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NeoCon Preview

May 28/June 4, 2018: Volume 33, Issue 25

By Mara Bollettieri


This year NeoCon celebrates its 50th anniversary of showcasing innovative flooring designs for the commercial contract market. The three-day event kicks off June 11 at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago.

The exhibition will feature thousands of new flooring products from a plethora of manufacturers and includes 100 CEU seminars, various programs, special anniversary celebrations, marquee presentations and more.

Following are some of the latest commercial products that will be on display during the show.

Aquafil USA

Econyl regenerated nylon opens up endless possibilities for architects, designers and carpet producers seeking a synthetic covering or carpet that performs beyond expectations.

With the addition of 28 new colors, Econyl yarn is now available in 170 options, all eligible for LEED points. Designers can create performance-driven carpets with Econyl while giving their clients an innovative sustainable solution.

According to Aquafil, Econyl regenerated nylon means no waste, no new resources—just endless possibilities.

Altro Floors

Altro Orchestra resilient flooring has been engineered to create the ideal environment to heal, learn and live. For demanding areas with constant foot traffic, this vinyl sheet provides comfort underfoot and sound reduction. With a grand palette of 40 colors, designers can create the right atmosphere for their spaces.

Altro Orchestra is a 2.8mm sheet vinyl made with 22% rapidly renewable, bio-based content and is certified for low VOCs, thereby helping facilities achieve LEED goals.

American Biltrite

ABPure rubber flooring tiles with Nfuse technology are ready to use right out of the box. The patent-pending treatment allows foot traffic immediately after installation. This tile requires time-consuming set up; is extremely durable against soiling, staining and scuffing; significantly reduces installation downtime; is easier to clean and is declared Red List free.

Cleo Contract

Cleo Contract is a patented construction that combines engineered performance with visual artistry. It has a waterproof, flexible core that is 85% limestone and contains zero PVC, plasticizers, phthalates or chloro-chemicals. Solvent-free, high-fidelity digital imaging offers nearly unlimited design possibilities with nuances in shading and detail. An ultra-low VOC, high-performance clear coating delivers durability and performance.


DuChâteau’s Vinyl DeLuxe Grand offers unique visuals and a European aesthetic in a durable and low-maintenance flooring option. Available in 7- and 9-inch-wide plank formats, Vinyl Deluxe Grand is the latest chapter in luxury engineered floating floors with LuxCor waterproof core, easy click installation and attached HushWalk underlayment. This collection captures the beauty of wood and appeals to residential and commercial customers.

EF Contract

New materials for product development often focus on a single feature—lightweight, durable, tech-enabled. The EF Contract Design Studio played with these concepts in its new Kicks collection, inspired by innovative materials and interpreted through the company’s own innovative tufting and high-performance backing technologies. These inspirations produced a collection that is versatile, while the modular formats enable designers to create complex installations as well as unified, simple fields of texture.

Fletco Carpets

LockTiles is a unique carpet tile shape with laser-cut edges that interlock to fit together in all directions, meter for meter, no matter the size of the area. LockTiles guarantees an effective installation with a homogeneous surface, making the joints less visible. It is for users who want the best in flat-woven carpet tiles and its advantages yet still desire the look of broadloom.


The FreeFlex rubber tile collection embodies true flexibility. A variety of new sizes offer patterns and textures with the durability and resilience of rubber. Sizes include: 6 x 36, 12 x 36 and 18 x 36, These additional sizes complement the company’s existing collection of 12 x 12, 18 x 18 and 36 x 36 tiles.


Pentagonals from Johnsonite, a Tarkett brand, is a collection of three distinct shapes created with Cradle to Cradle certified rubber flooring. Johnsonite has turned three convex polygons into rubber tiles; each is available in Johnsonite’s full rubber flooring line, meaning designers can choose from nearly limitless textures and colors to create truly unique flooring. Rubber flooring is naturally slip resistant with shock-absorbing qualities as well as acoustic properties. The line is also sustainable.

Karndean Designflooring

Textum from the Opus collection was inspired by forms in concrete. It was created as a hybrid abstract wood visual that combines the grain detailing and plank format of traditional European oak flooring with the effect of imprinted concrete. These 36 x 6-inch planks act as a wood visual but can also be used with design strips to create the look of porcelain tile without the practical drawbacks. It features a 20 mil wear layer and a 15-year commercial warranty.

Mannington Commercial

The Cirro collection, a non-vinyl alternative to LVT, is a thermoplastic composite resilient tile that offers the same versatility as LVT. Cirro does not contain any ortho-phthalate plasticizers and is a low-emitting product. In addition, its sustainable construction features recycled content. Available in 20 visuals, it’s designed to bring beauty and sustainability to any space. Featuring 16 wood visuals in 71⁄2 x 48 and 41⁄2 x 36 plank sizes, two stone patterns and two abstract visuals in 18 x 18 and 12 x 24 tile sizes.


Metroflor will showcase the new Aspecta Ten Tilt and Tones collection. The latest LVT design breakthrough pairs four new geometrically and biophilically inspired Tilt tiles with the neutral Tones tile palette. The 24 x 24 tiles are presented in four color groups, each consisting of unique Tilt tile designs that can be paired with two companion Tones tiles. The line is suitable for most commercial environments.

Mohawk Group

Pivot Point ERT responds to a world population that continues to urbanize with patterns and colors inspired by nature and an alternative chemistry, Red List-free, PVC-free enhanced resilient tile. Using biophilic principles, its design motifs can contribute to reducing stress, enhancing creativity, improving well-being and expediting healing. It features wood, textile and stone visuals, and is designed to achieve Living Product Challenge Petal Certification.

Raskin Industries

Raskin’s Elevations AcoustX meets the demand for something unique in the flooded LVT market with fashion-forward, proprietary designs created by Michael Raskin, CEO. The enhanced aesthetics of AcoustX complement the product’s performance.

AcoustX’s pre-attached underlayment offers an acoustic solution while reducing installation time (no sound-abatement layer is required). AcoustX can be installed over most existing hard surface floors. As part of its construction, it includes a solid fiberglass sheet.

Shannon Specialty Floors

Teknoflor Naturescapes HPD is the brand’s first organic sheet good made with ecuran, an organically derived polyurethane composite material processed from plant-based oils such as castor oil and naturally occurring minerals like chalk. This resilient sheet flooring has all the advantages of sheet vinyl—durability, easy maintenance and versatility—without the PVC. It comes in 24 designs across three distinct styles that can be used independently or together.

Shaw Contract

Haven is a collection of modular carpet tiles designed to add the comforts of a residential space to the contract market. It conveys the warmth of the home in all places where people connect with colleagues and friends by utilizing color, texture and pattern. By blurring old distinctions between domestic and commercial spaces, it embraces a more nuanced understanding of how society lives today—finding home wherever creativity takes the end user.

Tandus Centiva

Tandus Centiva, a Tarkett brand, will exhibit Color Play—a product based on the company’s latest design research in education and healthcare spaces. The palette includes 24 hues in each of the three pattern options for a total of 72 product solutions. Color Play features Tarkett’s TechTonic—a shift forward in performance for hard surface floors. Its advanced new polyurethane technology is super tough and resists scratching, abrasions, scuffing and staining.


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Aquafil USA wins 2018 Green Good Design award

Cartersville, Ga.—The European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design awarded Aquafil USA a 2018 Green Good Design award for Econyl Pure, a fiber made of 100% regenerated nylon that is available for piece dye.  

Discarded fishing nets and other ghost gear rescued from the ocean floor along with carpet fluff from spent carpets and other nylon waste is transformed into nylon 6 bulk continuous filament yarn that is so pure, it is white and ready to be piece dyed into any color. While traditional industry recycling processes can result in material degradation, Aquafil’s EconylRegeneration System returns the nylon waste back to its virgin state without any degradation or loss of quality. Best of all, it can be regenerated infinitely.

Green Good Design’s goal is to bestow international recognition to those outstanding individuals, companies, organizations, governments and institutions—together with their products, services, programs, ideas and concepts—that have forwarded exceptional thinking and inspired greater progress toward a healthier and more sustainable universe.

“Never before have designers been able to use piece dyeable fiber knowing not only the product itself is made by regenerating nylon waste, but that the fiber is designed with the ability to be regenerated an infinite number of times,” said Franco Rossi, president of Aquafil USA. “Econyl Pure fiber is an excellent solution for those who want to consume with a clean conscience while enjoying great quality and performance.”

For more information, visit:

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ACR No. 1 starts initial operations

Cartersville, Ga.—Aquafil USA’s initial operations at Aquafil Carpet Recycling (ACR) No. 1 in Phoenix have begun.

ACR No. 1 will deconstruct used nylon 6 carpet back into raw material and provide its Econyl facility in Slovenia with nylon 6 material to be depolymerized. ACR No. 1 is expected to be fully operational by Sept. 1 and will have the capacity to collect and treat 35 million pounds of carpet per year, making a sizeable dent in the waste stream.

The Phoenix facility is part of Aquafil’s strategy to increase its production of Econyl fiber, made from 100% regenerated nylon. ACR No. 2 has been recently incorporated in Sacramento, Calif., with the purpose of setting up a similar operation in Northern California.

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Aquafil USA moves extrusion operation to 100% renewable energy

File_0082Cartersville, Ga.—Aquafil USA is moving its extrusion operation to 100% renewable energy. After March 21, the new, fully-dedicated electric substation will be activated to provide the company with energy coming entirely from green renewable sources—mostly wind and solar.

The extrusion plant on 1 Aquafil Drive was inaugurated in 2006. Eleven years later, thanks to an agreement signed with the City of Cartersville electric department, Aquafil USA is just weeks away from no longer using fossil fuels to power the facility.

Once the new supply system is implemented, the combination of the production of Econyl 100% regenerated nylon along with the green energy flow will allow Aquafil yarn manufactured in Cartersville to score an extremely low carbon footprint.

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Aquafil celebrates 16 years with second U.S. facility

June 8/15, 2015; Volume 29/Number 5

By Nadia Ramlakhan

Aquafil USA | Manuel Llaneras Photography

Cartersville, Ga.—In conjunction with the company’s 16-year anniversary, Aquafil USA celebrated the opening of its second U.S. manufacturing facility May 29 here. The inauguration comes on the heels of a recent expansion of the company’s first manufacturing facility and U.S. headquarters (both located here as well) following a 35% increase in capacity over the last year.

“We have been growing every year for 16 years,” said Franco Rossi, president. “At one point you run out of space. Our business model has always been to deliver to our customers a ready-for-tufting product and our goal is to complement what we were doing in the first facility; it’s a way to confirm our business model and our customers’ needs.”

Joint locations in Cartersville is vital to the company’s success, Rossi said. “A large majority of our customers are local in the sense that they are driving distance from where we are located. The level of customer service required is such that it would be impossible to deliver without having a local facility. It is extremely important for our success and for the satisfaction of our customers.”

The company, known best for its sustainable carpet fiber production and nylon 6 reclamation programs, invested 12 months into the opening of the new plant, during which the building was renovated inside and out to expand into a total of over 300,000 square feet. The site allows for the separation of the fiber extrusion facility from the fiber processing facility, both of which are essential to the production of Aquafil’s Econyl carpet fibers.

Econyl carpet fibers are made from regenerated nylon 6 and are manufactured using reclaimed nylon waste materials from around the world including post-industrial and post-consumer carpet as well as abandoned fishing nets, helping to divert them from landfills. Aquafil products can also be returned at the end of their life cycles to be upcycled into new high quality fibers. The Econyl Global Collection now includes 138 vibrant yarn colors, giving carpet manufacturers and end users the opportunity to design more than 10,000 possible color combinations. The operation is projected to redirect 10.5 million pounds of spent carpet from landfills in 2015 and 30 million pounds in 2016.

The carpet shearing capabilities at the plant allow the company to process more than 10 million pounds of used carpet every year. The Aquafil USA plant is expected to produce more than 50 million pounds of carpet fiber by the end of this year.

“The company has a great sustainability story,” said Bob Peoples, executive director, Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE). “After 16 years, they employ hundreds of people in Georgia and produce solution-dyed nylon from recycled carpets and fishing nets. While actual recovery of the nylon 6 takes place in Europe today, plans are to put an Econyl facility in the United States in the future.”

Since its inception in 1999, Aquafil has evolved from a three-person company in a 20,000-square-foot space to a manufacturer of some of the highest quality sustainable carpet fibers, taking up nearly half a million square feet in production space, with plans to continue growing in the marketplace.

“Unfortunately, carpet is a mature product,” Rossi said. “Because there are so many alternatives to carpet today, the only way we can grow is to outpace our competitors. This means we need to invest in better services and processes to make things more customer friendly.”

One way to do this is by introducing new technology. Rossi hopes to begin producing raw materials at the plant in Cartersville through a process called “back integration. We’ll become more self sufficient and have better control of our production process.”

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Aquafil USA expanding facility in Georgia

aquafil-usa-expanding-cartersville-fullCartersville, Ga.—Fiber firm Aquafil USA said it will spend $20 to $25 million to expand its 132,000-square-foot facility in here.

The expansion will reportedly increase capacity by 50%.

President and CEO Franco Rossi said during a press conference that Aquafil is going to add a second production facility and refurbish a building previously used by Bosch to manufacture car parts.

The refurbishment could be done by June.