Floor Covering Weekly November 25, 2013 : Page 1

Vol. 62 No. 22 A Hearst Business Publication November 25, 2013 $4 A Hearst Busin ess Publicatio C ommercial November 2013 Supplemen t to Floor Cover ing Weekly n at Carpet’s installation Children Consolidated Hospital for N.Y. St. Mary’s in Bayside, F LOOR C OVERING W EEKLY The Industry’s Business News & Information Resource FCW World Marketplace Domotex Middle East CommercialCover.indd 1 Shaw design gic ma studio makes rbond Tandus Powe ons offers soluti LEED Demystifying ents v4 requirem d’s Consolidate ry rsa 70th Annive PM 11/20/13 2:28 By Santiago Montero [I] Domotex Middle East is only in its second year at its new location here in Istanbul but it has aspirations to become an industry draw for a region that is poised for tremendous growth. at sensibility brings a sense of opti-mism to the show that seems to be re ected not only in the words of trade fair organizers, but also of exhibitors. e show — from its exhibiting companies and the products they show, to the attendees themselves — re ects the historical nature of its host city as a meeting point of cultures: the stacks of traditional handmade rugs in contrast to the modern stands lend the event a unique character. “We are convinced Istanbul will become more important for commerce, including ooring, throughout this region,” said Alexander Kühnel, general manager, Deutsche Messe, which hosts the Domotex shows around the world. “In 2013, they will celebrate 100 years of the modern republic of Turkey. is government wants to be among the top 10 countries in the world across all industries and with more than 60 percent of its population 26 years old or younger, there is unbelievable potential for all consum-ing sectors. What they need is a platform to present their products and a trade show is best for that purpose.” at sense of growing opportunity was why Ibrahim Yilmaz representing iHiB, the association of Istanbul carpet manufacturers, likened the show “to a newborn child” that will only grow in importance. “ e show has again proven the strong interest of the international industry in the Turkish and Middle Eastern markets,”said Martin Folkerts, director of global fairs at Deutsche Messe. “One out of two exhibitors came from abroad. In addition to the internationality of the exhibitors, the trade visitors found a big variety of products, from hand-and machine-The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey Continued on page 19 Shaw’s ‘Grand’ ooring installation By Amy Joyce Rush [N Y] Shaw Flooring rolled out the red carpet, literally, at Grand Central Termi-nal here this week. As the sole sponsor of the Holiday Fair, the company provided more than 14,000 square feet of carpet, hardwood and resilient ooring in the Vanderbilt Hall. It was a tradition started in the earliest days of the Terminal when Philadelphia Carpet, now a Shaw division, provided the original red carpet for visiting dignitaries and celebrities. “Where else is better to test ooring than the busiest place in the world,” said Randy Merritt, president of Shaw at the Holiday Fair’s ribbon cutting. “Just like our homes, the oors of Grand Central Terminal are put to the test each day with kids, messes and weather.” Shaw president Randy Merritt with Radio City Managing the upturn at NAFCD enough, have the labor, or have the capital.” As demand increases, labor, technology and product supply all need to be in place. [C] How to manage and grow in a recovering economy was the running theme “We did some planning for growth several here at this year's NAFCD/NBMDA confer-years ago before the economy tanked out so we were already prepared for the growth ence this month. spurt,” said Art Layton, We have emerged from vice president at CMH the recession to a di erent Space. “When business world, said attendees here. comes back, it is going to And how do you manage create challenges.” that, they asked? “We’ve Buddy Faircloth, Cain weathered the storm. A lot & Bultman, said that you of folks handled the eco-need to manage your nomic downturn di er-inventory. “You've got to ently — some pared down, inventory the bestselling some retained their busi-Cain & Bultman’s Kirk Sandifer product deeply, keep the ness, some didn’t weather and Buddy Faircloth at NAFCD. inventory in a reasonable it at all,” said NAFCD turn — keep the A and B items well stocked executive vice president Michelle Miller. Speakers here emphasized the basic work and cut back on the C and D product.” ethics, such as accountability. Former NBA player Walter Bond, for example, said, “Stop Managing product In order to meet customer demands and selling product and start selling hopes and dreams. Does everyone in your marketplace cover a wide range of market needs, some distributors said that they expanded their know you, like you and trust you?” Expand the markets you serve, add new lines during the downturn. Ohio Valley is product categories, be aggressive and, said one of them. According to Je Garber, vice economist Brian Beaulieu, borrow money to president and general sales manager, “How do it. “ is year we have good news. I don’t see do you manage it? Retailers have four times any derailments in 2014,” he said. “Our con-the SKUs they had 15 years ago.” cern is that you aren’t going to be aggressive Continued on page 8 By Amy Joyce Rush and Brittany Walsh Continued on page 20 Rockettes at Grand Central Terminal. P e r i o d i c a l For breaking news updated each business day, visit us online at www.fcw1.com

Shaw’s ‘Grand’ flooring installation

Amy Joyce Rush

<br /> [NEW YORK] Shaw Flooring rolled out the red carpet, literally, at Grand Central Terminal here this week. As the sole sponsor of the Holiday Fair, the company provided more than 14,000 square feet of carpet, hardwood and resilient flooring in the Vanderbilt Hall. It was a tradition started in the earliest days of the Terminal when Philadelphia Carpet, now a Shaw division, provided the original red carpet for visiting dignitaries and celebrities.<br /> <br /> "Where else is better to test flooring than the busiest place in the world," said Randy Merritt, president of Shaw at the Holiday Fair's ribbon cutting. "Just like our homes, the floors of Grand Central Terminal are put to the test each day with kids, messes and weather." Grand Central has more than 750,000 people coming through it each day giving the Shaw brand tens of millions of impressions. It is the second most visited attraction in New York City after Times Square.<br /> <br /> Merritt noted that the flooring used for this installation is not just about style and design but about durability. Shaw flooring installed here in Vanderbilt Hall included about 11,000 square feet of Luxury Vinyl Plank, 400 square feet of Epic hardwood, 3,480 square feet of Anso nylon carpet and 76 4 X 3 area rugs. All the flooring was installed by aligned dealers and will be shown at the winter markets.<br /> <br /> Vendors here reflect many of the core values of Shaw, making the project even more meaningful. Most of the products being sold at the Holiday Fair are made locally, 88 percent are produced and designed in the U.S. According to Grand Central executives, the fair has become ever more environmentally minded. The fair will run until Dec. 24. All material published about the fair will bear the Shaw Floors name.<br /> <br /> "We were looking for options to update what we did with the pie fight," said Trey Thames, vice president of marketing. "We thought this was perfect. We wanted to show all Shaw floors and not just carpet. This highlights the beauty and durability and elevates the category. All the stories that unfold are something we can use for a long time, there is no shelf life."<br /> <br /> And in true Shaw fashion — as it has with its support of St. Jude's and even its partnership with HGTV branded products — the effort will be supported by marketing efforts throughout the year. Todd Callaway, director of digital content at Shaw, noted, "We are creating different stories to spread out through unique methods. And they are not all heavily branded, the content becomes the destination." Articles and videos will appear on the company site as well as on Face^f f ls and Pinterest, for example.<br /> <br /> The benefit to vendors at Grand Central is simple. Not only does the flooring com- plement the artisan products but it provides comfort underfoot.<br /> <br /> Grand Central Terminal, a national landmark built in 1913, has a rich history. Shaw Flooring treated the press to a private tour of the facility — a fascinating walk through its history and that of the city and country. Among factoids gathered during the almost three hour experience:<br /> <br /> The main concourse measures 36,000 square feet. Trains arrive every 47 seconds at the Terminal with a 98 percent to 99 percent on time performance rating.<br /> <br /> • A secret train station below the structure still holds a private train car belonging to FDR. It was used to transport the president and his limo directly to the Waldorf Astoria in order to hide his polio from the public.<br /> • In 1967, Penn Station was torn down and Grand Central was about to face the same destruction when Jackie O joined the fight to save the Terminal.<br /> • The Terminal’s basement sits 18 stories below street level and was used during WWII to house soldiers.<br /> • Acorn and oak leaf clusters can be seen throughout the Terminal as it is the symbol of the Vanderbilt family.<br /> <br /> Today, Grand Central is both train terminal and shopping destination. Commented Merritt, “As you can see, they turned the whole place into a revenue generating space.”

Domotex Middle East

Santiago Montero

<br /> [ISTANBUL] Domotex Middle East is only in its second year at its new location here in Istanbul but it has aspirations to become an industry draw for a region that is poised for tremendous growth. That sensibility brings a sense of optimism to the show that seems to be reflected not only in the words of trade fair organizers, but also of exhibitors.<br /> <br /> The show — from its exhibiting companies and the products they show, to the attendees themselves — reflects the historical nature of its host city as a meeting point of cultures: the stacks of traditional handmade rugs in contrast to the modern stands lend the event a unique character. "We are convinced Istanbul will become more important for commerce, including flooring, throughout this region," said Alexander Kuhnel, general manager, Deutsche Messe, which hosts the Domotex shows around the world.<br /> <br /> "In 2013, they will celebrate 100 years of the modern republic of Turkey. This government wants to be among the top 10 countries in the world across all industries and with more than 60 percent of its population 26 years old or younger, there is unbelievable potential for all consuming sectors. What they need is a platform to present their products and a trade show is best for that purpose."<br /> <br /> That sense of growing opportunity was why Ibrahim Yilmaz representing iHiB, the association of Istanbul carpet manufacturers, likened the show "to a newborn child" that will only grow in importance.<br /> <br /> "The show has again proven the strong interest of the international industry in the Turkish and Middle Eastern markets,"said Martin Folkerts, director of global fairs at Deutsche Messe.<br /> <br /> "One out of two exhibitors came from abroad. In addition to the internationality of the exhibitors, the trade visitors found a big variety of products, from hand- and machine-made carpets to parquet, laminate, resilient flooring, artificial grass and further items related to floor coverings."<br /> <br /> Most exhibitors agreed the event was effective in drawing buyers from the surrounding region.<br /> <br /> Paul Gray, Middle East sales manager for Forbo's adhesive division, said it was important to be here to serve his clients' needs, especially in fast growing commercial applications as the region continues to build everything from hospitals to schools.<br /> <br /> "Last year, traffic was a little better," said Gerty Joosten of CombiWood, a Dutch company and high-end supplier of hardwood floors, "but we are seeing people from the entire region." Her company's customizable floors are geared more to the architect and design markets she expects to see here.<br /> <br /> Classen captured a lot of attention from the beginning with leather and industrial looks in laminate flooring. What may end up being of most interest was a wood plastic composite (WPC) core for laminate floors that is PVCfree, and currently in development. Another new attraction was a system for laminate that allows customers to mount the product on their walls, which is especially useful in hiding loose wires from today's wall-mounted TV and entertainment systems. Classen will have even more introductions at Domotex in Hannover, according to Patrick Pohl, customer manager.<br /> <br /> Wolfgang Mosenbacher, area sales manager for Neuhofer Holz, a t r im and moldings supplier, noted the decidedly Turkish nature of the show and was hoping to see visitors from the wider region. Technology, he said, especially digital printing, continues to push the capabilities and styling options that suppliers have to offer which is important in such a diverse market as the Middle East.<br /> <br /> At Kronoflooring, Markus Oberbauer, managing director, said there has been a lot of interest both in and from the Middle East.<br /> <br /> Chinese bamboo supplier Dasso came to find distribution partners and to find that one new customer to push its plant expansion back home, according to Tony Wong, overseas sales manager. Dasso's rustic wide bamboo plank was a major draw.<br /> <br /> Freek Kujpers of Esco, a Czech Republic supplier of wood floors, said that although the Middle East is primarily an area rug market, there has been a lot of interest in wood flooring here at the show.<br /> <br /> One exhibitor, Aray's general manager, Atilla Kirsan, said that Domotex Middle East already beat out Dubai, the previous venue, for traffic and customer interest. "I think they were surprised last year with how well the show went, and this year is even better," he said. He plans to keep coming back.<br /> <br /> Growth ahead<br /> Kühnel, clearly excited about the potential for this market, expressed his satisfaction with show efforts but at the same time demonstrated a clear willingness to look at every opportunity for improvement. every opportunity for improvement. "We recognize that our show date is a challenge and we are looking to move to the first half of the year which works better with local production cycles. The problem is with fairground capacity," he said.<br /> <br /> However, he noted that this year, a program of "hosted by" delegations have helped bring professional buyers to the show. And certainly, Domotex hosted forums for buyers and a design award program for architects and designers have helped drive more interest from the local market. Both are areas he plans on expanding for the future.<br /> <br /> “All of this brings added value to the show and these will be the things we work on,” he concluded.<br /> <br /> “This is the only trade fair in the region to offer this scope of flooring product,” said Wolfgang Lenarz, managing director of Domotex.

Managing the upturn at NAFCD

Amy Joyce Rush and Brittany Walsh

<br /> [CHICAGO] How to manage and grow in a recovering economy was the running theme here at this year's NAFCD/NBMDA conference this month.<br /> <br /> We have emerged from the recession to a different world, said attendees here. And how do you manage that, they asked? "We've weathered the storm. A lot of folks handled the economic downturn differently — some pared down, some retained their business, some didn't weather it at all," said NAFCD executive vice president Michelle Miller.<br /> <br /> Speakers here emphasized the basic work ethics, such as accountability. Former NBA player Walter Bond, for example, said, "Stop selling product and start selling hopes and dreams. Does everyone in your marketplace know you, like you and trust you?"<br /> <br /> Expand the markets you serve, add new product categories, be aggressive and, said economist Brian Beaulieu, borrow money to do it. "This year we have good news. I don't see any derailments in 2014," he said. "Our concern is that you aren't going to be aggressive enough, have the labor, or have the capital."<br /> <br /> As demand increases, labor, technology and product supply all need to be in place. "We did some planning for growth several years ago before the economy tanked out so we were already prepared for the growth spurt," said Art Layton, vice president at CMH Space. "When business comes back, it is going to create challenges."<br /> <br /> Buddy Faircloth, Cain & Bultman, said that you need to manage your inventory. "You've got to inventory the bestselling product deeply, keep the inventory in a reasonable turn — keep the A and B items well stocked and cut back on the C and D product."<br /> <br /> Managing product<br /> In order to meet customer demands and cover a wide range of market needs, some distributors said that they expanded their lines during the downturn. Ohio Valley is one of them. According to Jeff Garber, vice president and general sales manager, "How do you manage it? Retailers have four times the SKUs they had 15 years ago."<br /> <br /> For Rosana Chaidez, vice president of sales and marketing and procurement at Haines, it’s all about being more efficient. “Distributors lost some inventory efficiency in the downturn due to lower volume. Now that the economy is showing sustainable growth, we anticipate the mix of domestic and imported products to produce a steady flow of business.”<br /> <br /> For Rosana Chaidez, vice president of sales and marketing and procurement at Haines, it’s all about being more efficient. “Distributors lost some inventory efficiency in the downturn due to lower volume. Now that the economy is showing sustainable growth, we anticipate the mix of domestic and imported products to produce a steady flow of business.”<br /> <br /> The right people for the right job The downturn exposed labor issues — employee compensation as well as company needs. In 2007, Cain & Bultman, for example, asked employees to take a 5 percent pay cut in 2007. Management took cuts as well. In 2010, all but top management returned to regular pay. Management waited until this year. “It was tough on hourly employees but they suffered through,” said Faircloth. He added that it revealed the strong character of Cain & Bultman staff.<br /> <br /> CMH expanded during the downturn and moved into some areas that it had already mapped out that required some “right-sizing,” according to Layton. “We have an incredible group of people that simply step up and take more responsibility, take charge. Our focus right now is how to better manage the assets we have and the people. You have to fine tune — make sure we are doing the right things for our vendors and suppliers and make sure we have the right people in the right job.”<br /> <br /> Craig Folven, vice president of sales and marketing for Herregan, said staffing adjusted through “natural attrition.” He also said that Herregan doubled its sales force six years ago and that it is now at a number the company is comfortable with.<br /> <br /> Added Torrey Jaeckle, vice president of Jaeckle Distributors, “We made good hires during the recession but yes, harder to find, the investment is higher and it was longer looking.”<br /> <br /> Beaulieu noted that the cost of talent is going up. “Talented people are going to be poached. Figure out how to put golden handcuffs on them.” He also said that training is more important than ever since in some cases, you will need to “create your skilled labor.”<br /> <br /> Garber said that Ohio Valley is training people to move up. “We’ve analyzed that in each market and added entry level people.”<br /> <br /> Chaidez of Haines noted that the recession has made them more aware of performance. “Business discipline has been learned. There is no room for poor performers,” she said.<br /> <br /> Technology<br /> Jaeckle said that his company has invested in customer research and technology. “We are researching what the customer’s needs are, focusing on core customer segments.” Jaeckle Distributors has invested in analytic software that takes a “tremendous amount of data and tracks trends,” he said. In addition, a product dashboard gives better insight into how the month is progressing.

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