Industry Rebound is Top Story of 2013

Chattanooga, TN, Dec. 31, 2013 -- Broadly speaking, our biggest story of 2013 is the flooring industry began a sustained turnaround, with roughly $1 billion in investments/expansion plans, much of it in North Georgia, touching every flooring category. However, most of the plans were in the carpet arena, and much of that focused on polyester.

1. Mohawk Industries was aggressive in 2013, acquiring tile maker Marazzi, closing the acquisition of laminate maker Pergo, and acquiring board maker Spano InvestNV. It also announced several expansion projects.
2. Engineered Floors announced a $450 million expansion in North Georgia.
3. The LVT category will continue to broaden its marketshare as Armstrong, Mannington, Mohawk and IVC all said they are ramping up production in the U.S. Also, carpet maker Beaulieu also began selling LVT.
4. Carpet tile also continued to take share. Shaw opened a plant in China, broke ground on a second tile plant in Adairsville, Georgia, and Interface rebuilt its plant in Australia.
5. The housing market rebounded, with sales of existing homes and new homes up sharply over 2012, as well as house prices.
6. Production in the U.S. became attractive to foreign firms. A few of the companies announcing expansion plans in the U.S. included Dubai backing firm Mattex, JN Fibers, a Chinese maker of recycled polyester fiber products, German dry mortar firm Uzin-Utz AG, and Chinese hardwood flooring company Zeyuan Flooring.
7. There was plenty of executive movement this year. Bentley Prince Street CEO Anthony Minte retired after 21 years and was replaced by Ralph Grogan. Beaulieu CEO Ralph Boe said he will retire in February after a transition period. Armstrong Flooring Products CEO Frank Ready retired and was replaced by Thomas Mangas. Don Finkell, who led Anderson Hardwood for more than three decades, also retired but is still very active in the industry. Scott Humphrey moved from Shaw Industries to become CEO of the World Floor Covering Association. Thomas Trissl, founder of Centiva, began a new company and promptly purchased subfloor company HPS North America. Bob Weiner, who had a long history with carpet firms Prince Street and Constantine, began Totally Enterprises LLC and Totally Carpet, to focus on the corporate carpet market.
8. There were troubles for Lumber Liquidators. The company's offices were searched by federal authorities, who suspected the company may have violated the Lacey Act by having some of its products made with illegally harvested wood abroad. The firm was also accused by an online investment site of having illegal levels of formaldehyde in some of its products. As a result of these problems, a number of class action suits have been filed against the company.



Other Archived Articles

Tight Lending Standards Still Hurting Home Builders   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 9, 2014 -- Tight mortgage lending standards continue to affect sales for single-family builders, according to a survey released by the National Association of Home Builders.

Wholesale Inventories Increase in August   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 9, 2014 -- U.S. wholesale inventories rose 0.7% in August, according to the Commerce Department.

Initial Jobless Claims Hold Steady Last Week   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 9, 2014 -- Initial jobless claims held steady at 287,000 last week, according to the Labor Department.

Quick-Step Starts Promoting Q-Wood Flooring on the Internet   Full Article
Dallas, TX, Oct. 9, 2014 -- Quick-Step developed a new website specifically for its Q-Wood category of flooring.

Mortgage Application Volume Rises Last Week   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 8, 2014 -- Mortgage application volume increased 3.8% last week from the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Got You Floored on Fast 50 List in Piedmont Region   Full Article
Greensboro, NC, Oct. 8, 2014 -- -Got You Floored, Inc. was named by the Triad Business Journal to the Fast 50 for the Piedmont Triad Region in North Carolina.

Georgia Gov. Deal Visits Mohawk in Calhoun   Full Article
Calhoun, GA, Oct. 7, 2014 -- Earlier this week, Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal toured the Mohawk Flooring Center in Calhoun and spoke to employees about the importance of the flooring industry in the state of Georgia.

Interface Issues Third Quarter Earnings Warning   Full Article
New York, NY, Oct. 8, 2014 -- Shares of Interface fell 16.5% in after-hours trading Tuesday after the company announced lower-than-expected preliminary third-quarter results.

National Retail Federation Expects Holiday Sales Boost   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 7, 2014 -- Retail spending during the holiday season is expected to be the highest in three years, according to a forecast by the National Retail Federation.

Job Openings Highest Since 2001   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 7, 2014 -- Job openings increased to 4.84 million in August, up from 4.67 million in July, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey.

Builders Offering Incentives as Sales Soften   Full Article
New York, NY, Oct. 7, 2014 -- Home builders nationally have begun sweetening offers in light of slowing sales, according to a Bloomberg News story.

Domotex To Feature Installation Technology for First Time   Full Article
Hannover, Germany, Oct. 7, 2014 -- Domotex 2015 set for Jan. 17-20 will feature 1,300 exhibitors from more than 60 countries.

Fincibec Group Seeking Tile Award Entries   Full Article
Sassuolo, Italy, Oct. 6, 2014 -- The Quinquennial Tile Award, now in its fourth edition, seeking entries using the Fincibec Group's three brands, Century, Monocibec and Naxos, between Jan. 1, 2011 and Dec. 31, 2015.

Armstrong Raising Some Vinyl Prices   Full Article
Lancaster, PA, Oct. 6, 2014 -- Armstrong said it will raise prices in the U.S. and Canada on commercial vinyl composition tile and BioBased Tile by 4%, commercial wallbase by 4%, and select residential tile products.

Stifel Sees Stronger Hard Surface Sales, Weaker Carpet Sales   Full Article
New York, NY, Oct. 6, 2014 -- Analyst Stifel Nicolaus believes that third quarter flooring sales will show stronger sales of hard surface flooring and weaker sales of carpet.

NeoCon East Offers Education for Designers   Full Article
Baltimore, MD, Oct. 6, 2014 -- NeoCon East has announced its educational program for design professionals seeking continuing education.

Duncan Appointed President of Mannington's Residential Business   Full Article
Salem, NJ, Oct. 3, 2014 -- Mannington Mills announced today that Ed Duncan will replace Kim Holm, who is retiring, as president of Mannington’s Residential Business.

Services Sector Growth Slows in September   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 3, 2014 -- The services sector of the economy grew at a slower pace in September, according to the Institute for Supply Management.

CRI Annual Meeting Set Nov. 12   Full Article
Dalton, GA, Oct. 3, 2014 -- The Carpet and Rug Institute's 2014 Annual Membership Meeting will be held Nov. 12.

Unemployment at Six-Year Low in September   Full Article
Washington, DC, Oct. 3, 2014 -- The unemployment rate fell to 5.9% in September as the economy created 248,000 jobs, according to the Labor Department.