Blue Ridge Carpet Mills Closes after 43 Years
Ellijay, GA, Dec. 12, 2011 -- Blue Ridge Carpet Mills, a commercial carpet mill based in Ellijay, Georgia, has been forced to close its doors.
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Blue Ridge, whose business peaked in 2005 with over $50 million in sales, focused on the office sector of the commercial carpet business.
Blue Ridge struggled throughout the recession and wasn’t able to hold on long enough for the market to recover.
Blue Ridge was known for its patterned broadloom products and entered the modular carpet sector in 2002 when it acquired Lowe’s carpets.
The company stopped manufacturing at the end of September but kept its customer service open until the end of October. Mike Gallman, former CEO, has been retained by PNC Bank (its sole lender) to liquidate its remaining assets.
Blue Ridge opened its doors in 1968 as Davis Mills with a Small Business Administration loan to its founder, Ralph Davis.
Through its history, it was owned by the Lowy Group (a floorcovering distributor/wholesaler based in St. Louis), a PE firm in Houston, Texas, and River and Associates based in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
In 2005, Floor Focus Magazine ranked Blue Ridge as the 11th largest commercial carpet mill. At the peak of its business, many of Blue Ridge’s carpet styles were designed by Sue Ross with SRD and Associates in California.
Gallman spent 21 years at Shaw Industries before taking the helm at Blue Ridge in 1998.