BUILDER Honors PulteGroup and DSLD

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Companies are Recognized as 2011’s Fastest-Growing Public and Private Home Builder Respectively

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“PulteGroup had the courage to abandon old business models that had stopped working,” said Denise Dersin, BUILDER’s editor in chief. “Price, quality, and scheduling are what separates DSLD from its competitors in Louisiana and Mississippi."

BUILDER, the leading media brand for residential construction, honored PulteGroup and DSLD as the fastest-growing public and private home builders in 2011 during the 26th annual BUILDER 100 Awards presentation in New York on May 15. Both companies were recognized for their compound annual growth rate over a three-year period.

Though the phrase “fastest-growing home builder” may seem like an oxymoron—especially among public companies, which have reported record losses during the last four years—some would say it was easy for PulteGroup to become the fastest growing public builder. All it had to do was merge with Centex in late 2009. But the deal was the easy part; integrating the two companies’ operations smoothly, while maintaining growth, was the real feat.

Integration wasn’t the only difficult task undertaken by Bloomfield Hills, Michigan-based PulteGroup. The company also changed long-time business practices to increase its profitability. It increased its gross profit margins every quarter in 2011, and by the fourth quarter, it logged an 18.5 percent adjusted gross margin—its highest in five years.

“PulteGroup had the courage to abandon old business models that had stopped working,” said Denise Dersin, BUILDER’s editor in chief. “It also instituted and embraced new practices that have made the company more agile, competitive, and profitable.”

At a time when most builders have struggled just to keep their heads above water, Louisiana-based fastest-growing private builder DSLD has grown consistently since launching in the summer of 2008. Using an operational blueprint from his previous company, principal Saun Sullivan executed a strategy that relies on making sure product is available when customers want to buy. That strategy is driven by even-flow construction (DSLD’s cycle times have been as low as 45 days), and fearlessly maintaining spec inventory.

“Price, quality, and scheduling are what separates DSLD from its competitors in Louisiana and Mississippi,” said Dersin. That formula has allowed the company to greatly expand its market reach from 20 communities at the end of 2009 to 51 by mid-April of this year. Its geographic growth was abetted by DSLD’s strategic alliance in 2010 with another local contractor, Vicknair Builders, which helped the combined company to generate an 89 percent increase in closings last year.

BUILDER’S fastest-growing public and private builders are chosen from the ranks of the BUILDER 100 list produced by BUILDER and covered in the May 2012 issue of BUILDER magazine and on For more information, visit

Published by Hanley Wood, BUILDER is the leading brand in residential construction and serves as the magazine of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). For more than three decades, BUILDER has provided essential news, information and resources about products, technologies, trends, regulatory requirements and best practices to help home building professionals innovate for success. With an integrated platform encompassing print, online and in-person, BUILDER is a trusted source for top builders, architects and other industry professionals across the country.

About Hanley Wood
Hanley Wood, LLC, is the premier media and information company serving the housing and commercial design and construction industries. Through its operating platforms, the company produces award-winning magazines and Web sites, marquee trade shows and events, market intelligence data and custom marketing solutions. The company also is North America’s leading publisher of home plans.

About PulteGroup
PulteGroup, Inc., based in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., is one of America's premier home building companies with operations in 60 markets and 28 states. The Company has an unmatched capacity to meet the needs of all buyer segments through its brand portfolio that includes Pulte Homes, Centex Homes, and Del Webb.

About DSLD
DSLD Homes is one of the top 100 home builders in the nation, and currently the largest privately held firm in its region. DSLD’s partners have been involved in creating over 125 successful communities, and are actively constructing new homes in over 60 neighborhoods throughout southern Louisiana and Mississippi.

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Amy Fisher
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