Trex Company, Inc.

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Trex Company, Inc.
Traded as NYSETREX
S&P 600 Component
Industry Consumer Discretionary
Founded 1996 (1996)
Headquarters Winchester, VA
Area served
U.S.A., International
Key people
James E. Cline
(president and CEO)[1]
Products decking, railing
Revenue Increase US$ 565 million (2017)[2]
Increase US$ 142.4 million (2017)[3]
Increase US$ 95.1 million (2017)[4]
Total assets Increase US$ 326.2 million (2017)[5]
Number of employees

Trex Company, Inc. known to global consumers and others simply as Trex or Trex Decking, is the leading recycled materials manufacturer of wood-alternative decking, railings and other outdoor items.[6] It has been a public company since 1999 and trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “TREX”. The company was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in Winchester, VA, USA.[7] With manufacturing facilities in Fernley, Nevada and Winchester, Virginia, the company’s products are sold in 29 countries. Trex products are carried by approximately 6,700 retail locations worldwide.[8]

According to public documents, the company is the world’s largest manufacturer of wood-alternative decking and railing,[9] with approximate 2017 annual revenues reported of $565 million[10], annual operating income of $95.1 million and net income of $326.2 million[11]. James E. Cline was named president and CEO of Trex effective August 17, 2015. Bryan H. Fairbanks was named vice president and CFO effective August 17, 2015. Key executives of Trex Decking include; James E. Cline, president and chief executive officer; Bryan H. Fairbanks, vice president and chief financial officer; Ron Kaplan, chairman; Jay Scripter, vice president of operations, Chris Gerhard, vice president of sales; Adam Zambanini, vice president of marketing; Bill Gupp, chief administrative officer, general counsel and secretary.[12][13][14][15]

Trex Composite Decking[edit]

Trex Composite Decking

Trex is widely considered as one of the inventors of composite decking made from recyclable materials.[16] The idea for a process and product created to maximize the use of materials that would otherwise wind up in landfills is credited to inventors Kjell-Ake Gustafsson, of Binghamton, NY; John J. Muller, of Winchester, VA; and Roger A. Wittenberg of Newton, PA.[17]

Company Patent[edit]

The first patent for a “Method of Producing a Wood-Thermoplastic Composite Material” was filed as U.S. Patent number 5746958 in March 1995 and granted in May 1998. The Assignee was Trex Company LLC, operating in Winchester, VA.[17] The process abstract for the creation of composite decking is: “A method for producing a wood-thermoplastic composite material using a high bulk density feedstock. Since the feedstock is easy to handle it provides manufacturers with lots of control over the process. Prompted by the prospect of environmental regulations mandating recycled materials, this process uses spent sawdust and plastic material rather than disposing of it.”[17]

Manufacturing Processes[edit]

Trex continues to employ a process that combines different materials, mostly wood and plastic, that are formed to create a product that has the appearance of wood. The wood content in Trex products is largely wood byproducts like sawdust, wood pallets, wood chips and wood fiber. The polyethylene plastic continues to be mostly recycled materials from commonly discarded items like stretch wrap, packaging films, grocery and retail bags and case/carton/product overwraps.[18] Trex uses about 100,000 tons of waste polyethylene film each year and claims to keep 200,000 tons of plastic and hardwood scraps out of American landfills each year.[19] Over 120,000 pieces of post consumer film (packaging, bags, overwraps, etc.) can be used to create a 500-square-foot Trex deck.[20] The components are mixed and a pigment and preservative are added during the process. The mixture is then heated, formed into a board shape, and cooled.[18]

Transcend Decking[edit]

In 2009 Trex introduced a ‘Transcend’ line of decking [21] that is a co-extruded composite decking product that includes a shell around the composite boards on three sides to protect the boards from staining, fading and scratching.[22] The Trex Transcend line of decking claims a recycled content rate of 95.4%.[23]


Transcend® Porch Flooring and Railing System

Trex products include:[24]

  • Elevations® Steel Deck Framing
  • Trex® Rain Escape® Deck Drainage System
  • Transcend® Decking and Railing
  • Enhance® Decking
  • Select® Decking and Railing
  • Transcend® Porch Flooring and Railing System
  • Trex® Outdoor Furniture™
  • Trex® Outdoor Lighting™
  • Trex® Outdoor Storage™
  • Trex® Pergola™
  • Trex® Spiral Stairs™
  • TrexTrim™
  • Trex® Seclusions® Fencing

Environmental Record[edit]

Trex promotes an environmental stance as part of its commercial appeal in the marketplace.[25] In public materials, Trex Company, Inc. cites that no trees are cut down to make Trex decking products; that the company uses vegetable-based oil hydraulics in transportation trailers; and that it recycles factory waste back into the manufacturing line.[24]

Recycled Components[edit]

Trex composite decking contains 97% recycled content and offers verification by ICC-ES.[26] In July 2010 Trex received a Verification of Attributes Report (VAR-1011) from the International Code Council Evaluation Service (ICC-ES) under the Sustainable Attributes Verification and Evaluation Program. The verification validates Trex’s wood-alternative products are manufactured with a minimum of 95.4% recycled content. Trex claims is the first composite decking manufacturer to obtain this certification.[26]

Environmental Affiliations[edit]

Trex has been a member of the Green Building Council, a trade group promoting environmentally friendly building practices, (USGBC) since 2009. USGBC is best known for the widely recognized LEED program (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design).[27]

Through the LEED point-based system, the use of Trex decking and railing products add points based on the percentage of recycled product content.[24]

Environmental Programs[edit]

Trex conducts and participates in eco-friendly educational and recycling programs in various parts of the United States.[25] Since 2006, students at selected schools throughout the East Coast and Midwest have participated in a ‘Trex Plastic Bag Challenge’ (recently renamed ‘Plastic Film Recycling Challenge’[24] ). Students collect plastic bags in exchange for a gift of Trex benches to participating schools.[28]

The company has also provided in-kind contributions, financial assistance and expertise to environmental projects around the country. These include:

Environmental Recognition[edit]

Trex corporate participation in environmental efforts, coupled with its eco-friendly product profile, has led to recognition by governments, publications and trade groups.

These include:

  • The 2013 ‘Green Award’ from Washingtonian Magazine. The award recognizes citizens, companies and organizations in the DC Metro area working to improve the environment and encourage eco-friendly living.[32]
  • The Green Builder Media’s 2013 Reader’s Choice Awards, earning more than 40% of the vote for the ‘greenest’ decking in the industry.[33]
  • The ‘Excellence in Plastics Recycling’ award from the Society of Plastic Engineers Recycling Division. The award is given based on plastic volume, type and the success of the resulting products.[34]
  • In 2005 Trex was given the ‘Green Award’ by Winslow Management Company in recognition of companies that contribute positively to both the environment and shareholders.[35]
  • The Governor of Virginia’s Environmental Excellence First Place Award. Trex has received this award twice. First, in 2001, for building a nature trail on Teddy Roosevelt Island in Arlington, VA and again in 2003 for ‘Outstanding Environmental Project’ in the Smaller Manufacturer’s category.[36]

Industry Recognition[edit]

  • Trex was awarded the 2017 Builder Brand Use Study top brand in three composite/PVC subcategories, including Brand Familiarity, Brand Used Most and Brand Used in the Past Two Years.[37]
  • Trex received the 2017 Best of Houzz Design Award [38]
  • Trex was awarded top brand in all four composite/PVC subcategories in 2016 Builder Brand Use Study, including Quality, Brand Familiarity, Brand Used Most and Brand Used in the Past Two Years.[39]
  • Trex won 2016 Design Journal’s Awards for Design Excellence (ADEX) [40]
  • Trex Outdoor Storage™ – ADEX Platinum Award
  • Trex Pergola™ “Air” – ADEX Platinum Award
  • Trex Pergola “Vision” – ADEX Gold Award
  • Trex received the 2016 Publicity Club of Chicago – Gold Award, Social Media Communications [41]
  • Trex won a 2016 Best of Houzz Design Award.[42]
  • Trex won the 2016 North American Deck & Railing Association (NADRA) National Deck Competition, including 17 awards for TrexPros and First Place Overall.[43]
  • Trex earned a 2015 & 2016 Readers' Choice award from Green Builder magazine for greenest product in the decking category[44]
  • Trex won six 2015 ADEX (Award for Design Excellence) awards: three Platinum Awards. and three Gold Awards for Design Excellence[45]
  • Trex Outdoor Lighting - Platinum Award
  • Trex Aluminum Gates - Platinum Award
  • Trex Transcend in Island Mist - Platinum Award
  • Trex ADA-Compliant Handrails - Gold Award
  • Trex Spiral Stairs - Gold Award
  • Trex Transcend in Havana Gold - Gold Award
  • Trex named number one in all categories in "Builder" Magazine's 2015 Builder Brand Use Study[46]
  • Trex recognized by “Builder Magazine” 2015 Brand Use Study for top spot in Composite/PVC division for:[47]
  • "Brand Familiarity,"
  • "Brand Used in the Past Two Years"
  • "Brand Used Most" within the Decking Category
  • "Quality Rating"
  • Ocean Home magazine honored Trex as Best Decking on their 2015 Platinum List [48]
  • Trex Outdoor Deck Storage was chosen by the This Old House as one of 2015’s top 100 Best New Home Products [49]
  • Trex won eight awards in Remodeling magazines' 2015 Brand Use Study[50]
  • Trex awarded 2015 Hardware+Builder Supply Dealer's Golden Hammer Award in the decking category
  • Trex Spiral Stairs named a 2014 Best New Product by Professional Remodeler Magazine [51]
  • Trex Company named a Top 2014 Workplace by the Washington Post in their annual feature, released on June 22, 2014[52]
  • Trex Elevations & Trex Pergola named by “Professional Builder” and “Professional Remodeler” trade journals as “101 Best New Products” 2013 in the Decking/Outdoor Living category.[53]
  • Trex sweeps composite decking category in “Remodeling” magazines 2013 brand study for fifth consecutive year.[54]
  • Trex Chairman, president and CEO, Ron Kaplan Receives "E-3" Executive Award from Emerald Asset Management during the Twentieth Annual Emerald Groundhog Day Investment Forum in Philadelphia, PA on February 7, 2013.[55]
  • Transcend Decking & Railing featured in the March issue of “ProSales” magazine for 2010 Editors Choice.[56]
  • Decking: Trex tied for #1 in Brand Familiarity, Brand Used in the Past Two Years, Brand Used the Most, Highest Quality Brand
  • Railing: #1 Brand Familiarity, #1 Brand Used in the Past Two Years, #1 Brand Used the Most, #1 Highest Quality Brand
  • Trex won a GAIA award, the Middle East’s premiere environmental award [57]


Lawsuit: A manufacturing problem at the Trex manufacturing facility in Fernley, Nevada led to the production of some decking boards from 2002 to 2007 that were prone to surface flaking. These boards were sold throughout 16 Western states in the U.S. and resulted in a class action suit against the company.[58] In a settlement approved in 2010[59] Trex agreed to replace any decking boards, including some resulting labor costs, for decking affected by surface flaking.[58]

Company history[edit]

Year Event
  • Roger Wittenberg combined sawdust and plastic bags to create park benches and, later, decking[9]
  • Mobil Chemical Co. acquired Wittenberg’s technology and later that same year Trex Company LLC was formed after a buyout of the Mobil division that owned the technology[9]
  • Trex established its corporate headquarters in Winchester, VA[7]
  • Company IPO on New York Stock Exchange NYSE:TREX[7]
  • Trex opened a second manufacturing facility in Fernley, NV[7]
  • Trex created the TrexPro program, providing installation and sales training to pre-screened contractors in U.S.[7]
  • Trex introduced a line of railing products to complement the composite decking offering
  • Trex introduced the Accents decking line
  • Trex introduced Seclusions Fencing[60]
  • Trex introduced the Escapes decking line[61]
  • Trex introduced Transcend decking with protective shell technology
  • Trex introduced Trex Hideaway Universal Fastener, which installs to connect composite boards without visible surface screw heads[62]
  • Trex introduced Trex Outdoor Furniture
  • Trex introduced Trex Deck Lighting[62]
  • Trex introduced Trex RainEscape from a licensing agreement with Dri-Decking Enterprises LLC[63]
  • Trex acquired Iron Deck Corporation and adds Elevations Steel Deck Framing to its product line[64]
  • Through a licensing agreement with Backyard America, Trex adds Pergola kits to its product line
  • Trex introduced Transcend Porch Flooring[62]
  • Trex began distributing Enhance, a mid-tier decking line in new colors – Beach Dune (brown) and Clam Shell (grey)
  • Trex began marketing internationally
  • Trex introduced Reveal aluminum railing and Select decking and railing for its 2013 product line[62]


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