Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Joe Stegmayer’

Joe Stegmayer, Cavco Industries, MHI Chairman, Insights from Innovative Housing Showcase

June 11th, 2019 Comments off

 

JoeStegmayerCavcoIndustriesManufacturedHousingInstituteMHIChairmanInsightsInnovativeHousingShowcaseMHProNews

With enough patience, facts and patterns in dispute often reveal themselves more clearly to those with an open mind who are honestly seeking clarity. By definition, the closed-minded can’t be reasoned with.

 

This report will have two primary components.  The first will be from the recent and positive Innovative Housing Showcase, held at the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Joe Stegmayer, former Chairman, President, and CEO of Cavco Industries was prominent there.  The second will look again at a leadership and related questions that keep arising at Cavco.

 

MHI Chairman Stegmayer At Recent Innovative Housing Showcase in Washington, D.C.

Five U.S. congressmen and several other senior government officials took tours, said Joseph Stegmayer, Cavco’s former chairman and CEO,” said Phoenix metro’s AC Central, a Gannett media publication that is part of the USA Today network.

This is one of the best unsubsidized ways to promote affordable housing,” Stegmayer said of manufacturing housing, per that same source.  He said that factory-built homes can be made at about half the cost of comparable dwellings built on site.

Some other facts, per AZ Central:

·        Cavco exhibited a 1,050 square foot home with two bedrooms and two baths that was built at one of its two factories in Virginia that retails for about $64,000.  What they didn’t specify was that it was the lone single sectional on display in the National Mall in Washington, D.C.  Skyline Champion displayed two multi-sectional models.

·        Cavco was one of 19 exhibitors at the National Mall and teamed with UMH Properties, a real estate investment trust or REIT that owns and operates manufactured-home communities around the nation.

This was the only news report found on line as of the date and time shown about the publicly traded firm’s (CVCO) involvement in the project. We’ll return to that factoid later.

 

CavcoIndustriesInnovativeHousingShowcaseAZCentralArizonaRepublicUSATodayGannettNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

In the MHI branded video below, Stegmayer says: “Manufactured Housing is so much of an untold story. It has come a long way in a short number of years. And now were providing homes that rival anything built on site at half the cost. And so, to meet the affordable housing crisis in this country, and there truly is a need for affordable housing, manufactured housing can go a long way to doing that.”

 

 

Stagmayer continued by saying, “We can provide a home for millions of people who otherwise can not afford a home and would be renting for the rest of their lives. Here [he’s standing in a manufactured home] they can buy a home, build equity, just like any other home owner. And, ah, stay in that home for years or resell it and move up to a larger home if someday they get a larger family.”

A lot of flexibility in manufactured housing.  A lot of sustainability,” Stegmayer said during his portion of the video. Let’s note in fairness that these are very similar points that MHLivingNews, MHProNews and scores of others have made about our industry. Our publisher has noted that the firms involved in the Innovative Housing Showcase are to be applauded. On the thrust of several of these points by Stegmayer, we’d editorially concur.

But what follows in that same video is both true and troubling.  It gets near a central issue that is hampering manufactured home industry growth.

 

Manufactured Housing Professionals, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Must Promote These Two Words

 

Secretary Ben Carson, as the head of HUD, made this National Mall opportunity available in conjunction with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Dr. Carson explains that they encouraged local municipalities to look at manufactured homes and look at their regulations.  Carson said there may have been reasons in the past for some regulations, but no longer.  Why hasn’t the HUD Secretary mentioned “enhanced preemption?”  Is it possible that he’s not been briefed on that point by HUD staff? 

But more questions arise from this MHI branded video and recent mainstream media reports.

Looking again at MHI’s chairman’s comment, it isn’t as if the manufactured home industry has suddenly appeared out of nowhere and has an “untold story,” as Stegmayer framed it.  Indeed, Arlington, VA based MHI – a location not far from the National Mall – claims to have told that story to millions of people.  See their claim to that effect illustrated in their own still from an MHI video, below.

If so, the public literally are not buying what MHI is selling, based on recent new manufactured home production and shipment trends.

Look at the stills from the late 2018 MHI self-touting video and compare it to the fact that manufactured housing has had 8 months of consecutive year-over-year decreases in shipment levels.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHINewClassofHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Most people think of momentum as forward motion.  Does it mean something different to MHI?  Momentum for more consolidation? Still from MHI Video, logos added by MHProNews.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIVideoStillMHIPromotionalClaims

That downturn is now into month number 8.

 

Further, manufactured homes are not an untold story at all.

As the AZ Central story reflected, starting with the headline, a HUD Code manufactured home is errantly termed a ‘mobile home.’  Over the years, has Cavco or MHI failed to brief that media outlet, which issues periodic reports on hometown firm Cavco, about the proper terminology to be used?  If not, then they are not following the logic of their own prior chairman, who said this.

TimWilliams21stMortgageCorpGoodArgumentsQuoteRespondEveryStoryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

The story most told is a painfully familiar one to anyone who tracks news coverage about ‘mobile homes’ and ‘manufactured homes.’  The bulk of the reports are negative, as the screen capture below indicates.

MobileHomesNewsGoogleSearchDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

While the evidence is anecdotal, it is also not disputed by live audience of manufactured home industry professionals when they are asked:

·        does the public here more bad news or good news about manufactured homes? 

·        Is the impression conveyed in third party reports largely positive one, or largely negative?

·        Manufactured home industry professionals almost universally agree that the image is a problematic one.

That being so, it is not an untold story. Rather, it is a told story that is all-too-often being mistakenly framed.

Where is MHI’s effective response to that largely undisputed fact?  Because it is obvious that their claim of millions exposed to their advertorials – if true – has not worked. The shipment numbers and other research proves that point.  Further, only 8 percent of home shoppers, per Zillow, considered a manufactured home in research that firm did.  Many of those who considered a manufactured home never bought one. Put yourself briefly in the shoes of a possible manufactured home customer. If they simply googled news about ‘mobile homes’ or ‘manufactured homes,’ wouldn’t that explain why – given that much reporting is negative – that the public literally isn’t buying one?

 

Zillow2016HomeBuyersSurveyManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Only 8 percent of housing shoppers considered a mobile or manufactured home, and many of those did not buy one

 

What do those third party research facts say about the effectiveness of the industry?  So Stegmayer’s own words about the “untold story” – seen through that lens – is troubling at best.  The screen capture from the date and time shown is but one example. 

 

MobileHomesNewsGoogleSearchDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Furthermore, there is no evidence that HUD Secretary Carson has been advised about enhanced preemption.  MHProNews has asked officials at HUD to respond to that concern.  They have no comment on that now.

Why not?  Doesn’t their failure to comment on such a straightforward question itself raise concerns that perhaps Secretary Carson has not been brief about enhanced preemption?

Stegmayer has had face time with Secretary Carson on numerous occasions in the last year or so.  Did Cavco’s former president, and the man who is still MHI’s chairman, not raise the issue of “enhanced preemption?”  If not, why not?

HUDBenCarsonJoeStegmayerCavcoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

These are questions that Cavco’s shareholders – among others – ought to be asking.

If the report by AZ Central is accurate, and only 5 congressional representatives bothered to come and see what MHI dubbed Homes on the Hill.  That too suggests something was missed by MHI, doesn’t it?  There are 535 members of the U.S. House (435) and Senate (100). Numbers of those in Congress get contributions from MHI’s PAC.  So why did such a small group of representatives come over a 5 day event?

The MHI “Homes on the Hill” videos are a fine idea. 

·        The videos are well done in a technical sense.

·        But where is the promotion for those videos? 

·        Why is it that the MHI video posted above that was published on Jun 2, 2019, after a week online, has only 732 views, per YouTube, as of 4:49 PM ET on 6.9.2019? Ponder the point that John Oliver’s viral hit on numbers of MHI members errantly named “Mobile Homes” has had over 6 million hits on YouTube in about 2 months. That’s the graphic comparison that industry professionals, investors, and advocates must ponder.  Stegmayer’s choice of words ‘the untold story’ is not supported by facts.  The story about manufactured homes has been told millions of times.  It simply hasn’t cut through the negative noise. 

Where has that negative noise about manufactured housing originated from?  The sources are varied. That said, there is a money trail in the millions that clearly points to donations by Warren Buffett, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway – parent to Clayton Homes, their sister Berkshire lenders, and a powerhouse at MHI – that have flowed via the Tides nonprofit to groups such as MHAction or Prosperity Now that have in turn attacked manufactured housing operations.  Rephrased, Buffett’s been backing both pro-and-con voices about manufactured homes.  The voices that undermine the industry’s story seem to win the media war routinely. Why?

None of the Berkshire brands or MHI has denied the evidence presented. That leaves the evidence presented unchallenged.  The collage below illustrates the point just made.

 

MHActionLogoWarrenBuffettGeorgeSorosPhotoTidesFoundationLogoDailyBusinessNewManufacturedHomeIndustryMHProsNews

 

Now, against that backdrop, let’s pivot back to Cavco’s November 8, 2018 news release.

 

Stegmayer, Cavco, and the SEC/Shareholder Legal Clouds 

As the numbers of shareholders suits against Cavco Industries continues to grow, an interesting point keeps arising relative to Joe Stegmayer, their former Chairman, President, and CEO. Let’s mention that he was also a former Clayton Homes division president.

Part of the announcement on November 8, 2019 that sent Cavco shares plunging related to Stegmayer was that the multi-year leader of the publicly traded firm (CVCO) would step down into a more supportive, non-executive role.

But several indications from sources previously reported within Cavco, plus more recent hints by George Allen and others in his orbit, suggest that Stegmayer still exercises a leadership role that some believe is more like that of the shadow president than some supportive ‘non-executive’ role.

Quoting from their November 8th press release, “Mr. Stegmayer stepped down from his position as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company after an internal investigation, conducted by independent legal counsel, identified certain violations of Company policy related to securities trading activities conducted by Mr. Stegmayer. The Board’s decision to transition Mr. Stegmayer to a non-executive role allows the Company to retain his deep industry and operational experience.

The Cavco press release further stated that, The Company also announced that it had received a subpoena from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement (“SEC”) requesting certain documents relating to, among other items, trading of the stock of another public company. Subsequent to sending the Company a subpoena, the SEC sent a subpoena for documents and testimony to Joseph Stegmayer, regarding similar issues. The Company has initiated an independent investigation and intends to cooperate fully with the SEC’s investigation.

In a typical ‘all in the company family’ motif, the release said: Joseph Stegmayer, former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, commented that “Dan Urness is a great choice to lead Cavco. He is a strong leader, with the ability to connect with customers, partners and teammates. His institutional knowledge of our Company and significant industry experience will ensure a smooth leadership transition. I look forward to continuing to serve the Company in my new role.”

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIBoardOfDirectorsLogoMHIExecutiveCommittee

The satirical logo is used in part to poke with a lighter touch at a serious topic. As some have framed it, there are white hat companies at MHI, and black hat companies.  Certainly the black hats must find the white hats useful.

Stegmayer has remained Chairman of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), despite the legal flap, its costs to Cavco, and the hit on CVCO’s stock valuation.

 

YahooFinanceCavcoIndustriesCVCO1YearTrendDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Cavco (CVCO) is one of the stocks tracked in our evening/nightly market report, along with a snapshot of headlines, and news that move investors. For Friday’s report, click here.

 

These are questions that may be of interest to shareholder’s plaintiff’s attorneys.

 

Cavco Industries Investigated Anew for Violations of Federal Securities Laws, plus Manufactured Home Industry Stock Updates

 

But there are broader industry questions that ought to be explored, perhaps in concert with Congressional and other state/federal inquiries.

Readers will be reminded that some 5 years ago, Stegmayer was talking on camera about the industry returning to 250,000 shipments.  That video is found in the report in the text/image box above. Stegmayer did say that return to 250,000 could accomplished in a year.  But he clearly suggested that it was doable in the foreseeable future.  What happened to that 250,000 new home shipment aim since then? 

Why is a new manufactured home shipment goal unmentioned by MHI more recently? 

Or ponder the fact that after the embarrassing reply the MHI President and CEO Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison gave to MHProNews on camera that same year – that the industry should grow slowly – the next year, after being privately chastened by Tim Williams, per sources, Jennison said that the industry could return to 500,000 new manufactured home shipments.  We professionally concur that that half-million or more new home production goal is achievable.  Others in the industry believe so too. The points Secretary Carson has cited in various interviews and his speech in New Orleans all point to the great potential of the industry in this affordable housing crisis.

 

MHI CEO Dick Jennison’s Pledge – 500,000 New Manufactured Home Shipments

 

All of which begs the question, how effective has MHI been at representing “all segments of manufactured housing?” 

As the decade de facto post-production association, after decades in that role, has MHI still not figured out what keeps people from buying a manufactured home? Why aren’t they routinely addressing those prospective home buyers concerns?  Lightening rod Frank Rolfe, a well known MHI member, made the point simply.

 

Rolfe and Dave Reynolds effectively doubled down on that recently, when they said the following.

MHI has had two different public relations people, for a combined total of several years now. Do those ‘experts’ in media relations not have a message or method for advancing the acceptance of the industry? Do they not yet have a message that resonates with the millions in the public that would buy what our manufactured home industry offers, if they simply understood it properly?

When AZ Central reports that only 5 congressmen came to see what MHI dubbed “Homes on the Hill,” what was MHI’s public relations effort doing? 

The industry is only at ¼th of the production it was in 1998. Where is MHI’s recovery plan?

 

BloombergShipmentProductionDataManufacturedHousingMHProNews2019-05-16_1057

 

This pro-growth industry-leading trade media will continue to monitor and report on these and other related issues.

SubmitNewsTipsCommentsLettersToEditorMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP or Comments or Letter to Editor in the subject line.

That’s a wrap on this installment of News Through the Lens of Manufactured Homes, and Factory-Built Housing,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP or Comments or Letter to Editor in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Members Point to Positives, Problematic – Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) says, “Get the Facts on Zoning”

Secretary Ben Carson’s, Julian Castro’s Manufactured Housing, “Trailer,” “Mobile Home” Revelations, 2020 Battles Ahead

8 Months of Declining Year-Over-Year HUD Code Manufactured Home Production – When Will Manufactured Housing Institute Act?

 

Positive, Uplifting Third-Party Reports Favor Modern Manufactured Housing, So What’s Going Wrong?

Bonuses, Bonuses! Manufactured Housing Struggles During Affordable Housing Crisis, While Top MHI Staffers Get Bonuses

Joe Stegmayer, George F. Allen, Manufactured Housing Institute Slogans, Slump, Slurs, Solutions

May 14th, 2019 Comments off

 

JoeStegmayerPhotoCavcoIndustriesLogoManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoChairmanGeorgeFAllenPhotoSlogansSlumpSlursSolutionsMHProNews

Photo at left is a still from a YouTube video, posted further below.

The manufactured housing industry is now 7 months into a slump – a downturn. How is that possible, during an affordable housing crisis?  Is it incompetence?  Or something else?

 

While controversial himself in mainstream media reports for a variety of reasons, prominent Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) member Frank Rolfe is on record for calling out prior MHI Chairman Nathan Smith and the association for “hypocrisy.”

FrankRolfeMHIChairmanNathanSmithSSKCommunitiesHypocrisyQuote-MHProNews

Rolfe also accused MHI of failing to promote good news, while failing to defend against bad news.

FrankRolfeMHFundRVHorizonsMobileHomeUniversityDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHomeIndustryResearchReportsDataAnalysisMHProNews595

The phrase ‘the industry’ is often a euphemism for MHI. While the two are obviously distinct, given that MHI is the industry’s umbrella association and larger than its rivals, there are reasons that phrase is used.

 

Despite his own controversies, did Rolfe make valid points in the quotes cited above?

Let’s look.

A recap of Nathan Smith, partner in SSK Communities, and their media and legal woes are linked below. It includes numerous mainstream media video reports, which underscored Rolfe’s first point.

 

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, Manufactured Housing Institute Leader, Profitably Correcting the Record

 

The recent, useful – and largely favorable comments to the manufactured home industry in general – made by HUD Secretary Ben Carson in a speech last week  are of this morning at the date and time shown still not posted on MHI’s website. Why not? It is arguably good news for the industry at large. It was made at MHI’s own event.  Secretary Carson is in charge of the agency that has the primary federal oversight for manufactured housing.

Where is the MHI logic in not having a favorable talk spotlighted on their own website?  Again, this evidence makes a point Rolfe claimed about good news not being shared by MHI.

 

HUDSecBenCarsonMHILogowebsiteManufactuerdHousingInstituteLogo2019-05-14_0617MHProNews

 

This oddity begs questions. For example, is it only Rolfe at MHI who has expressed concerns about MHI? Hardly.

Kenny Lipschutz – whose firm is a MHI/National Communities Council (MHI/NCC) member – said the following in an interview with MHProNews.

 

KennyLipschutzHomeFirstCertifiedCommunitiesMHINCCmemberPuzzlesWhyMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Tom Fath is a partner in his family’s manufactured home community business. The sell new and pre-owned manufactured homes.  Their operations are reportedly doing well. Which makes Fath’s comments all the more striking.

 

TomFathCreatedAnIndustryUnderAssaultQuoteWeSucceedWhenCustomersAreHappyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

This comment was a response to a critique of MHI and their ‘advertorial’ campaign. Fath was arguing that facts and consumer benefits should be stressed, rather than claims that actually undermined the industry’s credibility.

 

Is Fath alone? No.

Current and former MHI members have privately and publicly called out the trade group for being ineffective, for favoritism, for being an oligarchy, or of de facto working to consolidate the industry.

In 2017, state communities associations broke from MHI, saying the planned to form their own trade organization. They have since done so. Their founder explained their break from MHI as follows.

NealTHaneyNAMHCOWhyBreakawayfromManfuacturedHousingInstituteMHI

 

So, there are significant examples of MHI members – past and present – plus other industry business leaders – that have in word and deed voiced published concerns about the state of the industry in general, and often named MHI in particular.

 

 

One More Level

MHI’s current and 2 prior executive committee members, have all faced various troubling legal or problematic business practice allegations.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIBoardOfDirectorsLogoMHIExecutiveCommittee

Satirical logo by MHProNews, provided under fair use guidelines.

 

George F. Allen, along with Spencer Roane and Tom Lackey of SECO have had their own mainstream media woes.

 

TylerJettChatanoogaTimesFreePressManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Allen and Roane have ‘taught’ selling contract for title at SECO or elsewhere, a practice that the New York Attorney General’s office and others have taken action against. https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/local/story/2018/may/26/industry-members-decline-take-sides-rossville/471775/

 

Allen has been an MHI critic in the past, as these pull quotes from his website remind industry professionals.

ManufacturedHousingIndustryMonopoly-Oligarchy-GeorgeAllen-PostedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews-

George F.  Allen, has a modest following today, which once used to be a larger following. Once Allen was re-embraced by MHI’s leaders = purportedly to be a surrogate for them to blunt growing industry concerns and criticisms = Allen has muted his prior blasts, and has arguably turned instead at sliming MHI’s critics. 

 

But Allen, who was persona non grata just a few years ago at MHI, has more recently cozied up to and has been re-embraced by the Arlington, VA based association. Joe Stegmayer appeared again at Allen’s annual event in 2018.

 

 

Joe Stegmayer – as MHI’s Chairman – lends to the under-informed a certain credibility to Allen.  Allen in turn has purportedly attacked privately and publicly this publication for holding the industry’s power players to account. But instead of accepting the opportunity to disprove or debate the issues raised, Allen has resorted to slurs and a call to boycott MHProNews.

Allen’s call for a boycott is noteworthy, because it can be an element in antitrust law.  Allen has also used demonstrably flawed claims in a purported effort to slime the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), which is trying to address underlying issues, and thereby help the industry return to growth. Attacking a trade group that is honestly and honorably seeking growth during an affordable housing crisis and while the industry is in a slump ought to be common sense.  Thus, Allen’s attacks on MHARR merits its own scrutiny. See that report, via the hot-linked text/image box linked below.  But once more, it also sparks further questions and concerns.

 

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

 

There are evidence-based examples of how MHI leaders have directly and indirectly rewarded Allen and SECO, which he is associated with.

Now MH Village’s co-president, Darren Krolewski – who previously praised MHProNews for taking on the tougher issues – more recently has launched their own trade publication, which is of course their right.

DarrenKrolewskiPraisingMHProNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

MHVillage’s Krolewski dubbed their new publication MHInsider, the first three letters of which spell MHI. They are in fact a prominent supporter of MHI. They have given Allen and SECO a lift via their own platform. Attempt to find an article in MHInsider that is critical of MHI or Clayton Homes. There are better odds of winning the lottery than finding a critique of any MHI or Berkshire Hathaway MH industry company leader, or of those who are the ‘big boys’ at the Arlington, VA based trade group.

Equity LifeStyle Properties (ELS) Howard Walker arguably had a different view on what should be done about good and bad news than what MHInsider- or the flip-flopping George F.(F?) Allen – has taken. The late Walker, JD and longtime vice chairman and a right hand man to Sam Zell, ELS’ chairman, said this.

HowardWalkerPhotoELSViceChairmanManufacturedHomeCOmmunitiesManufacturedHousingInstituteExecCommitteeMemberQuoteTransparencyMHProNews

Thoughtful words, worth pondering. See the story, linked here.

 

While it was before the more recent fact checks, it was after other examples of concerns and issues being raised by MHProNews not found elsewhere in the industry’s trade media. So not unlike the prior comment of praise by Krolewski, Walker said the following for publication.

HowardWalkerJDELSViceChairmanPhotoManufacturedHouisngInstituteMHIExecuitiveCommitteeBoardMemberDailyBUisnessNewsMHProNews

The words of the late Howard Walker, JD, longtime ELS Vice Chairman, shared for publication with MHProNews.

 

MHProNews has previously cited the need for good business ethics, quoting the following as an example.

HumanitiesValueBuisnessCriticismDissentWhenGoingAlongGetAlongWhereWhistleblowersDiscouragedBadThingsHappenBusinssesImplodeMarthaCNussbaumPhotoQuote

Design by MHProNews.

 

This publication has also promoted the notion of getting to the root issues of the industry’s challenges, citing Zig Ziglar as follows.

ProblemSolvingZigZiglarFirstStepRecognizetheProblemExistsNextIsProblemOurResponsiblityProblemSolvingVeryImportantDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

When the industry hit the start of its now 7-month slump, what have MHI’s leaders offered? Let’s look at some examples of ‘slogans vs. solutions.’

Last fall, when the corporate leaders of the trade group arguably knew that the downturn was underway, MHI produced a video promoting the association. The stills that follow are from that video and are provided under fair use guidelines for media.

 

MHIMembersChangingPerceptionOfManufacturedHousingMHILogoClaytonHomesLogoBerkshireHathawayLogoMHProNews

LeveragingCreationNewClassManufacturedHomesMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

The first slogan was a claim of changing the perception of the industry.  If it was for the better, then why aren’t sales growing?

The next MHI claims is one of momentum.  This was clearly not true, unless they meant momentum in reverse?  Instead, what the ‘new class of homes’ project arguably has done is divert lending that ought to be going to all manufactured homes under the Housing and Economic Recovery Act (HERA) of 2008 away from all manufactured homes, to only a few ‘select’ homes.  Here’s how MHARR President and CEO, Mark Weiss, JD, phrased it.

MarkWeissDTSQuoteManufacturedHousingAssocRegulatoryReformMHARRDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

MHI also claimed in their video to be promoting the industry. That may be true in a technical, fig leaf, or posturing sort of sense. But the lack of growth in manufactured housing shipments itself undermines the credibility of the Arlington, VA based trade group’s claim.

Nevertheless, to prove their point, MHI cited statistics that were wildly arguably misleading at best, or demonstrably deceptive at worst.

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteLogoMHIVideoStillMHIPromotionalClaims

MHARRshipmentProductionMarch2019ManufacturedHousingReportMHProNews

While MHI in their monthly shipment report doesn’t deny the decline, neither are they addressing the underlying causes, nor have they proposed a remedy via their messages to the industry. Why not?

 

When, MHProNews called out the deception, and offered MHI and their leaders an opportunity to respond, MHI hired an outside attorney who issued a series of letter threatening this publication and specifically mentioned our showing these still video images. Some of the claims that MHI’s outside attorney made are dealt with in a report linked below.

 

Lanham Act, Monopolistic Housing Institute, err, Manufactured Housing Institute, Legal Bullies, and You

 

So instead of offering solutions, MHI has offered slogans. Instead of addressing legitimate concerns, they have threatened this publication that their own leaders have previously praised as being pro-industry.  Perhaps more to the point, as the quote below reveals, their leaders ought to know that they have to address bad news, as Rolfe suggested in the quote cited above.  If they know they should, but fail to do so, what does that say about the trade group?  What concerns does that raise?

TimWilliams21stMortgageCEOthenMHIChairmanGoodArgumentsRefuteEveryStatisticsRespondEveryStoryPBSDIckErnstDailyBusinessNewsmHPronews

 

Such facts puts MHI in an awkward spot, perhaps because MHProNews has cited investor relations reports by publicly trade MHI member companies that also point out the obvious truth that the industry is underperforming.

3ErasMobileHomesManufacturedHomesManufacturedHousingImprovementActEraSkylineChampionShipmentProductionGraphicMHProNews

In 1998, manufactured homes (MH) outsold RVs by some 3 to 2. In 2017, RVs outsold MHs by some 5 to 1. RVs recovered far more quickly from 2008. The facts raise questions. One, is the effectiveness of MHI as the post-production or ‘umbrella’ association in the country. The other question is more sobering. Has Buffett-Berkshire “Moat” strategies kept manufactured home production at historically low levels to allow a few big boy brands to consolidate others at a discounted ‘value’ by MHI insiders?

 

MHLivingNews, NAMHCO, the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform for years, even a former MHI president on his exit message have raised concerns about the failures of MHI.

FormerManufacturedHousingInstitutePresidentChrisStinebertManufacturedHomeOwnersUrbanInstituteYouMHLivingNews

https://www.manufacturedhomelivingnews.com/former-manufactured-housing-institute-president-manufactured-home-owners-urban-institute-and-you/

 

What has MHI done in a practical way to address the issues? At their recent Congress and Expo, they offered this slogan – “Let’s Keep Building.”

Slogans coupled with an action plan are fine. But where is MHI’s action plan? After all, they claim themselves to represent the interests of all segments of the industry, per the following from their website this morning. The commentary in the blue boxes are by MHProNews.

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoPhotoOnlyTradeOrganizationrepresentingallsegmentsfactorybuilthousing2019-05-14_0808

 

It should be noted that not all in the industry are sliding.  The article below is but one example of a firm that is bucking the trend.  That clearly implies that others can too.

 

 

Which begs the question, what the devil is going in with MHI’s so-called leadership?  What are the ‘powers that be’ behind MHI actually doing?

 

 

What’s Going On?

The largest corporate force behind MHI are the Warren Buffett led Berkshire Hathaway owned brands. A survey of troubling mainstream media reports about their behavior is linked below.

 

Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance – Investor Lessons Learned

 

Before several of these episodes occurred, became known, or were coming into focus, Clayton, 21st, and MHI supported the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act. In hindsight, was the entire bill a ruse? A head fake designed to consolidate the industry into ever fewer hands?

 

That’s what a more detailed report, fact-checks, and analysis linked below examines.

 

Rope-a-Dope – Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act, Mom, Dad, & You

 

 

There are already several federal investigations reportedly underway with respect to Clayton Homes, and their related lenders.  Former Clayton division president Joe Stegmayer, Cavco Industries are under an SEC subpoena, to name but a few of the publicly known federal investigations.

 

 

But sources tell MHProNews, that other investigations – federal and others – are also underway.

The fact-checks by MHLivingNews of the recent Last Week Tonight with John Oliver revealed that each firm the satirical, sharp hit on “Mobile Homes” made was on a MHI member connected firm.

 

Warren Buffett has been documented to have financially supported via so-called ‘dark money’ channels the organizations that attacked his own brands, and MHI firms.

 

 

It is with that backdrop that publisher L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach takes a deeper dive into what in hindsight was arguably the true goal of the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act. Tony Kovach raises the questions, have more than just antitrust laws been broken? Are possible fraud and RICO concerns valid?

That ‘deeper dive’ report is linked here.

It is far more pleasant being a cheer leader when one has something honest and honorable to cheer. But to fail to call out real problems is to betray readers who are looking for solutions, not slogans, slurs, slimes, or dodges.

SnearMudThrowingTacticsUsedWorkToDuckDodgeDebatePixabayMastheadCommentaryMHPronews

While surrogate writers for the powers that be – like Allen – purportedly use diversionary, smear or slime tactics vs. engaging in an actual – robust discussion or debate – MHProNews continues to follow the evidence, follow the money, and does fact checks to uncover what the underlying issues actually point toward.

 

DuckDodgeDismissDistractDetractDefameFromIssueTacticsByThoseWithNoGoodAnswersMHProNews-768x609

RickRobinsonSrVPGenCounselManufacturedHousingInstituteHUDSecBenCarsonMHILogoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Robinson is a good speaker, good writer and likeable person, says MHProNews publisher, L. A. “Tony” Kovach. The questions that they duck and dodge will only continue until they are properly addressed in a transparent way, he opines.

LATonyKovachHenryFordQuotesPrettyPicturesAchieveGoalsDailyBusinessNewsProNews

Therefore, while Joe Stegmayer and George F. (F?) Allen are playing footsie – or MHInsider and the bulk of the others in the manufactured home industry’s trade media other than MHLivingNews or MHProNews ignore the vexing issues – or slime those such as MHARR for raising logical concerns and for offering solutions – our pro-growth platforms will continue to promote the good news about manufactured housing, while holding to account those who are behaving in problematic ways.

That’s today’s third look at “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Manufactured Home Community Case Study, UMH Properties, Lessons for Independent Community Owners, Investors

 

MHARR Calls on HUD Secretary to End Discriminatory And Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes

George F. Allen’s Unity Call for MHI, MHARR, and National Association of Manufactured Housing Community Owners (NAMHCO) Examined

May 4th, 2019 Comments off

 

GeorgeFAllenCowardlyLionUnityCallMHIlogoMHARRlogoNAMHCOLogoManufacturedHousingMHProNews

What’s the largest national trade association in manufactured housing? As longtime former-member George F. Allen should know, it is the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI), based in Arlington, VA. They have for years claimed that “MHI is the only national trade organization representing all segments of the factory-built housing industry.” – as prior, repeated MHI critic Allen should know.

 

But what is Allen’s stance about MHI or other industry trade groups now?

When it comes to which trade association should carry the burden of responsibility for the currently troubled state of the manufactured home industry, which trade group should that be?

Based on MHI’s own claim, it should be obvious. Based on periodic attacks on MHI from Allen for years, it ought to be clear to him too.  As the large, umbrella trade group, it is logically MHI.

Thus, for George Allen to point his barbs at anyone other than the source of the problems, begs the question.  What is Allen’s motivation?

Before diving into the details, let’s note as an executive summary that Allen has recently:

  • directed attention away from the obviously responsible source, i.e.: MHI and their masters.
  • Why is Allen merely posturing or talking about stuff like John Oliver’s harmful impact on MHVille via the problematic “Mobile Homes” video?
  • What is Allen doing to correct sliding industry trends, besides holding meetings, shilling for others, or selling literature that lines his own pockets?
  • Why would Allen try to undermine someone and their organization that is laying the foundation for DOING something positive, that aims to return the industry to growth?
  • Why has Allen attacked a pro-industry party that is not paid for their effort to try to help independent communities, retailers, and others to grow the industry, instead of shrinking the industry. Shouldn’t that spark concern from Allen’s still significant, but nevertheless dwindling fan-base among independently owned communities?

That’s what this report, fact-check, and analysis will unpack. As part of this executive summary, let’s note there will be new quotes for thousands of readers from:

  • Kevin Clayton
  • Joe Stegmayer

Plus an in-context review of others from industry leaders that include:

  • Nathan Smith, SSK Communities
  • Tim Williams/21st

These are among those that will be quoted and cited from this report.  Several new quotes, plus a review of past ones that are relevant, will be included in this exclusive in-depth professional’s-focused dive into the murky world of manufactured housing.

While Allen’s role is arguably that of a pawn, it is nevertheless useful in understanding the broader landscape of how the game is played in manufactured housing today.

We’ll begin this fact-check and analysis of Allen’s recent barbs with some background that may be new to some, but useful to all.  Then, we will proceed to spotlight fresh insights into the drop in manufactured housing shipments, and other efforts that seemingly aim to consolidating more of the industry into ever fewer hands.

 

George F. Allen Ought to Know…

This and other third party images are provided under fair use guidelines for media. It should be noted that AFA, the source of this photo, is arguably another MHI surrogate.

Given that Allen once understood that it was MHI’s bailiwick to focus on retail, community, and other post-production issues, who is it that Allen took aim at in a new critique on his “Community-Investor” “EducateMHC” page? Logically, it should have been MHI. But no, please don’t expect such logic from the retired Colonel Allen.

Let’s help Allen discern – but more important, give evidence-based and logical guidance to any of his readers – that the Indianapolis-based retiree has sadly apparently misinformed his readers about or any other industry professionals who trip across him.

Let’s likewise see what Allen, his buddies, and masters reveal in what follows, in their own words.

 

 

What MHI Leaders Have Previously Admitted

MHProNews begins by taking a step back from Allen and looking at what MHI’s own leaders have publicly admitted, often on camera.

Nathan Smith, MHI’s prior chairman and SSK Communities partner admits that the industry – i.e., MHI – had often ‘failed to be proactive.’ Smith also said that he wants all the (independent) communities for himself, with a great laugh. Is that funny to any independent community owners who were underpaid for the true intrinsic value of their properties?

 

 

Given Smith’s own comments and the public reputation of his firm, does Allen take aim at the SSK partner’s operation and its impact on the industry’s image?

Not that we’ve seen lately. Yet the Better Business Bureau (BBB) rated SSK Communities an ‘F’ – and SSK was part of video clip shown by John Oliver video “Mobile Homes.”  Allen postured in an email to his followers that he is concerned about this issue. ICYMI, re: former MHI chairman Nathan Smith led SKK Communities “F” rating, the screen capture was taken previously, but it was double checked on 5.3.2019 and remains the same as of 10:05 EM ET.

 

JohnOliverHBOLastWeekTonightMobileHomesSSKCommunitiesNathanSmithClassActionLawSuitMobileManufacturedHomeMHProNews

 

Smith and SSK Communities gets a silent pass from Allen on his blog since March 3, 2013, when under the headline, “Circling the Drain,” Allen talked about the tepid turnout for an MHI meeting, lamented Don Glisson, Jr.’s surprise departure at that time as MHI chairman, and flatly noted Nathan Smith at SSK was the new chairman.  But where was – or is – the public accountability-check by Allen of Smith? Per sources in the Allen camp, he does comment about Smith and SSK in dark terms, but only to what ‘George’ refers to as his ‘intimates.’

Ouch, that’s not a pretty picture, by let’s move on from that George F (F?) Allen terminology. We’ll note in passing this mainstream media account of one of several such reports about Smith led-SSK.  Note that this video was during Smith’s tenure as MHI chairman.  What image of the Arlington, VA based trade group does this mainstream news video present? Where was Allen’s courage on this issue? Hmmm?

 

 

Tim Williams – another former MHI chairman, and still president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway owned 21st Mortgage Corporation – admitted at an MHI session that ‘the horse has left the barn’ on MHI’s miss of the SAFE Act. Longer-time industry pros recall that the SAFE Act was later rolled into Dodd-Frank. None of those problematic steps were stopped by MHI, nor their ultimate power source in Omaha, NE.

How often must the industry allow MHI watch the ‘horse to leave the barn,’ or to have the scores of industry firms and efforts fail, before more bloggers and publishers join in and hold those responsible, accountable?

MHI President Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison admitted on stage and on camera the failures by MHI ‘at times’ too, while giving praise for his good, dear friend L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach and MHProNews, which he called a “great publication.”

 

 

Where is Allen’s equivalent to these on-point facts and quoted comments? To use military phrasing Allen should know, it was entirely MIA. Missing in action.

Given that Allen was at some of those same meetings, he has or should have seen those same videos, heard the same comments, and witnessed many of those points that MHProNews has.  So who does Allen go after on April 30th, 2019? MHI? Nathan Smith? Berkshire Hathaway brands, including the one led by Tim Williams?

No.

Instead, Allen takes aim at the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR).

  • Yet MHARR had no role at all in the Oliver video.
  • Nor is MHARR responsible for post-production issues, that’s supposed to be part of MHI’s claim to fame.

 

MHARR has stated clearly for years about their role: MHARR is a Washington, D.C.-based national trade association representing the views and interests of independent producers of federally-regulated manufactured housing.” That’s also near the end of the same column from MHARR President and CEO, Mark Weiss, JD, that Allen oddly took issue with. Allen knows it, but ignores that point.  It is but one of many examples of purported intellectual dishonesty – or gross negligence – by Allen, if he claims to be a seriously dispassionate reporter of facts.

Rephrased, MHARR isn’t the post-production or umbrella association.  Rather, that is MHI – by MHI’s own claims.

So who is responsible for what Allen called in his recent post the “HUD-Code manufactured housing industry for its’ perennial lethargy, and leaderlessness…” – logically, it is MHI, not MHARR.

One could stop there, because what follows are details.  But those details reveal much about Allen and his purported string-pullers.  That in turn matters to hundreds of independent manufactured home communities who still follow him, and thousands of others who may not even know Allen is in the industry too.

Allen has gone from an MHI outsider, to more recently being embraced by the very people who previously rejected him.  That makes the intellectually curious ask, why?  What changed? Who gets what? Who benefits?

 

MHI’s Leaders, and What Allen’s Missing and/or Hiding?

Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison ‘led’ MHI, or former chairmen Tim Williams and Nathan Smith have at times themselves admitted that MHI has failed. So, what’s up with Allen’s arguably flawed premise and thinking in going after MHARR on his blog?  Where was his logic?

Let’s be clear.  Allen has the 1st Amendment right to go after whomever he will, within legal and moral norms.  If he wants to dispute MHARR’s reasoning, or MHProNews, or anyone else – and does so honorably, have at it.  Let’s also note the obvious.  MHARR is a banner advertiser here. That’s obvious.  But what is not obvious to some is what Allen is getting from MHI and what MHI award-winner Marty Lavin has called ‘big boy’ companies. This fisking of Allen’s fisk is our idea, no one else’s. That said, let’s press on.

 

FiskFiskingDefinitionManufacturedHssuingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

So there are several obvious inquiries that a keen mind should ponder. Why is Allen diverting attention from the obviously more responsible party(ies), while focusing on the trade association that is trying to fix what is going wrong in MHVille?

  • What is driving Allen’s attack on MHARR?
  • Are his barbs accurate or not?
  • Let’s examine those topics.  Because they are relevant to virtually all in the industry.

Some of Allen’s comments and logic will be reviewed further below, but first, this necessary and useful segue.  As retail and community shipments have been dropping for months, Allen has demonstrably diverted attention away from the evidence that follows.  BTW, and ICYMI, one of our recent reports on dropping sales in #1 Texas, or other regional states linked here, can be accessed later from the text-image box below. We’ll do a report early next week on the full national data on the troubling decline in new manufactured home shipment and production trends.

 

Warning – Number 1 Manufactured Housing State, Texas – Reports Month Over Month Rise, Year over Year Shipment Decline Continues

 

“That G-d D-mned George Allen”

Among the tips from Allen’s circle to MHProNews came one yesterday while this article was being prepared for publication.  Several comments were made by that source from Allen’s circle.  That source has reportedly made nice with Allen, but he literally cursed Allen for what he is doing to communities.  Per that longtime Allen-follower and prior fan, the blogger and now former community owner Allen is giving “MHI cover” – while “slurring MHARR.”

In order to double-check various claims made by that source, prior tips and research had to be reviewed by MHProNews.  That caused a delay from yesterday to today for publishing this report, while additional research was conducted.  It has led to several valuable, compelling insights.

 

SubmitNewsTipsCommentsLettersToEditorMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

 

Among the prior tips on Allen from other members of his circle were claims that he derailed an attempt to organize certain midwestern manufactured home community owners and independents from forming a new trade group.  The plan was to form a new post-production association that would do what MHI claims to do.

Why would Allen – who claims to care about the interests of independent communities – sideline efforts to help independently owned community operators?  Who benefits from that derailment?

Last year, MHProNews ran an article at the link below.

 

Cavco’s Joe Stegmayer, MHI Chairman, George Allen-COBA7, Collusion, Coverup, and Allegations of Selling Out

Our publisher – L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach – at that time provided Allen and his ally, Spencer Roane, with an opportunity to respond.  That’s a norm for this trade platform, unlike Allen’s arguably one-sided blog.  Here on MHProNews a chance to reply in public exists. This screen capture documents the quote text that follows.

 

EmailGeorgeFAllenSpencerRoane2019-05-04_0334Sept52018ManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

YouMHProNewsSeemToHaveConceptualIQThatIsMoreImportantThanSpellingAbilityQuote

Many of these quotes are from MHI insiders.

What follows is the text of that message.  For new readers here, note that MHProNews often uses bold and brown text to highlight a direct quote, which is the case herein below. Typos are in the original.  The quote at the left in blue, from an MHI member and periodic source, is a wink and a nod to that member’s point.

George and Spencer,

First, unlike some others n MHVille, we offer the opportunity to respond. In this case, it’s to the first yellow highlighted article, linked further below, which mentions you, Spencer, MHI and JoeS. You can clarify, confirm, or whatever you deem fitting on that topic. Joe isn’t among the BCCs, but a few of your followers, no one from MHARR, and five MHI members are.

The NDA questions. We have sources that tell us that MHI has made a “liberal” (common) use of NDAs. Please type your replies beneath each question. They can be as short or long as you wish. Supporting documentation is welcome and encouraged.


1) Have you at any time been asked to sign an NDA with MHI? 

 

2) Have you at any time been asked to sign an NDA with MHI members in the past 4 years? 

 

3) How do you explain or justify your apparent in writing flip-flops on what Marty Lavin has called “the Big Boys” – the powers that be behind MHI?

 

4) By working for those MHI/big boys each of you two with various apparent rewards, cross promotions, and compensation, haven’t you in fact sold out the independents who make up the bulk of your followers?

 

Your normal prompt reply is valued.  Thank you.  Reminder, see the first yellow highlighted article, linked further below.

 

Tony

 

As a disclosure, this writer has access to our publisher’s email, and he does this writer’s email too.

There was no response from this message by Kovach to Allen, although Allen is known to engage in several back-and-forth message exchanges with our publisher.  While it is not proof that Allen has sold out to MHI, his lack of reply is interesting.  It certainly opens the door to reasonably wonder, is Allen acting as a compensated surrogate for MHI and/or some larger firms that are MHI members?

A separate message was also sent by Tony Kovach to MHI’s outside attorney as well as MHI’s senior leadership. See the screen capture below.  It pointedly asked if George F. Allen was working on MHI’s behalf as a surrogate.

 

EmailJohnGreinerGraydonLawMHIElectedAppointedLeadershipJan2019KevinClaytonJoeStegmayerTimWilliamsNathanSmith

 

No denials or confirmations came from those leaders, but several other interesting replies came back from those in the BCCs, which included Allen followers.

That message included the following, as part of a longer message thread. As is common on MHProNews, we’ve turned the quoted text brown and bold, to highlight it for publication.

 

-ITS_followerPersonDoctrineMovementIdeaWikiDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

Allen-ite.

But otherwise this section of that message is quoted as sent to George Allen, with senior MHI leaders openly copied, and several state association executives, plus Allen-ites among those BCC’d.  The typos are in the original.

Do you not understand how you praised MHI, after you had publicly blasted or questioned them? Then you kissed up when you CC’d Joe Stegmayer? Then flip-flopped again, from your own blog?  See link above to refresh your memory. As a reminder, see the mainstream story below, to refresh your thinking and recall more.

https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/local/story/2018/may/26/industry-members-decline-take-sides-rossville/471775/

People are busy, but hindsight brings amazing clarity at times.

Frank Rolfe got MHAction-ed. MHI got their treatment too. In hindsight, perhaps it was a mistake that we tipped off MHI that protests were coming. MHAction was coy, because they just switched locations, and dates, but they still did protest – didn’t they?

How do you think NMHOA, or MHAction would view your, Spencer Roxane’s, or SECO’s view of defending Tom Lackey, after all those media reports?”

At that time of that emailed comment, it was already known that MHAction was getting funding from the Tides Foundation, which in turn was funded by the NoVo Foundation, who’s main donor was Warren Buffett.  The article linked below was published on 2018/10/19.

 

 

As a relevant side note, a Rolfe confident told MHProNews that he believes that some of the MHAction rank-and-file protest members are mentally unbalanced. Rolfe would not formally confirm or deny that he was fearful during some encounters with MHAction members. That said, Rolfe has previously stated that he’s not easily scared. Those are legally significant matters, as MHI’s attorney’s and the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis ‘big boys’ likely understand.

While specific levels of coordination between some of those MHAction types and the axis are not entirely clear. But what is clear is that Buffett’s money can be traced to both sides of several issues that impact manufactured housing.  At a minimum that raises concerns and the possibility of collusion, which could involve antitrust, RICO, or possibly other federal laws.

In a message thread from George Allen’s email to several HUD Code manufactured home producers dated January 17, 2019 at 7:49 AM, was sent to Allen’s email list.

Cc: gfa7156 <gfa7156@aol.com>
Sent: Thu, Jan 17, 2019 7:49 am

Bob Bender at Commodore Homes sent this reply to an email from Allen that asked this question:

Reason(s) for Slippage in Volume of New HUD-Code Homes being shipped this past Fall?” Let’s note, as a ‘wheat and chaff’ point that the question by Allen is a valid one, especially now, when the industry is into its 7 month of declining new home shipments, a matter of concern to most independents  and investors. Here’s what Commodore’s Bender said in reply.

Bob Bender, Commodore Homes.

George – we have not seen any retraction in our HUD business. I haven’t seen any inventory changes and the overall retail space looks solid.

Certainly there could be some FEMA differences comparing industry year-to-year volume which I know you follow. 

Bob Bender

Sent from Phone

 

Note that Joe Stegmayer, then and now MHI’s chairman, replied to this inquiry by Allen too.

It will be recalled that this occurred weeks after Stegmayer stepped down from his role as president, CEO and chairman at Cavco Industries, following the SEC subpoena.  The most recent update on that Cavco drama, is linked here.  Given that, doesn’t Stegmayer’s tone sound as if he still carried a lot of weight at Cavco?  And doesn’t Stegmayer sound chummy with Allen – for whom MHI’s chairman addressed Allen’s ‘roundtable’ meeting – which gives Allen financial compensation?  Hold those thoughts, because it is relevant for Allen’s purported role as a compensated/rewarded MHI surrogate.

Here was the ‘meat’ of Stegmayer’s reply to Allen, which was CC’d to others, some of whom provided this as a news tip to MHProNews. The typos are in the original.

 

Joe_Stegmayer_Cavco_credit_MHProNews

Joe Stegmayer, MHI Chairman, former Cavco Chairman, president and CEO.

George 

Believe inventories of retailers climbed rather suddenly to above comfort levels. Now being adjusted. 

Our view is consistent with Clayton’s that consumer traffic is solid. would add that it appears that credit availability has improved somewhat. 

Another plus: The inventory of all existing homes for sale is near historically low levels.

Absent national economic calamities we are optimistic.”

 

The “we” from Stegmayer clearly implies Cavco.  But notice that Stegmayer, a former Clayton Homes division president, referenced a reply from Kevin Clayton.  The meat of that statement by Clayton, which was also forwarded to MHProNews as a tip, read as follows.

Kevin Clayton told Allen the following, in a message sent:  Wed, Jan 16, 2019 8:19 am. The typo by Kevin is in the original.

 

sitting-with-si-robertson-duck-dynasty-kevin-clayton-homes-posted-daily-business-news-mhpronews-com-

Hindsight can be 20/20. Why wasn’t the Clayton TV and video campaign with Duck Dynasty more successful? Kevin Clayton at right.

Retail inventory correction

Look at RV industry….it is even more severe for them. 

Good news is retail activity remains healthy to work through it.  That’s just one opinion \ view.   

Kevin Clayton

 

In fairness and to be objective, there are non-MHI sources that have said similarly as Clayton did above.  Namely, that retailers over-ordered during periods of long factory backlogs last year.

But doesn’t that dodge several questions? Why isn’t retail as hot now as it was a year ago? FEMA can only account for a small part of that lighter level of factory orders. During an affordable housing crisis, why aren’t sales surging with or without FEMA orders? Consider again Cavco’s Stegmayer’s statement, which makes an apt point.

Another plus: The inventory of all existing homes for sale is near historically low levels.

Absent national economic calamities we are optimistic.”

 

As another segue, that from Stegmayer ought to be a key for the manufactured home industry, its investors, and public/private/media investigators.  If you read what he said carefully, note that logically Stegmayer was on both sides of the fence?  But given the affordable housing crisis, and how high the demand is for conventional/existing housing, he is debatably correct in making a point MHProNews has made for years.  I.e.: why aren’t HUD Code manufactured home sales soaring?

 

3ErasMobileHomesManufacturedHomesManufacturedHousingImprovementActEraSkylineChampionShipmentProductionGraphicMHProNews

In 1998, manufactured homes (MH) outsold RVs by some 3 to 2. In 2017, RVs outsold MHs by some 5 to 1. RVs recovered far more quickly from 2008. The facts raise questions. One, is the effectiveness of MHI as the post-production or ‘umbrella’ association in the country. The other question is more sobering. Has Buffett-Berkshire “Moat” strategies kept manufactured home production at historically low levels to allow a few big boy brands to consolidate others at a discounted ‘value’ by MHI insiders?

 

But Allen did not follow that logic, at least not with his audience.

That once more begs several questions.  Wasn’t Allen persona non grata at MHI, just a few years ago?  Was Allen brought back into the ‘MHInsider circle’ – to borrow Darren Krolewski’s publication phrase – to act as a periodic attack dog?  A compensated and rewarded surrogate for MHI and the ‘big boys?’

Doesn’t that then imply that Allen is selling out his core followers, who are the independents ‘mom and pop’ and somewhat larger community owners? Indeed, people like Nathan Smith, Paul Bradley with ROC USA, and others find Allen and his meetings useful as funnels for acquisitions.

Here’s another one of Allen’s reader’s comments, which was likewise forwarded to MHProNews. It was sent in connection with the Bender-Stegmayer-Clayton quotes just noted.  Note these comments from Allen’s reader’s list reportedly includes attorneys and some more sophisticated individuals, even if they don’t trust him. The typo is in the original, and this is part of a longer message.  The ‘they’ in the message below means the industry’s ‘powers that be,’ including Clayton and Cavco. The meat of that news tip sent to MHProNews read as follows:

 

Allen is too busy posturing to understand it. 

It all begs the key questions:

Why are sales low during an affordable housing crisis?

If retail traffic is good, why are sales low? 

The RV industry is an excuse I heard weeks ago, ditto automotive. The reasons? Because there isn’t an affordable RV Crisis. 

They’ve spent dollars promoting, which imho are head fakes. But objectively, There are three broad options.

1) They really don’t know how to convince and connect with the shoppers/buyers.

2) They do know, but aren’t using the best methods. 

3) Some combo of the above. 

Do you see an alternative to those three?

Recall the video. Clayton said Buffet ok with them losing money for 5 years, if the moat grows.

Head fakes are enough to soothe the GFAs, who are peddling snake oil anyway.”

 

Notice that the writer put GFA (George F Allen) in the plural.  Meaning, not only Allen, but other surrogate publishers for MHI, which arguably includes the MHVillage sister publication, the lightly read MHInsider, plus others.

Allen – along with his sidekick and ally, Spencer Roane – were given opportunities to comment on several such in January, and more recently.

In a message last week to MHProNews, Allen-ite Roane uncharacteristically distanced himself from Allen, while both dissing and praising Tony Kovach.  Allen dodged these questions, but Roane’s message to MHProNews included the following. The hot link below to the Jacksonville newspaper is edited in, so that readers who have not yet read that Jacksonville reference can get the full meaning of Roane’s comments.

 

SpencerRoanePentagonPropertiesCreditsPostedDailyBusinessNewsResearchDataReportsMHProNews“…The Jacksonville newspaper post is about the need for affordable housing.  Hard to argue w/ that.  The only fact-checking appears to be Kovach’s, and that involves MHI membership and Buffet affiliations.  So what?  Other than sharing the interest of many in the industry about overly aggressive community owners/managers, none of this has anything to do w/ me.

Regards, Spencer Roane

 

Unpacking Allen, Roane, Kevin Clayton, and Joe Stegmayer Comments

We’ll begin by noting anew that de facto, Roane both praised and dissed Tony Kovach in the same message, quoted above.  Roane is no public fan of Tony’s. But Roane made several interesting points. Among them are concerns about “overly aggressive community owners/managers” and the links between “MHI membership and Buffet affiliations.” Indeed, MHProNews has heard from such concerns from the community sector’s ‘white hats’ too.

But what Roane didn’t mention was the MHAction activist tie-in to Buffett’s dark money channel funding.

That revelation from the final quarter of last year began to cast a new light on several developments in manufactured housing in recent years. ‘Buffett bucks’ are apparently funding both pro-and-con forces on various issues that face manufactured housing independents.  To the degree that MHI is aware of this, that could place them in a severe conflict-of-interest and other legal problems. Given that their outside attorney has told MHProNews that they monitor what we publish, it could lead to serious issues for MHI, and possibly member companies. ICYMI, see the linked text-image box below.

 

Lanham Act, Monopolistic Housing Institute, err, Manufactured Housing Institute, Legal Bullies, and You

 

The emailed analysis from an Allen-reader (not a devotee, but one who is in his circle) – references the video interview with Kevin Clayton, posted on the link here.

 

To Understand MHVille Today, One Must Understand the Kevin Clayton Video Interview

KevinClaytonVideoInterviewHowDidWarrenLearnTheseMoatBuildingstrategiesMHIBehavioralExperts

While the above is satirical, it does reflect what Clayton purportedly communicated, see the nearly one hour long video at this link here.

Any investor, investigator or longer-term industry professional who has not carefully digested that video interview with Kevin Clayton and related analysis linked from this column, just can’t possibly grasp manufactured housing’s actual dynamics.

For example, Clayton mentions in that video their use of nonprofits – here think MHI, MHAction, Prosperity Now, Center for Public Integrity (CPI), and others – as part of his discussion of the broader Buffett/Berkshire Moat and related business philosophy and practices.

With the revelations that MHAction, the Urban Institute, CPI or others were given Buffett-Berkshire bucks, it sheds a new clarity on how the game is played, and how the system is arguably rigged.

Rephrased, it can’t be stressed enough that manufactured housing professionals have arguably been duped numerous times by the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis.

Consider as an obvious and public example this point. Buffett supported former president Barack Obama and Secretary Hillary Clinton, who pledged no changes to Dodd-Frank. Meanwhile MHI under Nathan Smith and Tim Williams’ leadership was promoting a bill – the Preserving Access to Manufactured Housing Act – for years. Yet that bill never had a chance of passage with an Obama or Clinton in office.

 

Arguably, that kind of tangled web is what Allen has been on both sides of: at times in the past, opposing MHI and the manipulations of what he used to call the Big Three C’s, or the ‘aggressive’ community operators.

Note that none of the pawns – including Allen – in this Omaha-Knoxville ploy have to be aware of the role of the other.  Only a few puppet masters need to know.

That said, let’s swerve back to an example of GF Allen’s 180.

OligarchyDefinedGeorgeFAllenGFACommunityInvestorBlogCOBA7DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

Another example of Allen’s flip-flop on MHI and their big boy backers is below. But more recently – with apparent benefits from MHI leaders that he has not denied – Allen has ‘sold out’ to those very same interests.

ManufacturedHousingIndustryMonopoly-Oligarchy-GeorgeAllen-PostedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews-

George Allen, has a modest following today, which once used to be a large following. As a former client of his told MHProNews, with George “It’s AAA, All About Allen.” 

 

He Can’t Have it Both Ways!

This analysis logically implies that Allen is selling out his followers.  Allen has not disputed it. When given a documented chance for him to publicly respond, he said nothing.  Roane, distanced himself from it.

It also can’t be stressed enough that vacant home sites harms the value of an independently owned community. Lower sales volumes of new homes harms the value of essentially most every business in the industry.

Buffett can afford that, and so can a few big boys.  As the industry consolidates, they are acquiring businesses at a discounted value, part of the Buffett ‘value investing’ mantra.

 

UnderstandingWarrenBuffettCastleMoatMetaphorsQuotesDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Never forget that even during medieval times, castles and their moats were in fact breached.

 

But that spotlight casts a different perspective on Buffett and value investing. Because if he is manipulating the market in order to achieve that reduced value, that could be illegal and/or actionable.  Those actions, per attorneys and legal sources MHProNews has spoken to, could lead to liability from potential suits from potentially millions of manufactured home (MH) owners arguably harmed, as well as businesses who are not earning money they could or should absent such market manipulations.

In fact, a pair of antitrust experts told MHProNews that to them the sexier case to pursue in court would be that of resident/MH homeowners.

Such ploys may also lead to legal woes for MHI, and ‘insider’ members too.

It’s a tangled web.  There are many moving parts.  Allen and others like him are just purported pawns on a board.  They or Allen could be dispensed with or replaced at will.

There is also no need for Allen to grasp how he is being used.  So long as Allen plays his part, he’s useful to the axis and what Marty Lavin has termed ‘the big boys.’

It is in that context that Allen’s attack on MHARR begins to make sense.  Allen has in the past thanked Mark Weiss, JD, President and CEO for what Allen learned about the industry from him. Is this how Allen repays favors?

 

Cowardly Lion Claims to Fisk MHARR, But Now Won’t Criticize MHI?

What Allen wrote to oppose Weiss and MAHRR is so convoluted, that we will only look at his first so-called point to show how false much of his narrative is. Here’s a direct quote from Allen’s blog, that claims to analyze Weiss comments, linked here.

LATonyKovachDonWestphalKenRishelGeorgeAllenDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsLATonyKovachDonWestphalKenRishelGeorgeAllenDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Left to right, L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach, Don Westphal, Ken Rishel, and George Allen. Louisville 2011. Kovach has since made repeated amends, per SPJ guidance, see this link here. Will Allen do the same?

Here Mark introduces MHARR’s Board of Directors as leaders to ‘take the bull by the horns’ in the interest of improved industry representation – and national advocacy. Yet, not a single individual is named! Why? Ask MHARR; but they simply don’t make their membership rolls public, whereas MHI does. Point? Don’t know ‘bout you, but as a post-production sector businessman, there’s a far better chance of me following the leader I know than the one I don’t! How ‘bout you? This, in my opinion, is major flaw # 1 of this argument.”

 

There are several issues of factual errors by Allen, but let’s oversimply to show how misleading or mistaken Allen is.  First, Weiss is named, and he is MHARR’s senior staff leader. Second, no article – nor any book – has everything in it. Third, MHARR’s current chairman is named on the MHARR website, at this link here. It is John Bostick, of Sunshine Homes.  So Allen is factually and logically — wrong, wrong, wrong.

Our publisher has repeatedly invited Allen, Roane, or MHI connected leaders to debate or discuss such issues in public, in front of an audience of manufactured home professionals, with a moderator and video recorded so that all not in attendance can watch it later.  Allen, Roane, and the Omaha-Knoxville-Arlington axis have always passed on that opportunity. Why?

Tony Kovach has said in a semi-private message to Allen that he’s a coward. Thus, the cowardly lion image at the top of this post.

Like a sniper, Allen takes shots, perhaps thinking the noise of his shooting will make his readers think him brave? But what good are shots that miss often unnamed targets? What good are shots at the wrong target?

The reality is quite different from what Allen has portrayed.

There is good evidence that Allen has sold out to MHI and their puppet masters.  Allen may be under one or more NDAs.  But most important to his independently owned community readers, Allen is ignoring the harm done to them, while he is now praising the very people and organization – MHI – he used to criticize.

LATonyKovachMHanufacturedHomeLivingNewsManufacturedHousingProNewsConsultantIndustryExpertOur publisher referred to Allen for a quote to close on this analysis as follows.  “Sad and pathetic. Let George Allen man up, and face me on stage, in public, on camera in front of a live audience of industry pros, that includes his community followers.  Or let George wear the arguably apt moniker, ‘cowardly lion’ from this point forward.” – Tony Kovach.

How can Allen call for unity, when NAMHCO and MHARR exist precisely because they don’t trust MHI?

NealTHaneyNAMHCOWhyBreakawayfromManfuacturedHousingInstituteMHI

Once the rules of engagement and methods used are better understood, then one can often predict what will follow. 

DannyGhorbaniFormerMHIVpQuoteFoundingMHARRPresidentQuoteDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Allen’s repeatedly flawed analysis of Weiss’ column on MHARR’s website draws to a close like this: “So, the challenge to ‘LEAD, FOLLOW…OR GET OUT OF THE WAY’ will, once again, fall as they say, on deaf ears!

That is, unless action is taken at the MHCongress, calling for unified action by MHI, MHARR, & now, NAMHCO, during former’s fly-in meeting in Washington, DC. on 10 June 2019!” What? Allen won’t even acknowledge that he’s going to those events, but he’s shilling for MHI for others to go to their fundraising events?

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Or as honest Abe Lincoln observed:

 

you-can-fool-all-the-people-some-of-the-time-and-some-of-the-people-all-the-time-but-you-cannot-abraham-lincoln-quoteDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

You can read Lead, Follow, or Get out of the Way from the link below the byline and notices.  You can read a more detailed analysis of Allen at this link here.

That’s this Saturday’s in depth edition of “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

“Lead, Follow … Or Get Out of The Way”

 

MHCC Addresses Multiple Issues, HUD Secretary Carson Praises Manufactured Homes at Meeting

MHARR Calls on HUD Secretary to End Discriminatory And Exclusionary Zoning of HUD-Regulated Manufactured Homes

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

Manipulating Manufactured Housing Pros – Caterwauling Mudslinger, Just Write a Check, Pay Cash, Use Plastic, and Shut You Up

Prosperity Now, Nonprofits Sustain John Oliver’s “Mobile Homes” Video in Their Reports

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Investigation, Insider Trades, Hedge Fund Dumps Cavco Industries (CVCO)

April 29th, 2019 Comments off

 

NewInvestigationInsiderTradesHedgeFundDumpsCavcoIndustriesLogoCVCOJoeStegmayerPhotoManufacturedModularHousingMHProNews

In a recent release to the Daily Business News on MHProNews, Lifshitz & Miller announces investigation into possible securities laws violations in connection with a previously received subpoena [by Cavco Industries, Inc. (CVCO)] from the SEC,” said the law firm.

 

The firm said “If you are a Cavco investor, and would like additional information about our investigation, please complete the Information Request Form or contact Joshua Lifshitz, Esq. by telephone at (516) 493-9780 or e-mail at info@jlclasslaw.com.”

They are one of the latest in a series of law firms that have announced this type of investigation” on behalf of CVCO shareholders. See below the byline, offers, and notices further below for other shareholder investigation examples by a number of lawfirms.

Cavco has reportedly set aside millions of dollars in connection with their defense against such shareholder litigation efforts.

 

InsiderTradesManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Insider Trading…

We’ve lost count of how many times insiders have accumulated shares in a company that goes on to improve markedly. The flip side of that is that there are more than a few examples of insiders dumping stock prior to a period of weak performance,” said Simply Wall Street, in the tee-up to their report on insider trading in the last year at Cavco Industries (CVCO), which added, “It is perfectly legal for company insiders, including board members, to buy and sell stock in a company. However, rules govern insider transactions, and certain disclosures are required.”

In the last twelve months, the biggest single sale by an insider was when Joseph Stegmayer sold US$2.8m worth of shares at a price of US$240 per share. Although we don’t gain confidence from insider selling, we note that this large sale was at well above current price of US$129,” in an April 7th statement.

The share value of CVCO have slipped further since that report.

Cavco Industries insiders own about US$72m worth of shares. That equates to 6.1% of the company. We’ve certainly seen higher levels of insider ownership elsewhere,” per that same source.

 

2019-04-29_0128CavcoIndustriesStockTickerManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Data reflects the closing ticker on Friday, 4.26.2019, per Bloomberg. Text commentary and arrows by MHProNews.

 

Not all of the news for Cavco has been bad of late, as there are some investors and hedge funds that have taken new positions in a firm they may now think is undervalued. Meanwhile, others have cut their stakes in a firm that an insider told MHProNews last year had suffered a “debacle.” ICYMI, or need a refresher, see the related report, below the byline and notices for that report.

Among those that have sold shares of Cavco is Robotti Robert, an investment firm that has long believed in manufactured housing, which reportedly dumped half of their portfolio in CVCO, per EnHerald. “Robotti Robert decreased its stake in Cavco Inds Inc Del (CVCO) by 50.43% based on its latest 2018Q4 regulatory filing with the SEC. Robotti Robert sold 56,415 shares as the company’s stock declined 19.50% while stock markets rallied. The institutional investor held 55,462 shares of the basic industries company at the end of 2018Q4, valued at $7.23 million, down from 111,877 at the end of the previous reported quarter. Robotti Robert who had been investing in Cavco Inds Inc…for a number of months, seems to be less bullish one the $1.16B market cap company.”

Third Avenue Value Fund last year completely sold off their shares in Cavco, not long before the SEC subpoena was made public. Coincidence?

 

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Hit$ Bottom

 

Joe Stegmayer stepped down as Chairman and CEO in 2018, in the wake of the announcement of the SEC Subpoena. When contacted by MHProNews, the SEC would neither confirm nor deny that Cavco Industries was being investigated for possible collusion, antitrust, or other improprieties involving Clayton Homes.

If so, that could lead SEC investigators back to other concerns that have been raised in connection with other ‘big boy’ members of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI).

Stegmayer and MHI finally announced that he will be stepping down from his role as MHI Chairman. More on that and related in an upcoming report.

See ‘White Hat, Black Hat’ and other Cavco related reports in the related reports, linked below. Cavco is one of the stocks that are tracked in our MHProNews evening manufactured housing industry’s daily market report.  Friday’s closing tickers are linked here.

SubmitNewsTipsCommentsLettersToEditorMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

It’s Monday, Monday and that’s the latest edition of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

“Out-Performing the Market” Robert Robotti, Value Investing, and Manufactured Housing

 

Manufactured Housing Institute on Cavco Industries, ex-Chairman Joe Stegmayer SEC “Debacle”

 

 

Post “Debacle” – Insider Trade @ Cavco Industries – Has CVCO Hit Bottom? Plus, Manufactured Housing Equities Market Updates

 

Cavco Industries Announces Latest Executive Level Changes

 

 

Insider Trades, New Cavco Industries Investigation, Selling – Plus More Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

 

 

 

 

 

Cavco Industries Announces Latest Executive Level Changes

April 3rd, 2019 Comments off

CavcoIndustriesCVCOannouncesLatestExecutiveLevelChangesShareholdersInvestigationsMHProNews

In a media release, Cavco Industries (CVCO) has notified the Daily Business News on MHProNews of their latest executive changes.  Industry watchers see signs that the moves continue to be efforts to rebuild investor confidence in a firm rocked last November by the sudden departure of Joe Stegmayer as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), following a subpoena from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over alleged irregularities.

 

The meat of their release on is as follows, and will be accompanied by additional insights, observations, and analysis not found in the current GlobeWire release.  Publication of this release should not be construed to be a reflection for or against their firm or its stock.

 

Cavco Industries Names William Boor Chief Executive Officer

April 02, 2019 17:15 ET | Source: Cavco Industries, Inc.

Acting CEO Daniel Urness to resume former role of Chief Financial Officer

Steven Bunger assumes non-executive Chair of the Board responsibilities

Richard Kerley appointed Audit Committee Chair

Cavco Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVCO) (“the “Company”) today announced that its Board of Directors (the “Board”) has appointed William Boor as Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”), effective April 15, 2019. Mr. Boor will succeed Daniel Urness, who served as President and Acting Chief Executive Officer since November 2018. Mr. Urness will resume his former role of Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer, also effective April 15, 2019.

Mr. Boor assumes his new role as CEO with over 10 years of experience with Cavco, most recently serving as non-executive Chairman of the Board for the Company. Mr. Boor joined Cavco as an independent member of the Board in 2008. Several years prior to his service on the Cavco Board, Mr. Boor held the position of Vice President, Corporate Development at Centex Corporation while Cavco was a subsidiary of Centex. During that tenure, Mr. Boor worked on developing and implementing Cavco’s business strategy and participated in its eventual spin-off in 2003.

As CEO, Mr. Boor will be responsible for day-to-day leadership of the Company.

Mr. Boor will remain a member of the Company’s Board of Directors. The Board has named independent Board member Steven Bunger to serve as the Company’s new non-executive Chair of the Board. Richard Kerley has been appointed Chairman of the Audit Committee. Both of these Board appointments are effective immediately.

“After thoughtful consideration of options to strengthen the management team, the Board concluded Bill is the right choice to assume the CEO role,” commented Mr. Bunger, new non-executive Chair of Board. “Bill is a strong and proven leader, who has a successful track record of managing large, complex businesses and working across a range of executive roles in public companies. His significant knowledge and insights into Cavco’s business, from his tenure on the Board and previous strategic work with the company, provide the immediate and long-term ability needed to lead the execution of our strategic plan and focus on operational excellence.”

“The Board would like to thank Dan Urness for his leadership and contributions over the last five months as Acting CEO during an important period of transition. We are pleased he will remain an important part of our leadership team,” commented Mr. Boor. “I’ve had the pleasure of working closely with Dan for many years while I was Chairman of the Audit Committee and I look forward to working closely with him in the coming years.”

Mr. Boor added, “Cavco’s strong track record speaks for itself and we remain very well-positioned for the future. I’m excited to have the opportunity to lead the Company’s next chapter, working closely with the Board, and the entire Cavco team, to help the Company deliver value to all stakeholders including customers, employees, partners, and investors.”

William Boor, Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Boor, Chairman of the Company’s Audit Committee, a member of the Company’s Compensation Committee and an independent member of the Board since July 2008, most recently assumed the role of non-executive Chairman of the Board. Most recently, Mr. Boor held the role of Chief Executive Officer of Great Lakes Brewing Company, a large craft brewery in Cleveland, Ohio, a position he has held since 2015. From 2007 to 2014, Mr. Boor served in various executive positions with Cliffs Natural Resources, Inc. (“Cliffs”), most recently serving as Executive Vice President – Corporate Development and Chief Strategy/Risk Officer and President-Ferroalloys. Among other roles prior to Cliffs, Mr. Boor held the position of Vice President, Corporate Development at Centex Corporation. During that tenure, Cavco was a subsidiary of Centex, and Mr. Boor worked on the Cavco strategy and its eventual spin-off in 2003. Mr. Boor earned an engineering degree from Penn State University and a Master of Business Administration degree from Harvard Business School. He is also a CFA charterholder.

Daniel Urness, Chief Financial Officer
Mr. Urness was Cavco’s Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer from April 2015 until August 2018, where he transitioned into the role of President and Acting Chief Executive Officer in November 2018. Mr. Urness also served as Cavco’s Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer from January 2006 to April 2015 and as a director and/or officer of certain of Cavco’s major subsidiaries, including Palm Harbor Homes, Inc., Fleetwood Homes, Inc., CountryPlace Acceptance Corp. and Standard Casualty Company. Mr. Urness was also Cavco’s Interim Chief Financial Officer from August 2005 to January 2006, Corporate Controller from May 2005 to August 2005, financial consultant to the Company from June 2002 to May 2005 and Controller from May 1999 to June 2002. Prior to joining Cavco, Mr. Urness served as manager and staff accountant at Deloitte & Touche LLP for approximately six years.

Steven Bunger, Chair of the Board
Mr. Steven G. Bunger is an Independent Director of Cavco Industries, Inc. Mr. Bunger is currently President and Chief Executive Officer of Pro Box Portable Storage, Inc., a provider of portable storage solutions in Arizona, Colorado, and Oklahoma. From 2001 until December 31, 2012, he served as Chairman of the Board of Mobile Mini, Inc. the nation’s largest publicly-owned provider of portable storage containers and mobile offices. He was also the President and Chief Executive Officer of Mobile Mini Inc., having served in those capacities from 1997 to 2012. Mr. Bunger joined Mobile Mini in 1983 and held numerous positions with the company, including Vice President of Operations and Marketing and Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.

Richard Kerley, Audit Committee Chairman
Mr. Kerley served as the Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and member of the Board of Peter Piper, Inc., a privately-held pizza and entertainment restaurant chain, from November 2008 to December 2014, when he retired. Previously, Mr. Kerley served as the Chief Financial Officer of Fender Musical Instruments Corporation, from July 2005 to October 2008. From June 1981 to July 2005, Mr. Kerley was an audit partner with Deloitte & Touche LLP. Prior to becoming a partner at Deloitte & Touche LLP, Mr. Kerley served as an audit manager and staff accountant from August 1971 to June 1981. Mr. Kerley also currently serves on the board of The Providence Service Corporation, a publicly traded holding company whose subsidiaries provide high quality, technology-enabled healthcare services, and The Joint Corp., a publicly traded operator, manager and franchisor of chiropractic clinics. Mr. Kerley received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Marshall University in 1971.

 

Looking Back…

Industry watchers and legal minds note that prior statements this year from Cavco reflected specific steps aimed at strengthening their perceived position with respect to whatever the SEC and shareholders plaintiffs’ attorneys are preparing.

For example, on the dates noted:

PHOENIX, Feb. 07, 2019 — Cavco Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVCO) (“Cavco” or the “Company”) today announced that the Company has named Mickey R. Dragash (“Mick”) as Executive Vice President, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer, and Corporate Secretary effective February 6, 2019.

In his new role, Mr. Dragash will lead Cavco’s legal and compliance functions. Mr. Dragash will also serve as a member of the Company’s Executive Management team and will report to Dan Urness, President and Acting Chief Executive Officer.

“Mick is an excellent addition to our leadership team,” commented Dan Urness, President and Acting Chief Executive Officer. “He is a proven executive with extensive experience in leading legal and compliance functions and supporting strategic initiatives across an organization. Mick’s thoughtful judgment and business-focused approach will be an asset as we continue to execute our growth strategy.”

“I am very pleased to have the opportunity to lead Cavco’s legal team and compliance function,” added Mr. Dragash. “I look forward to working closely with Dan, the leadership team, and the Board of Directors to build on the Company’s long-term success.”

Mickey R. Dragash’s Background

Mr. Dragash brings significant legal, compliance and operational experience to Cavco. From June 2015 to September 2017, Mr. Dragash served as Executive Vice-President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary of Swift Transportation, Inc. (n/k/a Knight-Swift Transportation Holdings Inc. (“Swift”)). Prior to joining Swift, Mr. Dragash was Executive Vice-President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer for Gordon Trucking, Inc. (n/k/a Heartland Express, Inc.) from 2013 to 2015. Mr. Dragash also served as Associate General Counsel for DHL Supply Chain Solutions from 2010 to 2013 and Assistant General Counsel at Walmart Stores, Inc. from 2004 to 2010. Mr. Dragash also worked in private legal practice as an Associate for the Ohio-based law firm Roetzel & Andress, LPA. Before entering the legal profession, Mr. Dragash worked in various business and operational capacities for both Yellow Freight Systems, Inc. and Roadway Express, Inc. (n/k/a YRC Worldwide, Inc.)

Mr. Dragash received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Baldwin-Wallace University (Ohio), obtained a Master of Science degree in Transportation Systems and Logistics Management from the University of Denver and acquired his Juris Doctorate from Ohio Northern University. Mr. Dragash is admitted to practice law in all state and federal courts of Indiana and Ohio. He is also admitted to the State Bar of Arizona as in-house counsel.

Also…

PHOENIX, Jan. 08, 2019 — Cavco Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVCO) today announced that its Board of Directors (“Board”) appointed Susan L. Blount as an independent director of the Company’s Board. Ms. Blount, an experienced financial services executive, retired as Executive Vice President and General Counsel of Prudential Financial, Inc. in 2015, having served as General Counsel since 2005.

Ms. Blount’s appointment fills the vacancy on Cavco’s Board and brings its current membership to five directors, all of whom are independent. She will be a member of the Company’s Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee and the Company’s Compensation Committee.

“We are extremely pleased to welcome Susan Blount to our Board,” commented William Boor, non-executive Chairman of the Board of Cavco. “Susan’s accomplishments speak for themselves. She has significant and very relevant experience in strategy, corporate governance, risk and compliance in both the public and private sectors.”

Mr. Boor continued, “Susan’s addition reflects our commitment to enhance the Board’s capabilities and diversity. We look forward to getting the benefit of her insights, judgment and counsel, and we are confident that Susan will make a meaningful and very positive impact on our Company’s future success.”

“I am excited to join and begin to work with the Cavco Board as we move into 2019,” said Ms. Blount. “Cavco fills an important role in the US housing market and the Company has impressed me with its strong commitment to governance and focus on superior stockholder returns.”

“Ms. Blount is an outstanding addition to our Board,” added Daniel Urness, President and Acting Chief Executive Officer of Cavco. “Her public company and diverse corporate management experience will offer fresh perspectives and oversight to help our leadership team enhance long-term shareholder value.”

Susan L. Blount

From 2005 to 2015, Susan Blount served as General Counsel of Prudential Financial, Inc. (Prudential), a leading provider of insurance, retirement and asset management products and services. In that role, Ms. Blount led the company’s global law, compliance, business ethics and external affairs organization. During that time, Ms. Blount was a member of key senior management committees including the Office of the Chairman Group, the Enterprise Risk Committee and the Capital and Financial Controls Committee. Ms. Blount joined Prudential in 1985 as a staff attorney in the company’s commercial real estate organization. Before being appointed General Counsel, she held various positions of increasing responsibility, including Chief Investment Counsel, Vice President and Corporate Secretary, and Associate General Counsel and Head of Shareholder Service. Prior to joining Prudential, Ms. Blount was an Associate at Kirkland & Ellis.

In 2017, Ms. Blount was an Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow at Harvard University. Since 2016, she has taught as an adjunct professor at the University of Texas School of Law. Ms. Blount is active in professional and community service. She currently serves on the University of Texas Law School Foundation, the Executive Committee of the Center for Women in Law and the Nantucket Historical Association. Ms. Blount has also served on the Boards of organizations such as Montclair State University, the Leadership Council for Legal Diversity, the Association of Corporate Counsel and the New Jersey Law and Education Empowerment Project. She has also been a faculty member at Stanford University’s annual Directors’ College and a participant in Stanford’s Institutional Investors Forum.

Ms. Blount graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor’s degree in history and a juris doctor with honors.  

Shareholders Concerns

Some of the shareholders focused law firms that have announced “investigations” into Cavco are reflected in the screen capture, below.

 

CavcoIndustriesCVCOShareholdersInvestigationsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Some might wonder why Joe Stegmayer is still Chairman of the Board at the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI)?  See the screen capture below from their website this morning.

ManufacturedHousingInstiuteMHIboardofDirectors4.3.2019DailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The trend lines per Bloomberg and others are sobering.  It is but one more example of the avoidable tragedies that manufactured housing represents. The industry should be soaring, and instead, it is snoring. Thoughtful people ask two questions.  ‘Why?’ and ‘Cui bono?’ Latin for, Who benefits?

 

BloombergCavco4.2.2019TickerDailyBusienssNewsMHProNews

For more related reports, further below the byline and notices.

That’s today’s latest episode of “News through the lens of manufactured homes, and factory-built housing.” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Manufactured Housing Institute on Cavco Industries, ex-Chairman Joe Stegmayer SEC “Debacle”

What’s Coming at Cavco Industries (CVCO), Plus Manufactured Housing Industry Stock Updates

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Officials Issue Several Warnings

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Class Action Suit

Insider Trades, New Cavco Industries Investigation, Selling – Plus More Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Hit$ Bottom

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lesli Gooch, PhD, Manufactured Housing Institute EVP Reveals DTS Financing Con Job

March 26th, 2019 Comments off

 

LesliGoochPhDphotoManufacturedHousingInstituteLOGOEVPExposesDutyToserveManufacturedHomesConJobDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

When asked, manufactured home industry members often say they want more and better lending options.  That’s especially true for personal property, home only, or ‘chattel loans.’  Prospective consumers want more affordable lending. Existing or current manufactured home owners may want to refinance higher rate loans with a Berkshire Hathaway lending brand in order to get a lower interest rate.  So there are an array of those who want better lending options.

 

It is debatable if Executive Vice-President (EVP) Lesli Gooch – who some speculate is the heir apparent to Richard ‘Dick’ Jennison as the next Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) president – consciously or unconsciously intended to reveal the ‘Big Con‘ in manufactured housing finance with her new article in MHVillage’s MHInsider. 

Regardless, this Daily Business News on MHProNews fact-check will unveil the latest purported fabrication that mixes fact with fiction.  She claims that MHI is actually trying to get more financing options for the industry’s independents.  Is that demonstrably so?

First, let’s see what Gooch said in the March/April issue of the clearly pro-MHI MHInsider.

The purchase and securitization of chattel loans by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises or GSEs) is crucial to our industry, and MHI has engaged in years-long effort to push the Enterprises to purchase chattel loans as soon as possible.”  The first part of that sentence from Gooch’s column is a widely agreed to statement, but the accuracy of the second part (i.e.: if MHI is truly pushing for chattel loans by the GSEs “as soon as possible”) is what this fact-check will explore.

With housing finance reform expected to be on Congress’ agenda in the coming year, MHI has positioned the industry well,” wrote Gooch.  Positioned the industry well, for what? Let’s look.

One of MHI’s top priorities for 2019 is to continue to improve the supply of manufactured housing financing, including further progress toward the creation of a secondary market for chattel loans,” said Gooch.

  • If so, why did MHI’s former Executive Committee Chairman Tim Williams say that pursing duty to serve was a waste of time” – in his own prior written statement to MHProNews?
  • Or more recently, Paul Barretto with Fannie Mae confirmed that they had received no data to support chattel loan performance from either of the big two Berkshire Hathaway owned chattel lenders, Vanderbilt Mortgage and Finance (VMF), or 21st Mortgage Corp, which has the same Tim Williams as its president. Doesn’t those facts alone mitigate against Gooch’s bold claim?
  • If the two largest MHI lenders wanted the GSEs to do lending ‘as soon as possible,’ then why didn’t they give their loan performance data as Fannie and Freddie requested?

MHI can’t logically claim to have it both ways.  One or more at MHI in key roles are not being accurate or honest. Other MHI lenders, by the way, did reportedly give the GSEs their loan performance data.  So why didn’t 21st or VMF?  It last factoid should be underscored.  It must never be misconstrued that what some do at MHI, Clayton, 21st, et al is automatically a bad reflection on others. It’s not.  MHProNews strongly believes in separating wheat from chaff.  Both are found wherever you look.

Note that neither MHI, Clayton Homes, nor Tim Williams/21st have denied our published reports in person, or in writing. MHProNews routinely gives them an invitation to do so.  Is that so because there are witnesses and documents that back up our evidence and fact-based assertions?

 

 

Follow the Money

Recall that an inside source recently told MHProNews about an “unholy alliance” to divert Duty to Serve (DTS) manufactured home lending by the GSEs lending options away from most manufactured homes. Gooch claims in MHInsider and elsewhere that MHI is working to expand lending. Then how do they explain that MHI signed onto a public letter recently that asks FHFA to ‘go slow’ on changes with the GSEs?

That letter MHI signed onto with other associations outside of manufactured housing was reported by the mainstream media. What that joint letter says and what Gooch claims are mutually exclusive. MHI can’t have it both ways, logically.  Posturing or claiming something are not the same as doing what’s claimed.

Furthermore, MHI worked behind closed doors with the GSEs to get financing that ended up only useful for the Clayton Homes-backed ‘new class of homes.’ Repeated requests by MHARR or MHProNews to have those minutes released were not honored. If MHI truly wanted to expand lending with the GSEs, then why didn’t they work with the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) to get lending on all manufactured homes, not for just a select few manufactured homes?

Rephrased, when viewed against a variety of known facts and evidence there is a gross lack of logic in what Gooch claims, and what the Arlington, VA based MHI trade association has done in recent years.

Recall that a GSE prior “MH Select” program was a dismal failure in the marketplace, per sources at a GSE. Note too that the new breakaway from MHI, NAMHCO hired a lobbyist in part precisely because they don’t think MHI is working to get robust GSE chattel lending for communities, or others. There is scant evidence – beyond mere words – that MHI has tried to get robust chattel lending by the GSE, but considerable evidence to the contrary.

FollowThe MoneyPayMoreAttentionToWhatPeopleDothanwhatTheySaySpySea72MartyLavinYachtManufacturedHousingINdustryProMHProNews

Ask yourself. Do these Marty Lavin dictums apply in this case?

Berkshire Hathaway Annual Report

When you follow the money, for years, the annual Berkshire Hathaway annual report reflects the fact that much of the profits from manufactured housing that they earn are from financing and financial services. Is the industry, or clear and objective thinkers interested in affordable manufactured homes, really going to believe that the Berkshire brand lenders at MHI want to lose profits by having the GSEs compete with VMF and 21st?  Wouldn’t VMF and 21st lose millions of dollars a year if consumers switched their loans from higher interest rates with Berkshire Hathaway lenders to lower rates with a GSE, if competitive rate chattel loans were available for any manufactured homes?

It bears mention that at a San Antonio MHI meeting in 2017, in front of a relative small group of MHI members, Tim Williams specifically said to those MHI members that they (21st, VMF) didn’t want to see the GSEs get the best credit, and leave the Berkshire lenders with lower credits scores and lower profits.  That too contradicts Gooch’s claim.

Thus including from their former chairman, there is plenty of evidence that stands in stark contrast to what Gooch claimed.  Darren Krolewski – publisher of the MHInsider and Lesli Gooch were both at that same San Antonio MHI meeting, per sources.  They where there when Williams from 21st made the statements noted herein and above.  It seems unlikely that they didn’t hear or didn’t know about Williams statements, or the fact that Williams himself admitted that the had given no data to the GSEs.

All of those points contradict Gooch’s claim.  Indeed, it makes appear that her and Krolewski seem to be de facto ‘in on a con job’ – part of the problem, instead of part of the solution.

That leaves honest manufactured home industry members with this vexing conclusion.  Gooch and MHInsider – the first three letters of the publication’s name spell MHI – are deliberately trying to con or head fake the industry into believing something other than what MHI and the Berkshire brands are doing.  Logic alone suggests that Omaha and Knoxville based operations would purportedly thwart rather than promote lending that competes with what 21st or VMF offers.

If Krolewski, who has his own documented challenges with sharing facts accurately and honestly, or:

 

  • Lesli Gooch,
  • Tim Williams/21st,
  • the GSEs,
  • Joe Stegmayer, MHI chairman,
  • any other officials from MHI,
  • their attorneys,
  • or one of the other Knoxville-metro based Berkshire Hathaway brands want to provide evidence of their work that prove otherwise – not mere claims that are easily debunked – let them come to Session 1 of Thursday afternoon’s Fix the MH Industry Tricks meeting. Learn more linked there, or at the links found below.

 

KennyLipschutzHomeFirstCertifiedCommunitiesMHINCCmemberPuzzlesWhyMHIDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Ask yourself if this MHI member’s prior statement has been born out in fact-checks like this one?

 

The industry will arguably not achieve its tremendous potential for profitable and honorable growth until a pro-financing, pro-growth national association option exists to MHI.  Learn more at the links, above and below.  Make or modify your plans to attend the historic meetings Thursday afternoon, in Tunica MS near the trade show location, and after the main Tunica Show events are concluded.

#MobileHomeMilitiaWalkaMileAvoidFightWhenOneStartsDontBackDownAnInch

See ‘You’ve Gotta Have Swagger. ‘  You don’t have to be in the #MHM to attend. Click here to RSVP by saying RSVP in the subject line with your name, title and contact information.

That’s what’s new from manufactured housing most read and most trusted “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two browsers do.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

DTS Manufactured Home Lending Committee Member Says MHI in “Unholy Alliance” to Divert Needed GSE Support Away from Manufactured Housing

Manufactured Housing – Easy as 1, 2, 3

 

Profiting & Correcting – Manufactured Housing Traps, Pitfalls and Swindles

&nbsp;

Rocking Manufactured Housing Shows, Events, and Marketing Promotions

&nbsp;

In Manufactured Home Marketing, Size and Results Matter!

Smile! You’re on Candid Camera! Security, Casino Hotels, and Fix the MH Trick$ Tunica Event

“Out-Performing the Market” Robert Robotti, Value Investing, and Manufactured Housing

&nbsp;

Fix MH Industry Trick$ – Special Meeting at Tunica Show

&nbsp;

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

&nbsp;

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

&nbsp;

MHARR Releases Study Recommending Independent Collective Representation for Post-Production Sector

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

&nbsp;

Cavco Industries Woes Mount, Official, Unofficial Insights, Broader Manufactured Home Industry Impacts?

February 14th, 2019 Comments off

 

CavcoIndustriesWoesMountBroaderManufacturedHousingImpactBeyondTheirBrandsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

Thank you. And before we begin, please be advised that comments made during this conference call by management will contain forward-looking statements under the provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements of expectations or assumptions about Cavco’s financial and operational performance, revenues, earnings per share, cash flow or use, cost savings and operational efficiencies,” said Mark Fusler, Director of Financial Reporting for Cavco Industries (CVCO), per the Motley Fool’s official earnings call transcript.

 

Some factors that may affect the company’s results include, but are not limited to the risk of litigation or regulatory action arising from the subpoenas we received from the SEC, the risk of potential litigation or regulatory action arising from the SEC related internal investigation and its findings, potential reputational damage that Cavco may suffer as a result of matters under investigation, adverse industry condition, our involvement in vertically integrated lines of business, including manufactured housing, consumer finance, commercial finance and insurance, market forces and housing demand fluctuations, our business and operations being concentrated in certain geographical region, the loss of any of our executive officers, federal government shutdown, and extensive regulation affecting manufactured housing,” said Fusler for Cavco.

This conference call also contains time-sensitive information that is accurate only as of the date of this live broadcast Tuesday, February 5, 2019. Cavco undertakes no obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this conference call, except as required by law,” Fusler stated before turning the call over to Daniel L. Urness, President and Acting Chief Executive Officer of Cavco.

One could unpack those disclosures at great length and depth.

But what was not directly stated was that the number of shareholders plaintiffs’ attorneys doing “investigations” of Cavco and CVCO stock has mounted. It’s about a dozen known firms, to date – and while it is implied by Fusler – it is not bluntly stated.

Nor was it directly said that Cavco continues to take several preparatory moves, per legal sources, that make it clear that they expect a potentially protracted legal battle over the Stegmayer-SEC subpoena reported issue. That too may be construed as implied, but was not stated.

 

 

The Curious Case of Cavco and Joe Stegmayer?

There are communications that have been sent to MHProNews as news tips that have occurred since he stepped down as chairman and CEO of Cavco that some might interpret as Stegmayer exercising more leadership at Cavco than his current job title may imply.

The fact that Stegmayer is still Chairman of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Executive Committee ought to be of interest too.

 

CavcoIndustriesWikiPage2142019ManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Why? Several possible reasons, per sources that include, but may not by limited to the notion of “derivative liabilities.” We will explore that topic in an upcoming report.

But look again at this part of Fusler’s disclaimer statements: “...market forces and housing demand fluctuations, our business and operations being concentrated in certain geographical region, the loss of any of our executive officers, federal government shutdown, and extensive regulation affecting manufactured housing…”

Which of those plaintiffs attorneys investigating Cavco have begun to uncover the various concerns about alleged market rigging or related that has been raised by MHProNews, MHLivingNews, MHARR and others? Which shareholders investigators have connected the relevant dots between Cavco, Clayton, and MHI?

Or who at the SEC is doing so?

How many of those shareholders attorneys or the SEC have had staff pouring over reports published here or elsewhere about Stegmayer, Cavco, Clayton, and MHI?

Without revealing sources and methods, it is common-sense to think that such research is the underway. If so, doesn’t that mean that Cavco’s legal bills and exposure will mount?

 

SubmitNewsTipsCommentsLettersToEditorMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

 

But the market’s investors are apparently beginning to regain a measure of confidence in Cavco. They may – correctly or incorrectly – think the worst is over for CVCO, and that the stock is now “a value” in the Warren Buffett sense of the term.

 

 

CavcoIndustries2142019ManufacturedHomeIndustryNewsDailyBusinessNewsMHProNEws

 

The storm brewing over Cavco could disrupt more than what some in MHVille, the investment community – or even in Phoenix, Knoxville, and Arlington –  may currently believe. MHProNews will do follow up reports that will continue to unpack what is occurring in the developing case.

 

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.  

 

Until the next report, note as a disclosure that MHProNews’ management holds no position in any tracked stock in our evening markets report, nor plans to open a position in the next few days.  Some prior reports can be accessed from the text/image box below.

 

What’s Coming at Cavco Industries (CVCO), Plus Manufactured Housing Industry Stock Updates

 

But we are keenly interested. As the #1 read, and pro-sustainable growth manufactured housing trade media, plus consulting, and professional services provider, we wonder aloud why certain steps have not yet occurred at MHI, their member companies, including Cavco, Clayton, 21st Mortgage and others haven’t already occurred?

Stay tuned, because more is almost guaranteed to be revealed. And if so, will it once more send shock waves though Cavco, or others?  “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

HUD Code Manufactured Home Production Decline Persists – Time For Action Not Excuses

“The Illusion of Motion Versus Real-World Challenges”

Independent National Manufactured Housing Post-Production Association Takes Major Step

President Trump Announces Nominee Dr. Mark Calabria to Become New Director of Federal Housing Finance Agency

MHARR Calls on HUD To Remove Zoning, Placement and Consumer Financing Barriers to Manufactured Homes

MHARR Exposes GSES’ Failure On Chattel Financing Before Congress

Independent National Manufactured Housing Post-Production Association Takes Major Step

“Washington Post Article Underscores Clear Need for An Independent Post-Production Association”

MHARR Releases Study Recommending Independent Collective Representation for Post-Production Sector

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cavco Industries (CVCO) Class Action Suit

January 28th, 2019 Comments off

 

CavcoIndustriesLogoCVCOLogoClassActionLawsuitShareholdersManufacturedModularHousingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

The draft of the pending class action suit against Cavco Industries (CVCO) is the result of a news tip to the Daily Business News on MHProNews.

 

As regular MHProNews readers know, there are numerous law firms circling Cavco.  This report will review some key claims of the Howard G. Smith lawfirm’s attorneys, acting on behalf of CVCO shareholders in the pending suit.

Quoting from the attached draft, this report will start with – the Nature and Overview of the Plaintiffs Pending Complaint?

  1. This is a class action on behalf of persons and entities that acquired Cavco securities between August 6, 2018 and November 8, 2018, inclusive (the “Class Period”), seeking to pursue remedies under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”).

 

  1. On November 8, 2018, the Company revealed that it had received a subpoena from the SEC’s Division of Enforcement on August 20, 2018, requesting certain documents relating to trading in the stock of a public company, and that then-Chief Executive Officer Joseph Stegmayer had received a subpoena regarding similar issues on October 1, 2018.

 

  1. On this news, the Company’s share price fell $49.48 or over 23%, to close at $165.20 per share on November 9, 2018, on unusually heavy trading volume.

 

  1. Throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, Defendants failed to disclose to investors: (1) that the Company had agreed to refrain from trading the stock of public companies; (2) that, after such agreement, the Company’s CEO had engaged in the trading of the stock of public companies; (3) that such trading activities were reasonably likely to subject the Company to regulatory investigations; and (4) that, as a result of the foregoing, Defendants’ positive statements about 2 the Company’s business, operations, and prospects were materially false and/or misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.

 

  1. As a result of Defendants’ wrongful acts and omissions, and the precipitous decline in the market value of the Company’s securities, Plaintiff and other Class members have suffered significant losses and damages.

 

CLASS ACTION ALLEGATIONS

“(1) that the Company [Cavco] had [previously] agreed to refrain from trading the stock of public companies;

 

(2) that, after such agreement, the Company’s CEO [Joe Stegmayer] had engaged in the trading of the stock of public companies;

 

(3) that such trading activities were reasonably likely to subject the Company to regulatory investigations; and

 

(4) that, as a result of the foregoing, Defendants’ positive statements about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects were materially false and/or misleading and/or lacked a reasonable basis.

 

  1. Throughout the Class Period, Defendants made materially false and/or misleading statements, as well as failed to disclose material adverse facts about the Company’s business, operations, and prospects. Specifically, Defendants failed to disclose to investors:

 

  1. As a result of Defendants’ wrongful acts and omissions, and the precipitous decline in the market value of the Company’s securities, Plaintiff and other Class members have suffered significant losses and damages.”

 

 

Specific and Broader Take-Aways?

There are some voices in the industry’s legal community that indicate that the phrasing used above could potentially be used against some other publicly traded companies, specifically those associated with the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI). If so, that in turn could mean MHI members who ignore the risks associated with the reports like the one linked here could be putting their shareholders at risk too.

Keep in mind that a contact at the Securities and Exchange Commissions (SEC) would neither confirm nor deny that Cavco is being investigated for possible market-rigging collusion in connection with Clayton Homes, a Berkshire Hathaway (BRK) subsidiary. Stegmayer was prior to going to Cavco, a Clayton division president. There have been persistent rumors among some HUD Code manufactured home independents and others that the move by Stegmayer to Cavco was part of a plan hatched at Clayton. But there is no documentation that has yet to be provided to MHProNews that supports such a claim. Why is that of interest?

Consider the second point from the plaintiff’s draft foundation.

Cavco purports to design and produce factory-built homes and to build park model RVs, vacation cabins and systems-built commercial structures.” Purports? Isn’t that the obvious thing that they are doing? Is the Howard G. Smith law-firm signaling that they have something more?

It should be noted that the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) has been characteristically mute on this developing issue. Stegmayer remains in place as the MHI Chairman.

Note too that some bloggers in the industry have attempted to white-wash the seriousness of this matter. There are those who believe that those cheerleading bloggers and ‘trade media’ are acting as a deliberate distraction mechanism from MHI and their puppet masters.

 

A contact at Cavco declined commenting about the specifics of the matter, saying to publisher L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach “No comment sorryI appreciate the offer (to share a Cavco viewpoint). You are an honest man no matter what George [Allen] says…” It was an interesting comment, as doubtless many at the firm have been harmed, specifically if employees are also shareholders. It should be noted anew, given cheap shots from the galleries, that MHProNews follows the known facts, evidence, and the money.

The full draft legal document against Cavco is attached here.

There is speculation from a source that the draft was provided to MHProNews perhaps as a negotiation tool with Cavco, to use as leverage to quietly settle the case. MHProNews is not in a position to comment on the motivations, or lack thereof, of those who provide authentic news tips backed by evidence.

 

EmailNewsUpdatesMHProNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

 

There’s more on this evolving Cavco Industries (CVCO) and inter-related topic that MHProNews has obtained. In the days ahead, related reports will be published, possibly during the Louisville Show. Watch for it and sign up for the industry’s leading emailed headline news, found at the links below.

As a disclosure, MHProNews’ parent company management holds no position in any of the tracked stocks we include in our evening market report. Friday’s report is linked here. That’s MH “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” ## © (News, analysis, and commentary.)

 

ManufacturedHousingProNewsMHProNewsConfidentialTipsDocumentsNews

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

NOTICE: You can get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates, at this link here. You can join the scores who follow us on Twitter at this link. Connect on LinkedIn here.

NOTICE 2: Readers have periodically reported that they are getting a better experience when reading MHProNews on the Microsoft Edge, or Apple Safari browser than with Google’s Chrome browser. Chrome reportedly manipulates the content of a page more than the other two.

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

Related Reports:

You can click on the image/text boxes to learn more about that topic.

Insider Trades, New Cavco Industries Investigation, Selling – Plus More Manufactured Housing Stock Updates

 

Manufactured Home Production Decline Accelerates in November 2018

Positive, Uplifting Third-Party Reports Favor Modern Manufactured Housing, So What’s Going Wrong?

 

Manufactured Housing Institute on Cavco Industries, ex-Chairman Joe Stegmayer SEC “Debacle”

 

 

 

 

 

Manufactured Housing – MHVille, It’s Not a Matter Open to Interpretation

November 20th, 2018 Comments off

 

ManufacturedHousingNotMatterOpenToInterpretationDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsHere in the U.S., the legal system forbids falsehood, though the law knows that it occurs.  After 18 months of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, millions of observers have learned that lying to the FBI is a federal crime. Some have plead guilty, but not to a 2016 campaign violation. Rather, they plead guilty to making a false statement.

 

Talking heads on TV nod soberly and call it a “perjury trap.”

On an entirely different level, Martha Stewart knows that trap all too well.

So why has lying and deception become so common?

CNNMarthaStewartPerjuryLyingDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Manufactured Homes and Misinformation

How does misinformation impact manufactured housing, each and every day?

If tens of millions knew the unvarnished truth about our industry’s affordable housing products and services, and there was reasonable:

  • financing,
  • placement,
  • capital,
  • zoning,
  • and information/attitude parity with conventional housing,

would there have been a million new HUD Code manufactured homes sold in 2018, vs. the estimated 100,000 (+/-) actually expected by year’s end?

 

What is Wrong is That We Don’t Ask What is Right.”

– Gilbert Keith (G.K.) Chesterton.

 

Millions who know Chesterton’s work know that he’s better known as G.K., not by Gilbert Keith. Is that a lie? A deception?

When Cavco’s Joseph Stegmayer goes by “Joe,” does anyone seriously think of that as a lie? No, no more so than MHI’s Dick Jennison is lying for being a Dick, when his given name is Richard.

There are customs dating back for centuries that make it clear that we all have a reasonable degree of flexibility in the use of our own names. This writer for a time had people call her Sophia, thinking it would be easier for Americans to say, when my driver’s license said that Soheyla was my given Farsi name.

Samuel Clemens committed no crime when his writings were under the pen name Mark Twain. Teddy Roosevelt was Theodore. Barry Obama was actually named Barack, and so on.

So, a degree of understanding and common sense are necessary for mature adults as to what is or isn’t a deliberate falsehood.

 

MarkTwainSamuelClemensWikiQuotesDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

Privacy

It’s true that some people put their sexual lives online via social media, videos, photos, etc. in a deliberate fashion. But there’s still a general acceptance among people that one’s sex life is personal, and those details are generally not put forth for all to see.  We recently reminded readers that when we ask for news tips, we don’t seek information on people’s private lives, unless it has a clear connection to legal violation, or some wrongdoing in an official capacity.

 

WarrenBuffettBillGatesBusinessInsiderDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

There are some funny, odd, and other items that are beyond suggestive that have been provided to MHProNews, some of which are just not what we are about. This one is on the lighter side, not a slam or slur.

 

There are other details that people keep private.

Medical histories, financial access codes, and identification numbers are but a few examples.

Companies have some items that are kept confidential, rightly, on items like so-called ‘trade secrets.’ Those secrets are often legitimate, although some can be based upon a false premise, if those secrets were in fact stolen from another person or entity.

Theft of intellectual property is what much of the hang up is between the U.S. and China in bilateral trade talks. Some want those U.S.-China trade disputes quickly resolved. But the theft of ‘intellectual property,’ of corporate or even governmental secrets, cost hundreds of billions of dollars a year for American businesses. Furthermore, millions of records of former or current federal officials were reportedly hacked by the Chinese, as the following media and others reported.

 

HacksFederalComptuersbyChineseHackersDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

Other nation-states directly or through third-parties have hacked the information of citizens, companies, and governmental offices.

Yet in the U.S.A. today, it’s Russia that’s demonized more than China, North Korea, or other countries like Iran. Why?

Does anyone recall that Iran’s nuclear program was supposedly delayed by a piece of malware planted by the U.S. and/or Israel? That’s only a point-of-fact made to say that some cyberwarfare tactics are used by all; it is not to say that the U.S. does some of what China or Iran does.

There’s the language of diplomacy, which is often polite. We hear President Donald J. Trump call Communist China’s President Xi his friend. Really? But it’s a bit like Presidents George W. Bush or Barack H. Obama avoiding the use of the term, “radical Islamic terrorist.” Agree or disagree, but those usages are commonplace in public speaking by leaders. They are often not done as a lie. Rather, it’s a means of politely avoiding a difficult reality. Those who’ve used or avoided certain terminology may sincerely think it is to avoid harmfully stirring up public sentiment.

Mature people have to read between the lines. Tim Williams’ given name is TIMOTHY. Is that a lie, for him to go by Tim? Absolutely not. When James Clayton goes by Jim, does that harm another person? No.

MHProNews does not go after silly or private details that mean nothing to a reasonable person. Rather, we focus on issues that impact the industry, and thus should cause concern, alarm, or may legally be actionable.

ConfidentialNewsTipsOKTipsIreportMHNews@MHMSM-comGraphic

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

 

The Tech Giants

The infographic chart below reflects what information is being collected on you by which tech giants.

Yes, on you.

WhatTechCompaniuesSocialMediaKnowAboutYouFAANGDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Click here to see this full sized.

 

It may be legal. But we as a society have gotten into certain habits. A pop-up box appears on a small or larger screen. It asks us to accept the “terms of use,” which are dozens of pages of legalese long. When was the last time you read those? If you want the ap or service, you click “yes,” and go on.

But that “yes” to tech is arguably to some degree a conditioned response. A shrewd attorney, a sympathetic arbitrator, judge, or jury might invalidate that consent, because that “yes” wasn’t fully informed.

The tech giants wield enormous financial and information power over millions in America and billions more around the world. Those companies – the FAANG brands, that we reported in our market report last night as sliding – are products and services that are so commonplace in our society, that tens of millions don’t question them.  ICYMI, you can circle back later and get more details.

 

Investor Fright Bites FAANG, Drags Equities, Plus MH Market Updates

 

A relatively small amount of money from Russia reportedly was spent in the 2016 campaign as disinformation on Facebook. It included both pro- and anti-Secretary Hillary Clinton and/or Donald J. Trump information. Might it have misled a few voters? Not enough to swing the election, or even come close. Who said? Then President, Barack Obama.

Yet because of some segments of mainstream media, as well as some of those tech giants, there are large swaths of the public that believe that actual votes were changed – voting machines or ballots – and that mistakenly think that Donald J. Trump ‘stole’ an election.

1430 AM reports that a new survey by the Economist/YouGov stated that over 40 percent of Americans believe that Russians changed actual votes. That’s not true.  Even former President Barack Obama said at the time that it wasn’t even possible to do that kind of election hack.

Since that statement by the former 44th president, Assistant Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and others have said that no votes in the 2016 election were changed by Russian interference.

 

AstAGRodRosenstienNoVotesChangedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Almost no one speaks about concerns over how former President Obama and then Secretary Clinton allegedly attempted to influence a Russian election, against Vladimir Putin. It’s all part of a tit-for-tat that the U.S. and Russia have done for years. Or how millions of Israelis and Brits fumed when former President Obama made statements that they felt attempted to influence the election of Prime Minster Bibi Netanyahu, or the Brexit vote.

What’s the common point? All of the above are real issues and concerns, and they relate to widely held misinformation. Each of the above notions could be confirmed with a few simple fact checks.

But what’s sinister and impacts our manufactured home industry – and tens of millions of Americans – is how misinformation or misleading postures are used day-by-day within our industry, and inside of our nation. Or how conditioned responses can cause people to give away information that most would deem private.

Manipulation and misinformation have been made commonplace.

Let’s go back to that list of 7 billionaires who supported Democratic candidates in the 2018 midterms.  It includes Berkshire Hathaway Chairman Warren Buffett. The list below doesn’t include George Soros, Michael Bloomberg, Tom Steyer or other billionaires who don’t happen to be in Forbes top ten billionaires, but who nevertheless supported Democratic or socialistic candidates in U.S. elections.

 

ForbesTOP10BillionairesPartyPoliticalSupportTendenciesManufacturedHomeLivingNews

The Democrats are not the same party that they used to be. Neither are the Republicans. Democrats have tilted socialist, and many say so openly.

 

That list of the top ten billionaires includes not just people with enormous wealth, but also those who wield influence over information, media, education, and/or other facets of American life.

It’s for that reason, numbers in our industry – and millions beyond it – are realizing that only the breakup of those oligopolies and monopolies can protect our American Republic.

Note that we didn’t say ‘democracy.’ Yes, there are democratic – direct votes, by the people – elements to our nation. But by law, the U.S. is a Republic. When we pledge allegiance to the flag, it includes the words, “and to the Republic for which it [i.e.: the flag] stands…”

Our publisher is a history buff, in fact, he was an multiple award-winning history major, and had a perfect 4.0 in business that he took as his minor. He saw a quote from a 1938 U.S. Army manual that once made the distinction between the false notion that the U.S. was a pure democracy, when in fact our nation is and always has been since our Constitution was established, a Republic.

That distinction is now missing in many forms of public information.

These are facts, facts, facts. There is no conspiracy implied in reciting facts.

But facts are assiduously avoided by some of the most powerful politicians, as well as among some of the deepest pockets of our nation, and others.

There is media influence in Communist China, where the state openly controls information. The communists always have.  Until the Chinese leadership are forced by circumstances to do otherwise, they will likely will continue to control the flow of information. It makes controlling some 1.4 billion people easier.

There is media influence in America. That control is imperfect, compared to what exists in China, because there is still freedom here. There are conservative, centrist, and leftist media outlets in America. That’s one reason why MHProNews periodically trots out the left-right media infographic, shown below.  It helps readers spot the possible agenda of the source.

 

MediaBiasChartSharylAttkissonLeftRightPostedDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

Full Measure’s Sharyl Attiksson’s media bias chart is useful in sorting out the agendas behind various headlines and news sources. http://www.mhpronews.com/blogs/daily-business-news/no-fire-just-smoke-and-democratic-clinton-supporter-says-enough/

 

 

A Cult of Personalities 

The New York Post said that the Obama’s are becoming a billion-dollar brand. Not unlike the Clintons, they have established a foundation. Also akin to the Clintons, the Obama’s command a large speaking fee.

The New York Post says that the Obamas have some $50 million they will earn from an agreement with Netflix. There’s another $65 million in the estimated value of book deals. Here’s how they stated it, ”In addition to a $65 million book advance and an estimated $50 million deal with Netflix, both of which she [Michelle] shares with husband Barack Obama…”

Michelle is on a high profile book tour. A common factor, says EIB Network talk show host, Rush Limbaugh, in book deals with major names are requirements to do publicity events. TV, radio, live or canned events are arranged with the ‘author.’ Those ‘author’s’ often have ‘ghost’ or other writers and editors in the mix. No one thinks ill of having an editor or ghost writer.

But where the concern should be is these questions.  Why would someone pay such enormous sums simply to have people speak? What message are they sending? Why are they being paid so much? Who gains from their speaking and fame?

 

Glitches…

You can fault MHProNews for typos or a glitch. You may or may not like every topic that we tackle. Or how we frame an issue. Our sole defense is the truth that we put out more content by far than any other MH industry trade media, plus we are doing professional services and client work too, day by day. On slower days, our publisher and editor goes back and re-edits some long columns like this one, just in case.

But on the facts and evidence, we want it all to be accurate and fair.

On each subject, we strive to bring facts, evidence, reason, and ethics into the discussion. Those issues are ones that matter to every one of our industry’s homeowners or to thousands of independent businesses. It’s also important to the millions of Americans who ought to be our industry’s customers, but have been misled into thinking ill of our housing option.

We source across the left-right media divide – and from public officials, or industry sources – for very specific reasons. First, there is the ancient “wheat and chaff” principle. Wheat must be separated from chaff in nature, before wheat is consumed. Ideally, in sourcing a story, the chaff is threshed out, and the wheat is retained.

By citing sources, if a factual error creeps in, then the cause is known. It’s what a good journalist or researcher should always do.

Manufactured homes are a fraction of the price of conventional housing. But the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) misstated that savings a few years back, in advertorials that they paid to have published. Why did MHI pay for that deliberately misleading information in the first place?

After MHProNews repeatedly spotlighted that issue, MHI eventually pivoted away from that, and now they have an infographic that includes a much better visualization of the savings between a conventionally built single-family house and a modern manufactured home. In doing so, MHI correctly pointed to the U.S. Census Bureau data to achieve that comparison. Good, the source was correctly cited.

But where was their acknowledgment or apology to the industry for their advertorials that misstated the savings? Those inaccurate advertorials are still online.

 

 

MHI brags that millions could have seen those stories they paid to place in various news sources. Misleading statistics were used, that readers can still stumble upon.  See the MHI infographic, below. Is that misuse of information emblematic of a larger problem at MHI?

 

ManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoMHIInfographicSnapshotFactCheckDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

 

Why does MHI posture one thing, when they have at various time done quite another? Why all the razzle dazzle, instead of actual performance that can be measured in new home sales? Are MHI’s top 3 staff leaders inept?  Or is there a method and purpose behind that MHI staff leadership madness?

On MHI’s website today, Joe Stegmayer is still listed as their chairman (see graphic, further below). A few years ago, Triad Financial Services President and CEO – Don Glisson, Jr. – stepped aside from being MHI Chairman over a relatively nothing issue that involved blogger George Allen. The issue, per several informed sources, was whether or not Allen would be allowed to speak at an upcoming MHI event. Sources at MHI told the Daily Business News on MHProNews that some staff were strongly opposed to Allen speaking at the event.

But Allen claimed he had been promised a speaking slot.

So, then MHI Chairman Glisson, per those sources, offered a compromise. Give Allen an early morning speaking spot, to keep the claimed promise to the now former community owner and blogger, and thus also limit his exposure to the minimum number of MHI attendees.

That arguably elegant compromise on Allen speaking reportedly brought on a revolt by some, including higher level MHI staff. Why?

Mr. Glisson stepped aside in frustration, essentially saying, ‘I don’t need this aggravation.’

Glisson made no public outcry. He just quietly stepped aside. For those present when that step-down occurred, one minute, Glisson was present, and suddenly, after his decision was shared to select people, he was gone.

Nathan Smith then became MHI Chairman. Later, when TV ads of Smith for SSK Communities reportedly were in violation of federal regulations, did Smith step down? No. When a legal class action was begun by a number of SSK Communities residents, did Smith step down from his role as MHI Chairman? No.

When Tim Williams later became MHI Chairman, and certain troubling reports about Berkshire Hathaway brands in manufactured home lending practices from the Seattle Times became public, did Williams step down? No. When those same Seattle Times reports pointed a finger at Clayton Homes, did Clayton’s Tom Hodges step aside and remove himself from the MHI board? No.

So why would mere allegations about possible SEC violations cause Joe Stegmayer, a former Clayton Homes division president, to step aside as MHI Chairman today? Others cozy with Berkshire Hathaway stayed on. Why should Stegmayer be any different?

 

2018-11-20_1350MHILogoManufacturedHousingInstituteMHILogoDailyBusienssNewsMHproNewsJoeStegmayer

 

The above is telling. Triad’s Glisson has a well earned reputation for being honorable. His firm’s sound business model in manufactured home chattel lending thrived while others in manufactured home lending collapsed in the early 2000s. Track records matter.

MHProNews isn’t saying more or less than what the facts or track records reflect.

How many times has MHI had to pivot from an embarrassing posture? Several, in just recent years, as carefully readers of the Daily Business News know. Where was the transparency that the late Howard Walker said should exist at MHI, that the ELS Vice-Chairman said existed at their publicly traded company?

 

HowardWalkerPhotoELSViceChairmanManufacturedHomeCOmmunitiesManufacturedHousingInstituteExecCommitteeMemberQuoteTransparencyMHProNews

Thoughtful words, worth pondering. 

 

Why won’t Cavco reveal which stock is in question involving Stegmayer and the bombshell SEC probe? Won’t that information come out, sooner or later?

If Cavco can’t say so publicly, due to some SEC reason, and the SEC won’t reveal it either, why doesn’t Cavco not bluntly say so? Why do they use more nuanced, but evasive, language?

Why did Third Avenue Value Fund (TAVFX) sell off all of Cavco’s (CVCO) stocks recently?  Why don’t others in MHVille trade media raise or report on such problematic issues?  ICYMI, or want to later share those details with others, see the report linked below.

 

Hedge Fund’s Cavco Move, and More from Inside MHVille

 

Are there not sufficient reasons for Stegmayer to step aside from his leadership role at MHI?

What is MHI doing to and for our industry’s image or on regulatory issues anyway? How much of what they do are just a fig-leaf – posturing?  Isn’t the bottom line that manufactured home shipments are still at record low levels, a decade after the 2008 meltdown?

 

Figure1MobileManufacturedHomeSalesSHipmentsVsExistingingNewHouseSalesManufacturedHousingiinudstryDataMHProNews

There are a growing number of industry voices that believe that BH/CMH and MHI have by various action/inaction has kept manufactured home sales at historically low levels. Evidence? See Related Reports and videos, linked below, which quotes and cites BH, MHI, CMH, 21st Mortgage Corp, and other sources.

 

Facts matter. As a comparison, why are RVs roaring, while HUD Code manufactured homes are snoring?

 

RVsshipmentsTrailedMH1998WinnebagoDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

KennyLipschutzQuotePoorJobOfLobbyinginMHIndustry-postedMHProNews48thMHINCClist

 

“It’s a Disgrace

President Donald J. Trump has said and done some things that are less than pure. He said prior to his election that he used the rigged system himself, which is why he could fight it – because he knew it first hand.

In short, he was self-revealing.  He’s not claimed to be what he’s not.

Millions mistakenly believe something totally untrue about Russia and the Trump Campaign, if that recent poll noted above is accurate. Again, millions were wrongly led to believe that votes were changed. That was accomplished by merely repeating a false impression for days, weeks, and months on end. Recall that in 2017, Project Veritas had an undercover video with a CNN producer that revealed that the Russia Collusion story was a “nothing burger.” But that same CNN producer said that Russian collusion was good for ratings. Welcome to fake news?

That lie or deception about a phony Russian collusion doesn’t mean that everything CNN does is a lie. But it does mean that what CNN or others in media do must be scrutinized.

Fox News isn’t perfect either. They have people or hosts on that can use claims that likewise are incorrect or even deceive, but at least they often show both sides of a given question.

The answer isn’t to throw up one’s hands and not watch news, or not vote, or not be engaged. That’s a fine outcome for those who arguably pull the strings of millions by media and tech manipulation. Those who are not engaged in solving the problem are de facto a vote for those who are engaging in deceptive and manipulative practices.

The ubiquitous Drudge Report ran a headline quoting from President Trump recently that said that he likes to ‘tell the truth as often’ as he can. Wow.

There are things that world leaders know from intelligence and other sources that they don’t tell their populations. It’s been that way for centuries before the printing press. It is also so since the modern internet, broadcast or cable eras.

The point?

The broad brush of what is real is knowable, but it requires a little common sense, some understanding, a bit of history, etc.

HumanitiesValueBuisnessCriticismDissentWhenGoingAlongGetAlongWhereWhistleblowersDiscouragedBadThingsHappenBusinssesImplodeMarthaCNussbaumPhotoQuote

Design by MHProNews.

 

What a Fed Said to MHProNews

Federal investigators have been on the Berkshire Hathaway trail for years, per the Seattle Times, and reports from federal sources to MHProNews. Warren Buffett himself admitted to being questioned about why he sold out his stocks in Fannie Mae prior to the meltdown.

 

Warren Buffett, Charlie Munger, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Berkshire Hathaway Backstory

 

So, when a federal investigator said to our publisher recently would be no surprise to those who have closely followed this periodic series on MHProNews.

In essence, without defending Buffett, that investigators said that what Buffett – whom one of those investigators referred to as “the Oracle of Omaha” – is doing in manufactured housing, is occurring in other industries too.

Put differently, that Fed said is that what is occurring at MHI, and our manufactured home industry being consolidated by manipulation of the system by major players is only a subset of a greater problem.  Our publisher agreed with that agent.

But that is also why for several years, MHProNews has spotlighted issues outside of MHVille.  Those elements of the FAANGs, for example, either parallel and/or are interconnected to what has purportedly developed in our industry.  Further, as our reports have noted, FAANG firms not only daily touch MHPros and manufactured home owners, some of those same tech giants are getting involved in factory-based construction too.

 

Where Left, Right, and Center Might Agree?

There are voices in the Democratic Party, in the political center, and on the right that are seeing the threat to the nation from big tech. Some believe that Berkshire Hathaway plays a role in that monopolistic/oligopoly threat too, as the federal investigator referred to above, implied.

DougRyanAmericanBankerManufacturedHousingMonopoly-postedDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryProNews

Just one of numerous examples of articles in the mainstream media, about Berkshire Hathaway’s manufactured housing units. FYI, there will be a report, perhaps next week, on Prosperity Now, which was previously known as CFED. Doug Ryan is pro-manufactured homes, but takes issue with several things in manufactured housing – a mixed bag for the industry.

 

There are areas that the 45th President, Donald J. Trump – who has called the Mueller probe a “witch hunt” and “a disgrace” – can work with Democrats and Republicans on that could benefit the vast majority of the nation. Breaking up monopolies is – on paper – one of those areas. It may be the most important one.

 

 

HowClaytonHomesMakesMoneyAustinFrerickTwitterOpenMarketsDailyBusinessNewsManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNews

 

Open Markets Austin Frerick argued that monopolies are the most important issue facing America today.  See two of several tweets by Frerick, above and below.

 

AustinFrerickOpenMarketsAntiTrustAntiMonopolyClaytonHomesWarrenBuffettPredatoryLenderMinoritiesMoreDailyBusinessNewsManufacuredHousingIndustryMHProNews

 

AT&T’s breakup in the 1980s under antitrust action by the federal government was arguably good for the country. The breakup of Berkshire and those FAANG companies could similarly be good for our industry and the nation too. Phone service didn’t end, it got better after the AT&T breakup. Breaking up the monopoly/oligopoly of FAANG and Berkshire could – similar to AT&T’s breakup – lead to a renaissance in American small business, and for our industry too.

 

ScottGallowayNYSternUniversityL2AntiTrustAntiMonopolyDailyBusinessNEwsMHProNews555

 

Note that federal sources tell MHProNews that their investigations include public officials for possible malfeasance.

Pam Danner, JD, are you reading this today?  Just asking…

…and the industry should ask why Danner was given de-facto support and purported cover by MHI.

 

pam-danner-hud-code-manufactured-housing-program-administrator-mhi-2014-summer-meeting-indianapolis-in-alexander-hotel-(c)2014-mhpronews-com-

Pam Danner, JD, HUD Code Manufactured Housing Program Administrator, credit, MHProNews.

 

MHI’s Response to MHProNews and their Naysayers

As part of MHI’s response to our reports and analysis, we have several sources that said that they were pressured not to advertise with MHProNews. Huh? At the time, we’d been a member for years, and had been praised numerous times for our “News, Tips, and Views That Pros Can Use” © coverage by MHI leaders.

George Allen, who at various times was persona non grata at MHI, and other ‘friends’ of MHI have allegedly attempted a smear campaign against our publisher. That has taken place over a period of years, along with others connected to MHI, per sources. Our L.A. ‘Tony’ Kovach addressed that matter directly to Kevin Clayton, Tom Hodges, the top 3 MHI staffers, federal investigator/officials in Washington, D.C., and others. That email is shown below.

 

KevinClaytonTomHodgesDickJennisonLesliGoochRickRobinsonMHIClaytonHomesDailyBusinessNewsMHPronews

Suffice it to say for now that neither the Berkshire Hathaway brands, not MHI, did as requested. We documented that they received this and other messages, and provided the same to officials as noted above. The above began after a report linked here was published, but that may or may not be a coincidence. 

The above has also been provided to federal investigators, who as previously noted, had already been looking into the matters at MHI, and how they relate to Knoxville and Omaha.  That’s been going on for several years.

There will be a special Masthead possibly tomorrow evening. Tune in and check it out, won’t you?

 

 

The World Didn’t End…

When Legacy Housing, an MHI member, advertised their events last fall on MHProNews, did that doom them? Hardly.

Instead, they had two successful fall events.  That is to be expected when you market via the runaway most read-publication in the entire industry. In their public filings for an IPO with the SEC, Legacy Housing said they had their biggest backlog in their firm’s history.

 

Legacy Housing IPO, Lending Tree, & New HUD Ruling Updates

Arguably, those who get spotlighted on MHProNews not only benefit from the exposure, but they are safer from the FAANGs, Berkshire’s and MHI’s of the world.  Again, for some evidence of that, see the upcoming Masthead.

  • Sound information,
  • the rule of law,
  • access to capital,
  • placement,
  • lending, and
  • a level playing field will liberate manufactured housing.

There is, to be accurate, both subjective and objective truth. For example, you may like mustard and ketchup; our publisher dislikes both of those. Those are subjective truths, and in those matters of taste, your truth and ours can collide, but that’s harmless.

Then there are objective realities.

Has MHI failed the majority of its own members?

Several voices at various times have called them out for exactly those kinds of problems. A partial list is insightful.

  • Frank Rolfe,
  • Marty Lavin,
  • Bob Crawford,
  • NMHCO leaders,
  • Titus Dare, and
  • even the MHI exiting president, Chris Stinebert,

among others.

Perhaps because MHProNews has pulled those and other disparate voices into one place, MHI and several Berkshire brands have purportedly targeted our publication for elimination. If they could have disproven our claims, why didn’t they?  So instead of disproving our concerns and allegations, they go after sponsors, or resort to phony smear tactics?

For those who grasp the reality of the concerns, ponder this. Smoking Gun 3, or more recently, the detailed report linked below, reflects a series of facts. Money and evidence trails are apparently difficult for them to deny.  Each fact-based, logic-laced report arguably points to this Occam’s Razor style conclusion.

MHI and their Berkshire brands try to pick winners and losers in our industry.

Why did MHI publish a community count data that agreed with MHVillage, instead of Frank Rolfe’s or George Allen’s manufactured home community totals or estimates? Favoritism? Winner and losers?

 

Frank Rolfe, Dave Reynolds, George Allen, Manufactured Home Community Controversy Continues

Why are MHAction – paid via various money channels by Warren Buffett, George Soros and other deep pockets on the left – targeting

  • ELS,
  • Rolfe & Company,
  • and Blackstone?
  • Why don’t they target Tom Lackey and his defenders/trainers?

The truth is there, to be found, when one follows the money and the evidence trail.

But it takes time to ferret out the facts. Then it takes time to frame that truth in ways that make sense to a growing numbers of industry professionals and investors.

We’ve come into the holiday season. Thanksgiving is almost here. We’ll see if or how much readership might take a short break. But normally, if so, it’s usually a modest one (about 10 percent). Our competition in MHVille trade publishing would only dream of having that potentially modest fall off as being their total readership.

That’s true despite the reported dirty tricks by those who don’t want reports like this available.  But our readers see the value.

 

DearTonySoheylaNoGreaterResourceSpeakstoIssuesOpportunitiesWeFaceAsIndependentRetailersGusRodriguezTejasHomesTX

Gus’ message came in response to a series of exposes on issues within manufactured housing, as well as tips, strategies and opportunities.

 

When your opponents uses the tactics of:

  • Duck
  • Dodge
  • Dismiss
  • Detract
  • Distract and
  • Defame

SpinMisdirectionRedHerringDuckDodgDismissDistractDetractDefame6DsManufacturedHOusiungInstitute

you can guess that as a publisher, you are over their targets, catching flak.

And you, faithful reader? Knowledge is potential power. Use it, share it, and base your decisions upon reality, not illusions, lies, or costly faked impressions.

If they drove thousands of others out of business or who sold out for less, then, why would you think they won’t do it to you, too?

Affordable Housing, the Visible, Yet Mysterious Struggle for an Obvious Solution, Case Examples

Thus

  • MHARR – which sticks to facts, facts, facts and rarely has to pivot, exists for independent manufactured home producers; and
  • the new NMHCO trade group for communities, have or are forming.

 

Nathan Smith, SSK Communities, and Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) Slam New National Manufactured Home Communities Group in Written Statement

 

Will independent retailer and other MHVille professionals rise up, as NMHCO is striving to do?

The time to prepare for 2019 and 2020 are now. Reports like this are wake up calls.  Don’t just read, use the information, double check the facts, and then plan accordingly. “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

Related Reports:

Machiavellian “Godfather” – Sam Zell, Warren Buffett, Capital, Lending and Crossed Lines in Manufactured Housing

Cavco Shareholder Suits Prepping, CVCO, SEC, Insider Responses to Growing Scandal

November 15th, 2018 Comments off

 

CavcoShareholderSuitsPreppingCVCOSECInsiderResponsesGrowingScandalHolzerHolzerLawLogoKaseklaLawLogoCavcoLogo

Cavco and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have both responded to inquiries from the Daily Business News on MHProNews. Before turning to their comments, the larger news item is the start of the headline above. At least two law firms are calling on Cavco Industries (CVCO) shareholders to contact them, as they advance investigations that aim to sue-for-damages for wrongdoings by the publicly trade manufactured and modular home company.

 

The “Debacle” at Cavco

As a follow up to last night’s report, linked below, an insider with Cavco has called the developments at the Phoenix, AZ based firm a “debacle.”

Other sources at Cavco with knowledge have declined specific comments, perhaps knowing that the matter has already harmed the value of any shares that they personally hold.

 

Manufactured Housing Institute on Cavco Industries, ex-Chairman Joe Stegmayer SEC “Debacle”

 

Our report last night report last night included the following:

 

CVCOJoeStegmayerStockDropAfterSECCOnnectedShakeupManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

Shareholder Alert” from 2 Law Firms

Their news release opened with, “SHAREHOLDER ALERT: Investigation of Cavco Announced by Holzer & Holzer, LLC

HolzerHolzerGoogleSummaryClassActionAttorneyDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

It continued as follows:

Holzer & Holzer, LLC is investigating whether certain statements made by Cavco Industries, Inc. (“Cavco” or the “Company”) (NASDAQ: CVCO) complied with federal securities laws. On November 8, 2018, Cavco announced that an internal investigation had identified certain violations of the Company’s policy related to securities trading activities by former CEO, Joseph Stegmayer. The price of Cavco common stock fell significantly following this announcement.

If you purchased Cavco common stock and suffered a loss on that investment, you are encouraged to contact Corey D. Holzer, Esq. at cholzer@holzerlaw.com or Marshall P. Dees, Esq. at mdees@holzerlaw.com, or by toll-free telephone at (888) 508-6832 to discuss your legal rights.”

 

HolzerHolzerAttorneyForInvestorsDailyBusinessNewsMHproNews

 

Another media release from a different law firm provided to MHProNews said the following.

 

KasekalaLawLLCLogoManufacturedHousingIndustryDaiyBusinessNewsMHProNews

All images and content are provided under fair use news media guidelines.

SHAREHOLDER ALERT: Kaskela Law LLC Announces Investigation of Cavco Industries, Inc. and Encourages Investors with Losses in Excess of $100,000 to Contact the Firm – CVCO

What follows is the body of their media statement.

Nov 14, 2018

Legal Newswire POWERED BY LAW.COM

RADNOR, Pa.,  — Kaskela Law LLC is investigating Cavco Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVCO) (“Cavco” or the “Company”) on behalf of investors.  The investigation seeks to determine whether Cavco and certain of its officers and/or directors made false and/or misleading statements to investors, and whether Cavco investors have been harmed as a result.

Cavco investors with financial losses in excess of $100,000 are encouraged to contact Kaskela Law LLC (D. Seamus Kaskela, Esq.) at (888) 715 – 1740, or via email at skaskela@kaskelalaw.com, to discuss this investigation and their legal rights and options.  Additional information about this investigation may also be found at http://kaskelalaw.com/case/cavco-industries-inc/

On November 8, 2018, Cavco disclosed that “on August 20, 2018, the Company received a subpoena from the SEC’s Division of Enforcement requesting certain documents relating to, among other items, trading in the stock of [a] Public Company.  On October 1, 2018, the SEC sent a subpoena for documents and testimony to former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Joseph Stegmayer regarding similar issues.  At this time, the Company believes that Mr. Stegmayer traded in certain publicly traded stock in his personal accounts as well as in accounts held by Cavco at a time when the Company had agreed to refrain from such trading. The Company intends to cooperate fully with the SEC’ s investigation.  Effective November 8, 2018, Mr. Stegmayer stepped down as Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company after an internal investigation, conducted by independent legal counsel to the Audit Committee of the Board of Directors, identified certain violations of Company policy related to securities trading activities conducted by Mr. Stegmayer. The internal investigation remains ongoing.”  

Following this news, shares of the Company’s common stock declined $49.48 per share, or over 23%, to close on November 9, 2018 at $165.20 per share, on heavy trading volume. 

Cavco investors with financial losses in excess of $100,000, and individuals with information relevant to this investigation, are encouraged to contact Kaskela Law LLC at (888) 715 – 1740 or via http://kaskelalaw.com/case/cavco-industries-inc/ Kaskela Law LLC exclusively represents investors in state and federal actions throughout the country.  For additional information about Kaskela Law LLC please visit www.kaskelalaw.com.  This notice may constitute attorney advertising in certain jurisdictions.

URL : http://www.kaskelalaw.com

Contact Information:

Kaskela Law LLC

Seamus Kaskela, Esq.

201 King of Prussia Road

Suite 650

Radnor, PA 19087

(484) 258 – 1585

(888) 715 – 1740

skaskela@kaskelalaw.com

www.kaskelalaw.com

The Kaskela website says the following about the firm’s specialty and services.

Kaskela Law represents current and former shareholders of publicly traded corporations in securities fraud class actions, shareholder derivative actions, and merger & acquisition litigation. The firm exclusively litigates cases on behalf of investors on a contingency basis – advancing all costs and fees until the successful completion of a case.”

 

Cavco, SEC Responses to MHProNews Inquiries

Joe_Stegmayer_Cavco_credit_MHProNews

Joe Stegmayer.

What follows are the replies from media spokesmen for Cavco and the SEC.

They could be summed up as ‘polite, artful dodges,’ but we asked for an attorney to review those replies, which will follow further below, as they are insightful.

That outside attorney’s off-the-record responses are likely to be of wide interest to manufactured housing industry professionals, as well as to Cavco shareholders. As a disclosure, it should be noted that the principles of MHProNews hold no positions in that company.

Note that John Lovallo was the Cavco designated contact for this matter involving ex-chairman, Joe Stegmayer.

Lovallo was asked about the threat of litigation being raised by the law firms above. As of this time, no reply has come to that inquiry.

However, Lovallo did reply to prior inquiries by MHProNews, as follows.

First, the only public statement relating to the findings of the independent investigation and SEC subpoenas is included in the Company’s SEC filings and public disclosures.

The only additional public/on the record statement I can provide on the SEC matter is as follows:

“The Company is fully cooperating with the SEC’s investigation 

Related to your other comments our additional public/on the record statement is as follows:

“It is business as usual at the Company. Cavco continues to build quality, energy efficient homes for the modern-day home buyer, and team members are focused on providing customers and partners best in class service. 

Cavco is a strong Company and is strategically positioned to continue to be an industry leader under Dan Urness’s leadership. And, as reported last week, the Company’s fiscal second quarter 2019 financial results were strong. 

Mr. Urness and his team are focused on continuing to execute. The Board of Directors fully supports Cavco’s current strategy and is confident that Dan Urness is the right person to build on the Company’s success.” 

You can attribute the above statements to John Lovallo spokesperson for Cavco Industries.”

 

A follow up questions that asked which stock(s) were involved brought a polite, prompt reference back to the previous statement.

Per Lavollo, “Here is the link to our public filing (10Q), which covers our public disclosure on the SEC matter – https://investor.cavco.com/public/phhweb/gallery/userupload/ir-doc-580/cvco_2018.9.29_10q_final.pdf 

Please see page 25, paragraph 4, where it states: 

“Legal Matters. On August 20, 2018, the Company received a subpoena from the SEC’s Division of Enforcement requesting certain documents relating to, among other items, trading in the stock of another public company. On October 1, 2018, the SEC sent a subpoena for documents and testimony to Joseph Stegmayer, the Company’s former Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, regarding similar issues. At this time, the Company believes that Mr. Stegmayer traded in certain publicly traded stock in his personal accounts as well as in accounts held by the Company at a time when the Company had agreed to refrain from such trading. The Company has initiated an independent investigation and intends to cooperate fully with the SEC’s investigation.” 

This is our public disclosure related to the SEC matter.

John

John Lovallo

Practice Chair – Financial Communications

 

JohnLovalloPhotoLevickLogoCommunicatingTrustCAVCOIndustriesCVCODailyBusinessNewsMHProNews600

 

About Lovallo, Levick and Cavco

Cavco Industries has their own media relations person. That normal press relations person at Cavco was also contacted, but allowed John Lovallo to make all of their formal replies in this Stegmayer/SEC matter.

Why is that significant?

Because Lovallo works for Levick, which their site describes as follows.

We are the leading public relations firm that establishes and protects trust. LEVICK deploys uniquely qualified teams – armed with the instincts, influence, and experience needed to win your battles in an increasingly complex and challenging world.

As the screen capture below reflects, Levick is into “crisis management.”

 

LevickCommunicatingTrustCrisisManagementDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

 

Put differently, it’s arguably recognition by management at Cavco that they have a crisis, which they are trying to manage as best they can. That’s not implying something sinister. Rather, it’s perhaps an intelligent option to attempt to protect a firm and its shareholders.

But that in turn arguably underscores what our well-placed source told MHProNews, namely, that this is a “debacle” at Cavco.

Given Joe Stegmayer’s role as MHI Chairman, it’s a “debacle” that arguably reflects beyond Cavco.

Which brings us to the SEC.

Christopher Carofine, at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, told MHProNews that the organization “Decline to comment.”  That was in response to this inquiry.

Cavco’s press release

 

https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2018/11/08/1648646/0/en/Cavco-Industries-Annouces-Executive-Leadership-Changes.html

says in part as follows:

The Company also announced that it had received a subpoena from the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Division of Enforcement (“SEC”) requesting certain documents relating to, among other items, trading of the stock of another public company. Subsequent to sending the Company a subpoena, the SEC sent a subpoena for documents and testimony to Joseph Stegmayer, regarding similar issues. The Company has initiated an independent investigation and intends to cooperate fully with the SEC’s investigation. Please see Part II, Item 1, Legal Proceedings section of the Company’s quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the period ended September 29, 2018, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission contemporaneously with the issuance of this press release, for additional information regarding this matter.”

Our question is this.  Which company was the “trading of the stock of another public company” referring to, please?”

But the next direct ‘no comment’ could, depending on the answer to the issues raised herein, be a hidden story-behind-the-Cavco-trading-story.

MHProNews asked the SEC’s Carofine, “Are you investigating possibly AntiTrust issues? Involving Clayton Homes (Berkshire Hathaway), Cavco and Stegmayer, who is still the Manufactured Housing Institute chair?”

Carofine’s reply?

Decline to comment.”

 

Outside Counsel OTR Feedback to Above

ConfidentialNewsTipsOKTipsIreportMHNews@MHMSM-comGraphic

To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP in the subject line.

According to an outside attorney asked to review the puzzle pieces laid out above, “the key language to me — and potentially the key to solving the mystery — is the language “at a time when the company had agreed to refrain from such trading.”  That would indicate that there was some previous issue with the SEC or other regulators — i.e., “agreed” with who?  And why?  Would the trading have been legal but for that agreement?  Did the agreement grow out of a previous enforcement action? When?  Probably the agreement was in writing.  Where is it?  Wouldn’t such an agreement be germane to investors?  Was it disclosed?  When?  If not, why not?

 

Another legal comment indicated that this may or may not connect to concerns by some in the industry that a masked antitrust issue may be at play.

It’s a concern that is denied by those asked at Cavco.

But Stegmayer, who is a former division president for Clayton Homes, per some industry sources, needed help to get his early acquisitions of other manufactured home firms at Cavco ‘done.’  “Their [Cavco’s] balance sheet didn’t support” their early acquisition, was an argument made by one such source, when MHProNews asked for evidence of their concern.

CavcoIndustriesCVCOFocusTransformationManufacturedHousingIndustryDailyBusinessNewsMHProNews

From Cavco IR presentation.

It should be noted that prior to receiving documents on 21st used in Smoking Gun 3 (see related reports, further below) and other MHProNews articles, those was just another unconfirmed claim. Obviously, those documents transformed a mere claim into a noteworthy purported path to consolidate manufactured housing.  So, if there is specific evidence about Cavco and their acquisitions, it should be presented to investigators or MHProNews, which can be done off-the-record.

An attorney indicated that the pending CVCO shareholder suits, if they aren’t settled out of court, could reveal information on that antitrust, MHI, Clayton, or other subjects in discovery.  Because these have possible antitrust and/or RICO implications, and could be a thorny issue for the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) too.

MHProNews will continue to monitor this issue and expects relevant updates from contacts with the various operations noted above. That’s this morning’s MH “Industry News, Tips, and Views Pros Can Use,” where “We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

(Related Reports are further below. Third-party images and content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

1) To sign up in seconds for our MH Industry leading emailed news updates, click here.

ManufacturedHomeIndustry#1HeadlineNewsMHProNews

To see a sample of our emailed news update, click here. To sign up for the factory-built home industry’s #1 headline news, click here or the graphic above.

2) To pro-vide a News Tips and/or Commentary, click the link to the left. Please note if comments are on-or-off the record, thank you.

3) Marketing, Web, Video, Consulting, Recruiting and Training Re-sources

SoheylaKovachDailyBusinessNewsMHProNewsMHLivingNewsSubmitted by Soheyla Kovach to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.com. Soheyla is a managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com.

 

 

 

Related Reports:

Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative

 

Smoking Gun 3 – Warren Buffett, Kevin Clayton, Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage Corp Tim Williams – Manufactured Home Lending, Sales Grab?