Task force, expanded membership, fabrication among tools for growth
BY Susan E. Avery, CAE, CBSA Executive Director

ince its founding in 1951, the Copper and Brass Servicenter Association (CBSA) has been dedicated to the success of its members in the red metals industry. As the supply chain continues to evolve, so does the association.

To help ensure that the association is best serving its members, a Strategy Task Force forms every other year. This task force is chaired by the vice president of CBSA and comprises members of the CBSA board of directors.

Previous task force teams approached their work by having in-depth discussions with members about the products and services CBSA members provide, what they value and what they would like to see from CBSA.

This insight led to a more robust members-only area of the CBSA website (, additional in-person training opportunities, CBSA University online education and more networking at the annual CBSA convention, among other improvements.

The 2018-2019 Strategy Task Force approached its work a little differently. It took a step back and looked at the red metals supply chain as it is today and considered where it is heading and how CBSA can best serve members now and into the future.

The Task Force noticed that service centers are adding fabrication services to their offerings, due to customer demand and then surveyed members several times to test its theories and apply data to its observations. The result was a plan presented to the CBSA board of directors last year.

New categories
The Strategy Task Force recommended and the CBSA leadership approved expanding the existing Service Center member category to four categories:

Service Center—for companies that derive no more than 20 percent of sales from the fabrication of copper and/or copper alloy mill products.

Service Center/Fabricator—for companies that derive between 21 and 49 percent of sales from the fabrication of copper and/or copper alloy mill products.

Fabricator/Service Center—for companies that derive between 50 and 79 percent of sales from the fabrication of copper and/or copper alloy mill products.

Fabricator—for companies that derive more than 80 percent of sales from the fabrication of copper and/or copper alloy mill products.

Furthermore, the group analyzed the inherent differences between fabrication and value-added services and put forth a plan that addresses what the results mean for CBSA members:

  • Developing new educational programming and other services about copper and brass fabrication.
  • Collecting additional information about the amount of fabrication CBSA Service Center member companies are engaged in.
  • Maintaining dues levels for the new categories consistent with those for Service Center members. Regardless of how much fabrication a service center is engaged in, dues will be calculated as they always have been for service centers.
Promoting red metals
The Copper and Brass Servicenter Association is a community of copper and brass service centers, fabricators, mills and platers working together to promote the use and growth of opportunities for copper and brass mill products.

For 69 years, CBSA has been the only trade association committed solely to advancing the copper and copper alloy mill products distribution industry. CBSA members include service centers, mills and platers in the copper and copper alloy industry.

The CBSA’s mission statement: To enhance its members’ role as an effective and profitable distribution link between suppliers and customers and to promote the use of and growth opportunities for copper and brass mill products. This is achieved by offering education and training, providing information, and promoting constructive dialogue among service center members, mills and platers servicing our industry.

The Strategy Task Force’s next meeting will be during CBSA’s annual convention, March 24-26 in Lost Pines, Texas.

CBSA Executive Director Susan E. Avery, CAE, is an association executive with a reputation for strategic thinking and a background in finance.