How to Maximize Growth In The Modular Construction Network

Cross-Sections brings to you bite-size conversations with host Anthony Gude as he chats with colleagues and leaders in the construction and industrial ecosystem. 


On this episode of Cross-Sections, Host Anthony Gude talked with Colby Swanson, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Operations Director, Modular Mobilization Coalition, and Michael Palmer, the Operations Director. The Modular Mobilization Coalition (MMC) is a group of independent modular construction companies with a nationwide network of dozens of factories. The MMC builds standardized modules for clients who demand volume, velocity, and value in their projects.

The trio discussed the types of projects the MMC works on, growth in the market, and challenges in the modular industry.

One thing that is important for Swanson and Palmer is that they continue to grow MMC. If you look at other industrialized construction markets, such as Japan, Germany, and Switzerland, the percentage of prefabricated construction of GDP is in the 40 percent range. This is where they want to be in the market. Palmer noted they have a long way to go, and a lot of infrastructure needs to be built to support that load.

“Our goal is to really grow the modular space,” Swanson said. “We’re at three-and-a-half, to four percent, and we want to grow that market share. We’ve done some back-of-the-envelope analysis, and we think that should be 35-40 percent of the construction market.”

The Modular Building Institute (MBI) recently published a report that fabricators in the U.S. found that 21 percent of their volume is multi-family, with that stat improving in just the past few years. However, while that portion of the market is increasing, there wasn’t any information about prefab in the hotel industry. Palmer thinks modular and hotels work well together, though.

“When we look at hotels in terms of the modular industry, there’s probably no better product,” Palmer said, “because every room is exactly the same.”

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