2005 SALES FORECAST +6.0% EAST SOUTH CENTRAL

This region's economy rises and falls with the fortunes of its mid-sized cities, manufacturing plants and military spending. The East South Central region sometimes gets overlooked because it's outside the hustle-and-bustle of the nation's largest metropolitan areas, but Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee are enjoying some very respectable growth this year, and the region's 21 percent year-to-date increase in building permits through August dwarfs increases in other regions. Nashville is hitting the high notes in housing growth this year, with more than 14,000 building permits through September. Birmingham and Memphis are next on the hit parade. Both cities had over 5,000 building permits issued during the same time period. It's a pretty tune on the manufacturing side, too. A German wood-flooring firm will invest $200 million to $300 million in a factory in northern Alabama that will create 400 jobs, and Nissan will invest $47.3 million in a Dechard, Tenn., plant expansion.

ELECTRICAL WHOLESALERS' SALES
(in millions of dollars)
EW Estimates
Final Final Final Final Forecast Forecast
2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005
East South Central 3,730.0 3,386.6 3,266.9 3,338.8 3,639.3 3,857.2
Alabama 847.2 769.2 742.0 758.4 826.6 876.1
Kentucky 1,030.5 935.6 902.5 922.4 1,005.4 1,065.6
Mississippi 357.5 324.6 313.1 320.0 348.8 369.7
Tennessee 1,494.9 1,357.2 1,309.3 1,338.1 1,458.5 1,545.8
EMPLOYMENT STATISTICS
Actual in thousands
EC M C G
East South Central 41,541 1,148.4 3,861.0 1,288.9
Alabama 10,195 290.6 950.1 348.8
Birmingham MSA 3,436 39.3 271.9 70.8
Huntsville MSA 975 30.2 101.9 40.9
Mobile MSA 1,338 20.3 133.1 34.9
Montgomery MSA 922 15.9 87.5 37.4
Tuscaloosa MSA 539 12.5 34.8 20.9
Kentucky 11,175 263.0 933.3 298.0
Lexington-Fayette MSA 1,928 40.6 144.0 52.1
Louisville MSA 4,065 71.0 321.4 66.6
Owensboro MSA 135 6.5 22.1 7.8
Mississippi 4,479 180.3 547.6 240.4
Jackson MSA 1,418 19.8 127.4 50.4
Tennessee 15,692 414.5 1,430.0 401.7
Chattanooga MSA 1,596 34.5 124.4 34.4
Johnson City-Kingsport-Bristol MSA 1,758 37.7 101.1 31.0
Knoxville MSA NA 40.9 213.7 56.9
Memphis MSA 4,001 50.9 323.6 83.8
Nashville MSA 5,762 79.9 403.9 90.4

WHAT DO YOU DO WITH ALL THIS DATA?

For step-by-step instructions on crunching the numbers to come up with a sensible business plan, see page 16.

Learn how to take the sales estimates and employment numbers for the region and metropolitan areas that your distributorship serves and tailor them to help you forecast your company's own sales potential.

You can:

  • Determine your company's sales potential for various customer groups.
  • Find new customer markets.
  • Compare markets for potential expansion.
  • Determine if your sales are at the optimum level.
  • Gauge business prospects and conditions in end-user markets.