Skip to main content

Catalina reports market update on resilient floor covering sales and growth opportunities

FLOOR COVERING STATISTICAL TRENDS AND OUTLOOK

S. Hirschhorn
 After five years of reporting on sluggish floor covering demand, I am glad to present a positive story - the growing selling opportunities in resilient flooring.

Fiberglass-backed sheet vinyl has had some of the sharpest flooring gains over the past three years making resilient replacement sales the strongest growing market between 2007 and 2010. We now estimate that in 2011 resilient flooring will reached 17.8% of total US floor covering sales. Manufacturers are making big investments in the product category and consumers are responding well to the new product lines.

 Resilient flooring manufacturers have used their price competitiveness to entice consumers seeking value priced products and introduced products that stimulated interest by residential and commercial customers.  Resilient’s success is due to a combination of these factors:
•  Resilient – a value-priced product line.  During 2011, resilient flooring is expected to sell at $0.74 per square foot, in manufactures dollars.  This compares to a U.S. industry average of $0.98.  The gap has narrowed in recent years as resin prices increased sharply, however consumers have increased their preference for value-priced products as the recession cut incomes and home prices.
•  Consumers responding positively to the introduction of new and innovative products.   The growth of new luxury vinyl tile and fiberglass-backed sheet vinyl, which have had strong growth in the last three years,  contributed to making resilient flooring residential replacement sales the strongest growing flooring market between 2007 and 2010.  The recent introduction of click LVT could continue to make residential resilient sales a growth market.
•  Rubber, linoleum, and cork products offering commercial users environmentally friendly and sustainable flooring products.  These niche products have made significant inroads in the commercial remodeling and replacement market, especially the growth-oriented healthcare markets.
Due to these factors, we estimate resilient will reach a 17.8% share of the U.S. floor covering market in square foot sales. This is up from 15.3% in 2007 and only 12.6% in 2002 (see chart).

Manufacturers are making investments in production capacity and distribution. As resilient products increase their position in the U.S. floor coverings industry manufacturers are investing in domestic production and distribution capacities. For example, Armstrong invested $25 million in next generation fiberglass-backed sheet vinyl that incorporates MasterWorks 3D technology.  IVC recently opened a new $75 million facility in Dalton, Georgia to manufacture fiberglass-backed sheet vinyl, and also signed a distribution agreement with CCA Global in 2010 for it fiberglass-backed products.  In addition, Shaw signed an agreement with LG Hausys in 2010 to be its exclusive seller in the United States and Canada. 

I’d love to know how you are taking advantage of the growth and opportunities in resilient flooring and how your customers are responding to the new resilient products.

Stuart

Stuart Hirschhorn is a member of the Floor Covering Institute and Director of Research of Catalina Research, Inc. which provides in-depth market research on the floor covering industry. 

Read more about resilient growth in Fiberglass growth rate prompts investment - Floor Covering Weekly May 9, 2011.

Check out Stuart's other posts in the Hirschhorn Blog Roll

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Intelligent merchandising in the floor covering showroom

In a ceramic tile and stone showroom the two biggest challenges for customers are  visualizing how the tile or combination of tiles will look installed in the home and determining which tiles are suitable for their intended application. Figuring out how to address these two challenges should be a priority for every showroom.

Along with that, conveying the features, benefits and limitations of the products is the next challenge. And perhaps the most important piece of the showroom puzzle, is to train sales people so they are knowledgeable and competent showroom consultants (I wrote about this previously on the blog in, How Training and E-learning Can Improve ROI).

Years ago, when I was an importer and distributor with several showrooms I coined the term Intelligent Merchandising to represent the approach we developed to help our customers make selections and our sales people more effective in assisting our customers during the selection process. The challenges we faced back then …

Concrete Moisture Leading to Flooring Failures - Is this an Epidemic?

Sheet vinyl  lifting off concrete substrates that looks like blistered skin from a burn, wood flooring turning up at the edges, carpet tiles emitting foul odors from reactions with “wet” slabs.  All of these failures in floor covering occur daily around the country plaguing flooring contractors and end users.  Is this a flooring conspiracy or something more sinister?  Well, it’s not a conspiracy, nothing so colorful as that, and it’s not sinister unless you consider that moisture lurking in the substrates is skulking around waiting to pounce.

What are the reasons for this outbreak of flooring failures?  Have adhesives changed?  Is flooring material different?  Hasn’t concrete been the same for years?  Why is this all happening now?

Adhesives have changed from when solvent carriers were used but adhesives are actually better now.  Flooring products have changed with the onslaught of non-permeable backings which can trap moisture vapor emissions coming from concrete.  Concrete hasn’t ch…

Corporate culture; what does it say about your company?

Culture at a company (corporate culture) is generally developed through the actions of management.  Employees then follow their lead.  “The boss did it this way so it must be the right way.” I share this obvious observation because sometimes leaders do things that ultimately reflect poorly on the company.  This is particularly so during difficult times.


One of the benefits of working with dozens of companies outside the flooring industry is the opportunity to understand their corporate standards and culture by observation.  I recently spoke at a convention for a couple hundred people.  The food was acceptable as you would expect; but the room was dirty and hideous.  The company chose this room because it was the least expensive room available.  The room was so remote and old that most of us didn’t even know that wing of the well-known property existed.  We sat in a dirty room that communicated the company’s own low standards while the corporate president spoke glowingly about their c…