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Shaw merges Anderson, Tuftex brands into one

November 20/27, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 12

Combined entity to make debut at Surfaces

By Reginald Tucker

 

Screen Shot 2017-11-27 at 10.09.36 AMDalton–What has been rumored for months is now confirmed. Shaw Floors, parent company of the venerable Anderson Hardwood and Tuftex brands, has announced plans to merge the two with the combined entity to be called Anderson Tuftex. The change is effective Jan. 1, 2018.

For Shaw, the deal made sense because both brands have a long heritage in the flooring industry and are a natural fit. According to Carrie Edwards Isaac, vice president, Anderson Tuftex, the brand will take a holistic and consumer-centric approach to marketing and product development. This, she said, is based on the fact today’s consumer demands a simplified shopping experience both in-store and online.

“The entire consumer journey is changing and has been for quite some time,” Edwards Isaac said. “Consumers are finding inspiration everywhere and are more directly connected with brands than ever before. But purchasing flooring is complicated and consumers feel pressured to get it right. At Anderson Tuftex, it’s about simplicity. We don’t want to overwhelm consumers with options but, rather craft intentional designs that serve as a canvas for their lives.”

Anderson Tuftex will be showcased at Shaw Connect 2018 winter markets and will unveil the new premium brand at Surfaces in Las Vegas. The future of these two legacy brands will focus on their new, collective brand identity by working with their valued retail partners to drive premium floor covering sales.

“We’re committed to elevating the discussion with our customers and providing them with a beautiful product mix that they’re eager to sell,” said Trey Thames, vice president of sales, Anderson Tuftex. “By offering bold, yet timeless patterns and foundational colors in both hard and soft surface flooring products, we’re empowering our customers to create a seamless shopping experience for consumers.”

Retailers buy in
For many Shaw retailers the announcement doesn’t come as a surprise, although it is welcomed news.

Screen Shot 2017-11-27 at 10.09.48 AMTodd Wheeler, owner of Wheeler’s Flooring in Salinas, Calif., said that while he initially questioned the merging of an East Coast line (Anderson) with a West Coast mill (Tuftex), he believes the pairing ultimately makes sense. “It goes hand in hand with the trends in the industry of carpet losing share and—in the last few years—the growth of hard surfaces. Tuftex has a good rug program; Anderson is a good hardwood brand. To have the brands merge and complement each other I believe will be a good marriage.”

As a result of the merger, Wheeler said his Tuftex rep will now also have the Anderson line, which makes sense instead of having two people. He also believes Shaw “needed to do something” with Tuftex and not let it fall away and be gobbled up like other mills. “Shaw really is trying to hold onto that brand, which is smart because Tuftex makes great carpet.”

In his Salinas showroom, hard surface products are generally positioned on one side of the floor, across from soft surfaces. However, when the Anderson Tuftex displays come in, Wheeler will likely pair them together in one common area, which he believes will stimulate sales. “As a Kool-Aid drinking Shaw customer who has had a great relationship with Shaw over the years, I am excited about this branding.”

Dean Howell, owner of two Moda Floors & Interior stores in Atlanta, got his first glimpse of the Anderson Tuftex pairing at the Shaw Flooring Network winter market earlier this year (FCNews, Jan. 30. Feb. 6.) Like Wheeler, he believes in the combined marketing strategy. “Shaw’s plans to re-energize the Anderson brand is exciting. They’re trying to elevate the image of Anderson the way they are doing with the Tuftex line.”

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Shaw Floors to supply Anderson Hardwood in Midwest

Screen Shot 2016-01-13 at 9.40.49 AMDalton—Shaw will directly supply Anderson Hardwood products to retail customers in the Midwestern U.S. Effective immediately, retailers in Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin can now purchase Anderson Hardwood through their Shaw Floors hard surface sales representatives.

“Anderson has been a trusted brand in hardwood flooring since 1946 and that won’t change,” said Jeff Sills, executive vice president, hard surface sales. “We are more than prepared to service our Midwest customers with ample inventory levels and the quality of support you’ve come to expect from Shaw.”

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Anderson: A deep-rooted history helps continue to lead the way

May 11/18, 2015; Volume 29/Number 3

By Jenna Lippin

A leader in hardwood style and innovation, Anderson Hardwood Floors has remained true to its roots in its rich 69-year history. The company touts its spearheading of engineered hardwood, along with handscraping techniques and visuals. Going forward, Anderson continues to work on its progression in high design, along with making the most of abundant species like maple, oak and hickory.

Natalie Cady, who recently moved from the hard surface marketing director at Shaw—Anderson’s parent company—to a new role as hardwood category manager, has witnessed an “evolution” in Anderson over the last two years.

“The next revolution is making sure we take all of the textures out there and develop even more,” she said. “Oak, maple and hickory are the predominant species for the future as they make up the readily available wood; they are sustainable as well as consistently available. We know what resources we have and we go after textures we can create, like wire brushing and contouring. There is good, old fashioned oak, for example, but by adding a little texture it looks like a whole different product.”

For the last year Anderson’s slogan has been “The fine art of flooring,” which Cady believes is apropos because a “floor is a piece of art and it should take on a life of its own.” In a home she believes “you need to develop everything in the room from the floor up,” seeing the floor as a canvas. “‘Fine art of flooring’ means we’re making the right textures and colors for the future and not just trying to mimic the past.”

With that, Anderson has started to develop more colors for its palette while making sure to cater to the latest trends such as grays and what Cady calls “griege,” a blend of gray and beige that “tones it down a little.” She added that with hardwood “you have to be careful with gray because it has a tendency to appear purple or blue, so you have to have that right amount of the neutral tone.”

Anderson also manufactures the Virginia Vintage brand, which Cady said is “more elite” in terms of both design and distribution reach. To meet the demands of the higher-end consumer, Virginia Vintage is where Anderson focuses on texture and style, both heavily concentrated. “Cost is not a limitation with this brand. The planks can be longer and wider. There can be a three- or four-step stain process or various levels of stain and texture. There are many levels of stain in which each time [the plank] runs through the process there is a cost involved, yet you attain a piece of art.”

With the Shaw, Anderson and Virginia Vintage hardwood brands, the umbrella company is able to run the gamut in product offerings. Shaw is more driven for mass appeal, Cady said, with selections that move from commodity all the way up to the higher end. “Anderson is a narrowed down product offering; it has some style and design at an affordable price. Then with Virginia Vintage you’re at the higher end with high style and design with products that are a little more evolved in the manufacturing process that is more involved with a lot more layers. If you look at the hierarchy of wood the very top would be Virginia Vintage. Shaw and Anderson would be comparable but one is more broadly based as it makes other product categories (Shaw) and one is a little more focused because the company is all about wood all day long (Anderson).”

 

What the future holds

Moving forward, the Anderson team plans to continue working on high design and meeting the latest trends, along with connecting to the consumer more during her buying process which, of course, begins online.

“As we all know, the consumer goes to a website [an estimated] three times before going into a store,” Cady said. “You have to deliver visually appealing room scenes [on a website], and over the last two years Anderson has been heavily focused on that. We have our intros prominently placed on landing pages, with other room scenes still viewable but no longer on the ‘front’ page.”

Anderson’s technology game plan includes consistently updating Facebook, Instagram and other visually focused social media platforms, along with constantly refreshing the company’s website. Part of the reason Anderson is undertaking these efforts is to appeal to the millennial generation. “We are very glad to hear millennials are going toward wood. We are striving to make sure our technology is lending itself to that generation. Millennials cause two orders really: putting in a new floor in their homes and also the remodel of their parents’ homes, who will finally be ready to remodel when their millennial children move out. Millennials want wood and baby boomers/empty nesters can get the wood they’ve always wanted. We have style and design, along with performance options, in place to satisfy those varying appetites.”

The company is also working on touting the green qualities of its products, in addition to domestic manufacturing. “We want to make sure everybody understands that Anderson products are Cradle to Cradle and GreenGuard certified, and meet CARB 2 regulations,” Cady noted. “All of the environmental aspects that Anderson has always been about center on what it will do to our world first; we think about how to sell the product later. We make product in the United States; we import some, but they are predominantly made here. Style and design is developed in the U.S. Our R&D plant is in South Carolina, an hour away from the production facility. We know exactly what the product will look like coming off of the line, so we can instantly tweak something.”

Anderson has been developing “a tremendous amount of product” set to be released within the next six months. Part of this enhancement includes a wide variety of colors “able to please most consumers’ palettes these days.” The additions will feature the company’s “newest evolution,” taking back clean lines of wood. New textures will be brought to the forefront, following the style of the successful Churchill product under the Virginia Vintage brand. “It has the [strong] visual and a lot of texture, there is a lot going on, but it’s a maple, which has less grain compared to oak and hickory. Then we etch it and black fill it or white fill it. There is texture yet it feels kind of smooth. Textures are what’s next.”

 

 

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Adhesives: Focus on fast installation, healthier indoor environment

Feb. 17/24 2014, Volume 27/number 21

By Jenna Lippin

State-of-the-art technology not only takes floor covering products to the next level, it also advances installation methods, devices and products. With that said, adhesive companies represent a particularly important niche within the industry with new, progressive formulas that translate into faster, easier installations and also lend themselves to healthier indoor environments with low VOCs and various “green” certifications.

AAT

Advanced Adhesive Technology’s (AAT) most recent innovation is a new, thin-spread adhesive for VCT. The reformulated AAT-370 Ultra Premium Thin Spread offers a much faster drying adhesive, resulting in time saving of up to 25%. But, the most important feature of the new acrylic-enhanced formula is its ability to be used over slabs with an in situ RH of 95%. This enhancement will add a margin of safety for flooring contractors that choose AAT-370, without increasing their cost.

AAT-370 dries to a transparent film allowing layout lines to remain visible. It is also installer friendly—AAT-370 spreads easily, has an extended working time (up to 24 hours), and is water resistant and nonflammable. Furthermore, AAT-370 is protected by CleanGuard, a specifically formulated broad-spectrum, antimicrobial agent that protects AAT’s adhesives from microorganisms, such as mold or mildew, in both the wet and dry state.

The CRI Green Label Plus Adhesive Certification Program has certified AAT-370 as a low-VOC adhesive.

Anderson

New from Anderson is Bear Hug, a wood flooring adhesive offered in three formulas: Green Grab, Premium Urethane and 3X Triple Option.

With low odor/low VOCs, Green Grab’s new formula provides easy troweling and is proven to be a non-slumping formula. Further, it has a spread rate of up to 70 square feet per gallon and offers up to 15% more coverage per container than other brands.

Screen Shot 2014-02-24 at 4.43.32 PMPremium Urethane is a one-part, one-day system with permanent bond for on-, above- or below-grade installations. It is warrantied for up to 8 pounds of moisture vapor transmission with proper trowel. Premium Urethane can be applied to multi-ply engineered plank, acrylic impregnated plank and parquet, and plain-back parquet. It offers up to 20% more coverage per container than other brands, the company claims, and has a spread rate of up to 60 square feet per gallon.

Anderson’s third new formula, 3X Triple Option, is a 3-1 application made with 100% solids, has minimal odor and a spread rate of up to 60 square feet per gallon. It  has an early quick grab and rapid strength technology in order to make the surface a true “work on” installation. Additionally, it meets the IIC and STC building code requirements for sound reduction. Triple Option is the only offering that is reusable once opened and provides up to 15% more coverage per container than other brands.

All Bear Hug adhesives can be used with any engineered or Envirocore Anderson product. The company also authorizes the use of Bear Hug on applicable engineered products from competitors.

Bostik

Bostik’s adhesive introductions include Ultra-Set SingleStep2 and GreenForce, both with the company’s AXIOUS Tri-Linking Polymer Technology for exceptional long-term durability and moisture protection.

SingleStep2 contains 1% recycled rubber material, contains zero VOCs  and no water. It can be used to adhere all engineered, solid, bamboo, cork and parquet products designed and recommended by hardwood flooring manufacturers for gluedown applications. There is no restriction on plank width or length and may be used over all properly prepared substrates common to hardwood flooring installations. SingleStep2 can also be used to install plywood, ceramic tile, marble and stone inlays for light commercial or residential applications.

Offering unlimited moisture vapor protection, SingleStep2 protects hardwood flooring from damage caused by subfloor moisture in concrete slabs. It also offers sound abatement performance equivalent to ¼-inch cork underlayment.

Similar to SingleStep2, GreenForce is easier to spread and clean off prefinished flooring before and after cure, contains zero VOCs and no water. Its high-performance formulation is appropriate for the same flooring products and installations as SingleStep2.

DriTac

The current highlight from DriTac is 7700 Easy Clean 4-in-1, which is a completely green, premium MS polymer sound and moisture control wood flooring adhesive for use underneath engineered hardwood, solid plank and bamboo flooring installations.

By simply changing the trowel, 7700 Easy Clean can be utilized as a 4-in-1 sound and moisture control wood flooring adhesive or as anScreen Shot 2014-02-24 at 4.44.23 PM adhesive only. This type of product versatility and the exceptional green grab it offers help to set it apart from the competition.

Containing zero VOCs, zero solvents and zero isocyanates, 7700 Easy Clean is CRI certified for indoor air quality and has been specially formulated for easy clean up off hardwood surfaces when wet or dry.  The product also spreads easily and has minimal odor.

HPS Schönox

Schönox’s current focus is on Roll and Go adhesive, catering to the growing popularity of LVT.  According to Karen Bellinger, business development, the product has been approved by about 35 manufacturers for LVT installations. Because Schönox actually tests Roll and Go with each flooring product, the company can guarantee it will work with all approved LVT offerings.

When ready to install, a thin layer of Roll and Go is applied to a prepared substrate (Bellinger recommends a Schönox self-leveling product and primer) onto which tiles and/or planks can be installed immediately.

Roll and Go allows users to save time and money, and the overall process is easier on installers as they can remain upright when rolling on the product. The nature of Roll and Go also allows for a damaged plank or tile to be easily removed and repaired.

 

 

 

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Manufacturers debut offerings for spring season

By Jenna Lippin

Volume 26/Number 22; March 18/25, 2013

While we are only a few months into this year, there already is a renewed sense of optimism. Surfaces has quickly come and gone, but this does not mean opportunities are over for manufacturers to showcase new goods. Some are revamping existing lines while others are unveiling brand new designs. Continue reading Manufacturers debut offerings for spring season

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Shaw 2013 intros focus on soft, hard innovations

By Steven Feldman

Volume 26/Number 20; February 18/25, 2013

Hicksville, N.Y.—Shaw Industries is bullish this year. Excitement has been built by virtue of everything from consumer sentiment to its plethora of product introductions for 2013, many of which set new benchmarks for the company in terms of styling and technological innovation.

“I’m most excited about the attitude we are seeing from our customer base and the excitement that seems to be building about 2013,” said Randy Merritt, president of Shaw. “For the last five years, we would come into every new year hoping for a better year. I think evidence shows this year will be better. I’m excited our customers are excited—they are seeing traffic, and they saw a good end to 2012. There are physical signs home building is increasing, and that means remodeling is going to increase. So it’s not just hope this time.” Continue reading Shaw 2013 intros focus on soft, hard innovations

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Anderson announces "Fall for America" sale

Popular sale features $300-off hardwood products

Fountain Inn, S.C—With impressive incentives and a robust discount offer, Anderson Hardwood is once again announcing its Fall for America sale. Introduced for the first time in fall 2011, the sale was positively received by U.S. consumers who responded to Anderson’s genuine messaging and American-made quality production process. Virtually all Anderson Hardwoods are made in the USA and the Anderson Fall for America promotion celebrates that fact along with an industry-leading consumer coupon offer and aggressive retail sales associate spiffs.

Continue reading Anderson announces "Fall for America" sale

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Finishing the job to protect the product

Execs discuss the latest in coating systems

by Louis Iannoco

While retailers and end users continue to marvel at the looks of some of the latest wood flooring products and technology used to create them, sometimes lost in the shuffle are the ingredients manufacturers throw into the mix to protect that look. Coating systems and finishes continue to be tweaked and perfected with the goal of creating unmatched clarity, while protecting the product from stains and scratches.  Continue reading Finishing the job to protect the product

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Economy, End of ITC case helping sales

by Matthew Spieler

Ask people from just about any sector and they will say since December, sales have been steadily picking up. While this is welcome news for anyone who has suffered through the economic downturn, for those in the wood business, it is a breath of fresh air.

As one of the hardest categories of products—flooring or otherwise—hit by the recession thanks to being tied so closely to the housing market, among other factors, a positive growth trend could not have come at a better time. Though final figures for 2011 are not yet available, most experts said the year should have ended slightly better than 2010, which would be the first time the wood category finished in the black since 2006 when the industry reached its peak in sales at more than $2.5 billion. Continue reading Economy, End of ITC case helping sales