Floor Covering Weekly May 26, 2014 : Page 1

COMMERCIAL ISSUE -NEOCON 2014 Vol. 63 No. 10 A Hearst Business Publication May 26, 2014 $4 Mannington’s Boucle Regupol installs at Villanova University 6 Mills retool commercial strategy By Janet Herlihy Flooring suppliers have changed the way they go to market in the commercial world by thoughfully marrying hard and soft surface from design to marketing to sales. And, these makers said, this strategic change is helping to win jobs and more square footage. It’s all about a demand for simplicity, according to Michel Vermette, Mohawk Industries’ senior vice president of commercial and international business. “Whether Fortune 500 companies or major institutions, they are trying to source more, faster,” Vermette said. “Everyone is short on time and looking to complete projects more quickly. They are looking for suppliers that can deliver the right product at the right time,” he stressed. Nearly half of Mannington Commercial’s projects involve cross-category flooring, according to Jack Ganley, company president. “Most of the demand is in hospitality, retail, healthcare and education where specifiers are looking for more than carpet,” said Ganley. Mannington won the Stonebridge Assisted Living and Memory Care project in Hampstead, N.C., because, with its lines of broadloom and modular carpet, resilient VCT (vinyl composition tile), LVT (luxury vinyl tile), resilient sheet, rubber, wood, porcelain, as well as transitions such as wall base, it could supply everything Inte-rior Architecture and Design PLLC spec-ified, and deliver it all when the project was ready for installation, according to Joyce Cavin, district manager for Manning-ton Commercial/Amtico. At the recent HD Show in Vegas, Mohawk’s new resilient offering won back some business, according to Allie Finkell, director of resilient marketing for the Mohawk Group. “A hotel client had been using Mohawk soft surface but had switched to a resilient that we did not offer. Now that we have loose lay LVT, we were able Continued on page 1 Mannington won the Stonebridge project by offering resilient, wall base and carpet. RM Design brings customization, efficiency to A&D community By Mallory Cruise [Greenville, S.C.] At RM Design, Inc., things are done a little differently, all in an effort to offer architects and designers some-thing a little different as well. FCW recently spoke with owner Rich Miller who explained, “Our mantra is, how can we help you evolve (through color, texture, gloss) more quickly?” The company, which provides custom hand-sculpting, amongst other services, to hardwood flooring manufacturers, recently completed a studio/showroom/museum to enhance its offerings to the industry. “Every-thing in the showroom is meant to be inspi-rational,” he said. “We take a client’s design wants then custom create the pattern and color they require. Being unique is important.” In 7,000 square feet of space, Miller not only showcases custom capabilities and for-mats but allows the A&D community to see samples under various lighting conditions — allowing a manufacturers’ clients to see what a floor will look like in every type of From fishnets to carpet, Aquafil’s newest nylon is 100% recycled nylons. To do that, we must expand our capac-ity and become more efficient at collecting the [Cartersville, Ga.] As Aquafil USA nears waste materials. Now, Econyl is made up of 50 completion of its $25 million expansion to percent postindustrial (PI) waste and 50 per-cent postconsumer (PC) increase its capacity to waste. The PC is used extrude and process carpet and discarded Econyl, its proprietary fishnets. The fishnets nylon 6 made entirely are either discarded into from recycled materials, the ocean or in landfills. the company is proving It’s a good raw material that making and mar-because it is pure nylon,” keting 100 percent recy-Rossi reported. cled nylon is financially Aquafil USA is a sustainable as well. manufacturer of a Franco Rossi, com-Aquafil’s Econyl nylon 6 is sourced variety of nylon 6 BCF pany president, noted entirely from recycled materials. (bulked continuous that in today’s economy it is slightly more expensive to make nylon 6 filament) yarns, polymers and plastics. The through the Econyl system, “But some mar-expansion includes adding a second plant in kets are willing to pay the difference in cost. Cartersville, according to Rossi. And as part We believe that over time it will become less of its sustainability efforts, it is also adding a expensive because, through the evolution of postconsumer carpet processing operation technology, more improvements will make that will produce nylon 6 “fluff” to be sent to Aquafil’s Ljubljana, Slovenia plant, where it the process more efficient.” Currently, Econyl accounts for 30 percent of will become Econyl nylon 6, made from 100 Aquafil USA sales, with the remainder made up percent recycled materials. The expansion, of traditional nylon and some polyester. “Now, which is expected to create more than 50 new Econyl is a premium, niche product,” Rossi jobs, is slated for completion this summer. Aquafil is currently making about 4 mil-said. “Our goal is to become 100 percent Econyl and to deliver it at a price that is equal to other Continued on page 19 By Janet Herlihy Vignettes line the wall of Rich Miller’s showroom in Greenville, S.C. Continued on page 18 Periodical For breaking news updated each business day, visit us online at www.fcw1.com

Mills retool commercial strategy

Janet Herlihy


Flooring suppliers have changed the way they go to market in the commercial world by though-fully marrying hard and soft surface from design to marketing to sales. And, these makers said, this strategic change is helping to win jobs and more square footage.

It’s all about a demand for simplicity, according to Michel Vermette, Mohawk Industries’ senior vice president of commercial and international business. “Whether Fortune 500 companies or major institutions, they are trying to source more, faster,” Vermette said. “Everyone is short on time and looking to complete projects more quickly. They are looking for suppliers that can deliver the right product at the right time,” he stressed.

Nearly half of Mannington Commercial’s projects involve cross-category flooring, according to Jack Ganley, company president. “Most of the demand is in hospitality, retail, healthcare and education where specifiers are looking for more than carpet,” said Ganley.

Mannington won the Stonebridge Assisted Living and Memory Care project in Hampstead, N.C., because, with its lines of broadloom and modular carpet, resilient VCT (vinyl composition tile), LVT (luxury vinyl tile), resilient sheet, rubber, wood, porcelain, as well as transitions such as wall base, it could supply everything Interior Architecture and Design PLLC specified, and deliver it all when the project was ready for installation, according to Joyce Cavin, district manager for Mannington Commercial/Amtico.

At the recent HD Show in Vegas, Mohawk’s new resilient offering won back some business, according to Allie Finkell, director of resilient marketing for the Mohawk Group. “A hotel client had been using Mohawk soft surface but had switched to a resilient that we did not offer. Now that we have loose lay LVT, we were able to recapture that business,” Finkell said. “It’s too soon to know numbers, but from talking to our customers, we know Mohawk is now more relevant to those that use hard surface flooring.

“Most projects install with a mix of hard and soft products, and most specifiers and end users are attracted to working with one supplier to simplify the process,” Finkell continued. “Using a single point of contact allows clients to take advantage of more competitive pricing and more efficient delivery of materials.”

Vermette added, “Mohawk offers a large toolbox and can use it to maximize each project with broadloom, modular carpet, woven broadloom, resilient, rubber, hardwood and/ or laminate. We can bring in Daltile to handle ceramic tile.”

Mohawk’s resources provide services — start to finish. Vermette said, “We don’t need to focus on hard surface or soft, but can put the right surface together with the right design that has the right sustainability features — all in line with the budget.”

After about a year of transition, “Tandus Centiva is now one company and one brand,” said Glen Hussman, president of the fully merged Tarkett business. “Tandus Centiva is a single organization that is responsible for all the product platforms: Powerbond (a hybrid that bonds a nylon face to a closed-cell cushion); modular carpet; tufted broadloom; woven carpet; and, LVT,” said Hussman.

About four years ago, demand for a resilient product motivated Beaulieu Commercial to get into the LVT business. Rob Cushman, vice president of marketing for BOLYU Contract, explained, “It was a good complement to our carpet business and we were already handling modular products because of our carpet tile line.”

Design across categories, projects

Cross merchandising is an advantage for Mannington, according to Natalie Jones, vice president for commercial brand development at the company. “We approach design from a single point of view so that the different products work together and all have the same level of design excellence,” Jones said.

Shaw Contract Group offers broadloom, carpet tile and new luxury vinyl plank (LVP), according to John Stephens, vice president of marketing. He explained that the Shaw Contract design team took over the styling of LVP from its resilient suppliers last year and now there is a holistic approach to designing the resilient products, keeping in mind how they would work with carpet products. “Shaw brings in 50 to 60 design clients each year to meet with the design team and show them the products during development for their feedback, he said.

Patcraft, a Shaw division that targets high performance commercial markets, has offered resilient sheet and LVT for many years, along with carpet products. It showed both hard and soft flooring products at its NeoCon showroom in 2013 for the first time, according to Pamela Rainey, Patcraft’s creative director, ASID, IIDA. “We designed them so that they could flow across a space and were the first to design LVT that didn’t mimic other surfaces.”

Patcraft will continue to offer innovative solutions this year, including a new modular shape called Facet. Patcraft’s Mixed Materials Collection includes hard and soft products. “They are exactly the same height and can be used together for patterning and defining spaces,” Rainey explained.

Tandus Centiva assures all its various flooring products can work together, according to Hussman, who said, “There is one design group to create category leading design and build resonance across all categories.”

BOLYU designs hard and soft surface with co-existence in mind. “Although the LVT visuals are simulations of more naturally occurring woods, stones and ceramics, some of our designs have been inspired by our carpet products to better translate or transition, or even coordinate together,” Cushman noted.

Read the full article at http://bt.e-ditionsbyfry.com/article/Mills+retool+commercial+strategy/1718424/210936/article.html.

RM Design brings customization, efficiency to A&D community

Mallory Cruise


[Greenville, S.C.] At RM Design, Inc., things are done a little differently, all in an effort to offer architects and designers something a little different as well. FCW recently spoke with owner Rich Miller who explained, “Our mantra is, how can we help you evolve (through color, texture, gloss) more quickly?”

The company, which provides custom hand-sculpting, amongst other services, to hardwood flooring manufacturers, recently completed a studio/showroom/museum to enhance its offerings to the industry. “Everything in the showroom is meant to be inspirational,” he said. “We take a client’s design wants then custom create the pattern and color they require. Being unique is important.”

In 7,000 square feet of space, Miller not only showcases custom capabilities and formats but allows the A&D community to see samples under various lighting conditions — allowing a manufacturers’ clients to see what a floor will look like in every type of indoor environment. “By using light in this way, we are being truthful about the product at the point of sale,” explained Miller. “Architects and designers own the entire customization process — which is key.”

In addition, Miller offers quick turnaround of custom-produced prototype samples that are on display throughout the showroom, featured in comprehensive vignettes.

Efficient labor, service

Miller has managed a prisoner rehabilitation program at Kershaw Correctional Institution in Kershaw, S.C. for the past eight years. Released inmates who have participated in the program are in demand by companies wishing to do small amounts of custom work in their own facilities while continuing to send full pallets and truckloads to Kershaw, Miller noted.

Miller’s production model at Kershaw is extensive yet efficient. Once a client chooses a wood flooring sample, the manufacturer he is working with (he said he works with several top producers) then sends lumber to the Kershaw Correctional Institution. Here, each of the approximately 160 inmates can custom scrape about 300 square feet of flooring by hand in roughly four hours, explained Miller. The flooring is then shipped back to the manufacturer.

“Whereas it can take three months to custom create a sample with larger manufacturers, we can build prototypes and process samples out the next day or even same day,” said Miller. “Having a good story is important.”

In addition to sending out samples quickly, Miller creates by hand styles and designs that are typically achieved with machines, such as beveling and end work. This is one way, said Miller, that he can differentiate himself in the marketplace.

“I work on behalf of manufacturers so when architects and designers come to the showroom, my whole goal is to get them to utilize the manufacturers’ products, and to also use all of the tools the showroom makes available to them.”

Miller’s showroom also comes complete with digital capabilities. For those architects, designers and suppliers who are unable to make it to Miller’s Greenville showroom, he is able to broadcast to anywhere in the country.

“With televisions and a greenscreen, we can work with architects anywhere while broadcasting out of our home-base here in Greenville,” said Miller.

A walk through history

Rich Miller has spent years curating an impressive collection of historical artifacts that are on display throughout his showroom. According to Miller, every piece in the showroom is a tool for education and communication. School tours, individual events for children’s groups and fund-raisers for non-profits such as the Ronald McDonald House are frequent uses for the studio.

An often recurring story touted at Miller’s showroom is the importance of reclamation. “The biggest threat to any business today is the refusal to change or adapt to changing customer attitudes and preferences in the marketplace. The entire industry would do well to adopt the ‘Four R’s’ in recycling — recovered, reclaimed, restored and repurposed,” he said.

Read the full article at http://bt.e-ditionsbyfry.com/article/RM+Design+brings+customization%2C+efficiency+to+A%26amp%3BD+community/1718425/210936/article.html.

From fishnets to carpet, Aquafil’s newest nylon is 100% recycled

Janet Herlihy


[Cartersville, Ga.] As Aquafil USA nears completion of its $25 million expansion to increase its capacity to extrude and process Econyl, its proprietary nylon 6 made entirely from recycled materials, the company is proving that making and marketing 100 percent recycled nylon is financially sustainable as well.

Franco Rossi, company president, noted that in today’s economy it is slightly more expensive to make nylon 6 through the Econyl system, “But some markets are willing to pay the difference in cost. We believe that over time it will become less expensive because, through the evolution of technology, more improvements will make the process more efficient.”

Currently, Econyl accounts for 30 percent of Aquafil USA sales, with the remainder made up of traditional nylon and some polyester. “Now, Econyl is a premium, niche product,” Rossi said. “Our goal is to become 100 percent Econyl and to deliver it at a price that is equal to other nylons. To do that, we must expand our capacity and become more efficient at collecting the waste materials. Now, Econyl is made up of 50 percent postindustrial (PI) waste and 50 percent postconsumer (PC) waste. The PC is used carpet and discarded fishnets. The fishnets are either discarded into the ocean or in landfills. It’s a good raw material because it is pure nylon,” Rossi reported.

Aquafil USA is a manufacturer of a variety of nylon 6 BCF (bulked continuous filament) yarns, polymers and plastics. The expansion includes adding a second plant in Cartersville, according to Rossi. And as part of its sustainability efforts, it is also adding a postconsumer carpet processing operation that will produce nylon 6 “fluff” to be sent to Aquafil’s Ljubljana, Slovenia plant, where it will become Econyl nylon 6, made from 100 percent recycled materials. The expansion, which is expected to create more than 50 new jobs, is slated for completion this summer.

Aquafil is currently making about 4 mil- lion pounds of Econyl pellets a month at the Slovenia plant. Aquafil USA then sources its Econyl resin from that plant.

This is Aquafil’s fifth expansion in Cartersville since it added fiber extrusion in 2006. It will move its twisting and air entangling operation to a refurbished 250,000 square foot building, adding additional capacity for a total of 35 million pounds a year.

Fiber extrusion will then expand 50 percent at its Aquafil Dr. plant, increasing that capacity to a total of 50 million pounds per year. The carpet shearing operation, able to process about 50 million pounds of old carpet, will also be added to that plant, Rossi added.

When Aquafil USA was established in Cartersville in 1999, the company leased a small 20,000 square foot building, and began processing fiber it imported from Aquafil Spa, on a few twisters and air entangling machines, according to Rossi.

“We started with solution dyed nylon 6 made in Italy from all virgin materials,” he said. But working to produce sustainable products came naturally to the company. “The parent company is based in Trento, Italy in an especially beautiful location and it was always important to maintain the natural environment, “But when Guido Bonazzi, current CEO and major shareholder of Aquafil Spa, met Ray Anderson (of Interface) in the mid- 1990s, Bonazzi was influenced by Anderson’s concept of how to conduct a sound business without hurting the environment. Today, Interface is Aquafil’s largest customer and the companies work together with Networks and Healthy Seas to keep discarded fishnets out of the world’s oceans by collecting and recycling them into nylon fiber,” Rossi said.

Aquafil set out to create a fully sustainable nylon resin and Econyl, in development for the past three years, is now a reality, Rossi said, explaining, “Econyl is not only a product. It is a system that transforms old used nylon into virgin-like nylon resin and yarn.”

Rossi said that the conventional way to recycle nylon is to re-melt the material and then filter out impurities, but, “That only allows for a somewhat degraded material that can be used for injection molded products but not back into nylon fiber.”

Aquafil’s process is to depolymerize the old nylon back to a single monomer. Aquafil’s system results in very high ratio of nylon output compared to the waste input, making the process commercially viable, according to the company.

Aquafil states, “The new purification process is less complex than the ones applied in the industry, uses less energy and water, creates less residual waste and produces a lot more first-grade nylon. The Econyl system can be used to process the waste nylon 6 over and over, to produce new polymers, whose technical characteristics and quality is no different from virgin materials.”

Read the full article at http://bt.e-ditionsbyfry.com/article/From+fishnets+to+carpet%2C+Aquafil%E2%80%99s+newest+nylon+is+100%25+recycled/1718427/210936/article.html.

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