homegrown local business.

When Randy and Polly Young started Young’s Logging, their daughter Marcie was just three and son Hunter was only six months old. That was in 1980 and the business, like their kids, is all grown up.

Today they operate as Twin Oak Forest Products. Since recently consolidating locations to one large, scenic spot on Pumpkin Ridge in Vinton County, they seem to have hit their stride.

Twin Oak is a multifaceted operation that offers an impressive variety of products appealing to a retail customer and to commercial buyers who come from across the region and even across the world to take advantage of their superior products and services.

VCNB visited with the family on a snowy February day and learned the story of how the business came to be what it is today. Randy, who has a degree in Forestry from Hocking College, explained that he began his career working as a log buyer for other companies. “In 1980, I opened my business because I had reached my peak with the company I was with at the time,” Randy noted.

Polly added that they bought their first dozer at 24% interest and set out hoping to do well enough they could make the payments. Fast forward 14 years and the company had not only survived, they were growing. In 1994, the company began sawmilling and was able to  expand their product line.

Today the company employs seventeen people including Polly, who does the bookkeeping, and Hunter who is very much following in his father’s footsteps. “He and Marcie used to ride in the log truck with me,” Randy laughed as the pair reminisced about their children and the business. “Hunter worked every summer from the time he was fourteen,” Polly said. “He went to school for Forestry and graduated in 2000.”

On the logging side of the business, Twin Oak exports logs to countries across the globe including Malaysia, Indonesia, Spain and beyond. “We work with a broker on some and do some of the deals ourselves,” Randy said. “There’s a German customer here today and Japanese customers coming in.”

When asked if cultural differences cause challenges in international business, Randy explained that it hasn’t made a difference. “We’ve worked with them long enough, we know what they want so it hasn’t been a problem,” he added.

On the lumber side of business, they sell a lot domestically and continue to grow in that area. This lumber can have many uses but is typically used for furniture and cabinetry. “Probably eighty percent of it goes to neighboring states. Pennsylvania, West Virginia,Kentucky and here in Ohio,” Randy said. “A smaller percentage goes south to places like North Carolina and Tennessee.”

He noted they also sell a lot to a company in Newark, Ohio where the veneer log is sliced and is often sold internationally.Twin Oak offers a number of finished products that are sold to customers in Southern Ohio too.

Wood flooring and paneling are popular items. “They can come in to choose their paneling and their flooring. The paneling is so popular we try to keep it in stock,” Randy said. They are also known for log cabin kits and timber framing. Randy said they can provide kits and materials for everything from a garden shed to an elaborate dream home.

In addition, the company sells grade lumber and railroad ties. They also buy timber and typically have two or three contract crews in the woods at one time.
Randy commented on the ever changing American economy and the boost his business has experienced by expanding to international dealings. “It’s definitely a world economy, it’s not just us in this country now,” he said. “We’d certainly be lost without the international economy.”

Randy and Polly were also complimentary of their relationship with Vinton County National Bank. “It’s been a good relationship. The bank has stood with us through thick and thin, the good days and the bad days. And there certainly have been some bad days,” Randy said. “We’ve been with you since we started out in 1980.”

When they aren’t busy with their business, Randy and Polly enjoy spending time with their family including five grandchildren who are their pride and joy.

One of the most rewarding things about community banking is getting
to know customers. We are proud of the hard working Young family and Twin Oak Forest Products!

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