Lumber Liquidators

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Lumber Liquidators, Inc.
Traded asNYSELL
S&P 600 Component
FoundedStoughton, Massachusetts, U.S. (1994)
FounderTom Sullivan
HeadquartersToano, Virginia, U.S.
Number of locations
420 (September 2019)
Area served
United States, Canada
Key people
Dennis R. Knowles (CEO)[1], Tom Sullivan (Founder, Chairman)
ProductsHardwood flooring
Decrease US$ $-57 million (2019)[2]
Total assetsIncrease US$ 476 million (2019)[2]
Number of employees
2,100 (2019)[2]

Lumber Liquidators Flooring (stylized as LUMBER LIQUIDATOR$) is an American retailer of hardwood flooring.

Lumber Liquidators store, Ypsilanti, Michigan



Lumber Liquidators Flooring was started in 1994 by Tom Sullivan, a building contractor who began purchasing excess wood from other companies. He then resold the wood from the back of a trucking firm's yard in Stoughton, Massachusetts. Three years later in 1996, the company found their niche market in hardwood flooring. On January 5, 1996, the company's first store opened in West Roxbury, Massachusetts, and sold 150 square feet of floors on the first day. By August of that year, they opened up a second store in Hartford, Connecticut.[3]


The company has grown to be one of the largest retailers of hardwood flooring in the United States.[citation needed] It expanded to more than 375 Lumber Liquidators stores with over 1,000 employees in 47 states and Canada. It also launched online e-commerce, catalogs, and its Virginia call center. By the end of 2018 the company was operating over 415 stores across North America.

The company is currently headquartered in Toano, Virginia. The company's CEO is Dennis R. Knowles. The firm is listed and trades under NYSELL. In 2019 the company announced it would be moving the corporate offices from Toano to Richmond VA.

In 2009, Lumber Liquidators began receiving sponsorship from ScrippsHGTV, DIY Network and ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.[4]

The company expanded into Canada in the fourth quarter of 2010. The expansion plan was to add 36 to 40 stores.[5]


A 2013 report by the Environmental Investigation Agency revealed that Lumber Liquidators' indiscriminate and poor sourcing practices resulted in the destruction of critically endangered tiger habitats and forests.[6]

Further investigation led to the conviction of a Russian supplier in 2014. Shortly after the conviction Lumber Liquidators lost about twenty percent in stock value for potential violation of the Lacey Act. During 2015, the company was involved in controversy regarding the level of formaldehyde in the Chinese-made laminate flooring that it was selling.[7] A number of class action lawsuits were brought on by customers, due to the formaldehyde issue and other customer service issues.

The company appointed John M. Presley as Chief Executive Officer.[8] The company's founder, Tom Sullivan, served as interim CEO following the resignation and was replaced in November 2015 by John Presley.[9]

On October 22, 2015, Lumber Liquidators pleaded guilty in federal court to the illegal importation of hardwood flooring.[10] In February 2016, a federal judge sentenced the company to $13.15 million in penalties, consisting of $7.8 million in criminal fines, $3.15 million in civil forfeiture, $1 million in criminal forfeiture, and $1.2 million to conservation organizations.[11] It was the largest financial penalty ever issued for violating the Lacey Act of 1900.[12][13]


  1. ^ Stynes, Tess (Nov 7, 2016). "Lumber Liquidators Announces New CEO". Wall Street Journal.
  2. ^ a b c "2012 Form 10-K, Lumber Liquidators Holdings Inc". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
  3. ^ "About Us". Lumber Liquidators. 2015. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  4. ^ Miley, Marissa (February 24, 2009). "Sponsorships Help Insulate Lumber Liquidators From Housing Crisis". Advertising Age. New York. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  5. ^ City, James (April 29, 2010). "Lumber Liquidators expanding into Canada". Daily Press. Newport News. Retrieved March 26, 2015.[dead link]
  6. ^ "Liquidating the Forests". Environmental Investigation Agency. Washington, D.C. August 14, 2014. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  7. ^ Lumber Liquidators shares spike as critics back off," by Everett Rosenfeld, CNBC, December 14, 2015, Retrieved December 17, 2015.
  8. ^ Yu, Roger (May 21, 2015). "Lumber Liquidators CEO resigns 'unexpectedly'". USA TODAY. Retrieved 21 May 2015.
  9. ^ "Lumber Liquidators Names A New CEO As Sales Slump Persists". Forbes. Retrieved 2015-11-04.
  10. ^ "Lumber Liquidators pleads guilty to environmental crimes, agrees to pay more than $13M," by Everett Rosenfeld, CNBC, October 22, 2015, Retrieved December 19, 2015.
  11. ^ Bomey, Nathan. "Lumber Liquidators sentenced in wood import scheme". USA Today. Retrieved 1 February 2016.
  12. ^ Huang, Jiayue (22 October 2015). "Lumber Liquidators pays $13.2 million for environmental crimes". USA Today. Archived from the original on 2015-12-08. Retrieved 2019-08-25.
  13. ^ "Lumber Liquidators pleads guilty to environmental crimes Associated Press.html". Los Angeles Times. Associated Press. Oct 22, 2015. Retrieved 2019-08-25.

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