Huntersville, N.C.—Residential carpet may be stagnant in a waterproof world, but don’t tell that to Charlie Kennedy. The longtime Gulistan and Phenix executive has launched Revolution Mills with a focus on innovation and performance.
Kennedy began his career at Bigelow in Greenville, S.C., before moving to Pinehurst, N.C., to begin working with JP Stevens, later named Gulistan. After more than 30 years in product development he became president. Five years later, he sold his interest and launched Phenix Flooring in Dalton.
Since its inception in 2016, Revolution Mills has strived for quality. The company currently offers high performance, soft solution-dyed polyester along with carpet tile and SPC. It is headquartered here, with product distribution out of Dalton.
Zach Kennedy, Charlie’s son, and his son-in-law, Chris Williams, run the day-to-day operations. Zach Kennedy, who heads up sales and marketing, most recently spent nearly 14 years at Phenix selling to national accounts, distributors and local dealers. Williams, who heads up the company’s operations, brings extensive knowledge to Revolution Mills from his 23 years at Lowe’s, notably serving as the hardwood flooring, area rug and paint merchant. His most recent role was overseeing Lowe’s global sourcing team while based in Shanghai.
Kigali, Rwanda—Howard Brodsky, co-founder, chairman and co-CEO of CCA Global Partners, Inc., received the 2019 International Rochdale Pioneers Award. The award was presented by the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA), a consultative organization of the United Nations, here on Oct. 16 during the biennial ICA Global Cooperative Conference.
Recognized as the "Nobel Prize of Cooperative Business,” the Rochdale Award is given out every two years to an individual who has made the greatest impact across the world through the innovations of shared ownership, specifically through the cooperative business model that anchors value with members, employees, customers and their communities.
In its history, the ICA has recognized only 16 individuals with Rochdale Awards for their commitment to cooperatives around the world. “Throughout my career, I have felt that businesses should be more than profit centers,” said Brodsky. “While profit is important, it is equally if not more important that businesses be a force for good. The cooperative business model epitomizes capitalism with a conscience. A more inclusive future is in our grasp. Shared ownership advances shared opportunity, shared wealth and ultimately shared hope. I am honored and humbled by this recognition.”
This recognition highlights Brodsky’s career of innovation by re-envisioning conventional business through shared ownership. Dedicated to what he calls the contemporary cooperative business model, Brodsky has fundamentally transformed family businesses in the U.S. in an array of industries by structuring the companies as cooperatives–where putting people first, not profit, and leading with values is the task of every day.
“As a visionary leader and entrepreneur, Howard has a passion for invention. He does not simply talk about the future–he leads through his actions,” said Trebor Scholz, director of the Platform Cooperativism Consortium. “Howard is a rare leader that combines vision, innovation, gumption and connectivity in all aspects of his work.”
St. Louis—Somerset Hardwood Flooring has earned NWFA/NOFMA Mill Certification from the National Wood Flooring Association. NWFA/NOFMA certification assures a manufacturer’s wood flooring meets or exceeds industry standards for grade, configuration, moisture content and average board length.
“NWFA is pleased to welcome Somerset as the newest NWFA/NOFMA Factory Finished member,” said Michael Martin, NWFA president & CEO. “It’s encouraging to see the factory finished segment of the NOFMA Program grow right alongside the increased demand for factory finished products in the marketplace. This is a clear indicator of the unification of our domestic manufacturers, and the continued value they see in the NWFA/NOFMA Program.”
Certified mills must meet rigorous production standards, and are inspected a minimum of two times per year to ensure consistent grade standards are maintained.
“Somerset Hardwood flooring has a balanced product portfolio of both solid and engineered wood flooring products,” said Paul Stringer, Somerset vice president of sales & marketing. “We continue to see great potential in the solid sector, and certifying our factory finished products to the NWFA/NOFMA Program is an effective way for us to add value to our line and to communicate that to our customers.”
A full list of NWFA/NOFMA certified manufacturers can be found on the NWFA website.
Mountville, Pa.–Jerry Sporich, founder and president of the North American business unit of LM Flooring, which merged with AHF Products in July, will retire effective Oct. 31. Following Sporich’s retirement, Andy Piwonski will be promoted to vice president & general manager and Kevin Whaley will be promoted to vice president of sales and product.
Sporich created the Dallas-based wood flooring company in 2001 to service the LM Flooring business in the U.S. and Canada. During Sporich’s tenure, the company said he led with vision and innovation, guiding the company in its mission of bringing exceptional styling and value to the hardwood flooring industry.
“Jerry has 18 years of tremendous industry impact growing the LM Flooring business in North America, innovating fantastic products and creating long-lasting, personal connections with our customers,” said AHF Products President and CEO, Brian Carson. “These products and relationships have built the company’s reputation as a leader in the hardwood flooring industry. I want to personally thank Jerry for his dedication to serving and creating value for our customers. I am grateful for his willingness to extend the date of his retirement to support the partnership with AHF Products creating a seamless transition.”
Sporich, who had been planning to retire just prior to AHF Products’ acquisition of LM Flooring, said, “It’s been rewarding to see this company grow and develop, and to help build a team dedicated to providing world-class service and great products that will continue to drive the business forward. The marriage of LM Flooring with AHF Products is a wonderful move that will allow the businesses to grow to the next level."
New York— Tarkett is set to launch its New York Atelier, located adjacent to one of the main design districts on Madison Avenue. Designed by Huntsman Architectural Group, this 10,000-square-foot space is designed as a modular, sophisticated, co-creation workspace. It is meant to inspire collaboration and creativity and encourage the design community to use it as a destination for hosting events and presentations.
Through a partnership with trend studio Edelkoort Inc., the space will also be a destination for a series of curated exhibits. With a larger footprint in New York City, the Atelier offers the opportunity to experience all Tarkett solutions in one space and will house a variety of flooring platforms, including LVT, broadloom, modular carpet, Powerbond, rubber, Lino, VET, SVT and vinyl sheet.
“We listened to the NYC A&D community about what they wanted out of a space,” said Chris Stulpin, chief creative officer for Tarkett North America. “They wanted a space where they could be inspired and perhaps learn something (Edelkoort revolving exhibits), they wanted a space where they could work and lay out projects (co-working area), they wanted a space to socialize (communal dining table, open kitchen and staircase), that was really flexible (mobile conference rooms) and they wanted a space where they could easily interact with our brand (accessible samples—help yourself). All these considerations were embedded into the design for our customers’ experience. You can come to our space to work, play, meet up and be inspired.”
Tarkett will celebrate the grand opening of its New York Atelier October 30, with an invitation-only panel discussion called Circular by Design, curated by trend studio Edelkoort Inc., and featuring Jessica Schreiber of Fabscrap, Dhruv Raina of Tarkett and designers Suzanne Tick and Zero Waste Daniel, moderated by trend analyst Philip Fimmano of Edelkoort.
Allentown, Pa.–Xpress Global Systems (XGS) has expanded into eastern Pennsylvania by opening a new service center, near here. The facility is located on the banks of the Lehigh River in the nearby borough of Fountain Hill. The company said it expects to employ office personnel, warehouse workers and truck drivers on both a full-time and part-time basis.
“I am very excited about opening this strategic location in eastern Pennsylvania,” said Jeff Null, vice president – operations. “We continue to see strong growth in our company, and this facility is necessary to provide increased capacity to our network. We look forward to welcoming our new associates to the XGS team and to continue delivering excellent service to our customers.”
In addition to offering LTL (Less-Than-Truckload) transportation solutions, the company also provides warehousing and distribution services across the country with more than a million square feet of storage in key demographic locations.
Louisville, Ky.—Daltile officially launched its new Tread line of 2cm outdoor porcelain pavers this week at the Hardscapes North America (HNA) tradeshow, held here. Also featured are Daltile outdoor vertical porcelain tiles that coordinate with Tread products to create stunning outdoor living spaces.
Daltile’s new Tread program offers the looks of wood, quartzite, assorted stone, slate, French limestone and Belgian bluestone in durable porcelain pavers that are said to be fade-proof, stain-proof, scratch-resistant, fade-resistant, fire-resistant and slip-resistant.
“In recent years we have seen the continued growth of outdoor living spaces, signifying that this trend is here to stay,” said Phil Graves, sales director for Daltile. “Porcelain tile is well-suited for outdoor areas, due to the unsurpassed durability of the material and its inherent ability to withstand the harshest of conditions. Porcelain is also easy to maintain, outperforming many other outdoor materials.”
The new Tread Porcelain Paver program is made up of six collections, including two new assortments and four popular existing collections. New for 2019 are Commissary and Assemble. Commissary brings the rustic beauty of natural wood to exterior floors and is available as 24 x 24 or 16 x 48 porcelain pavers. The Assemble assortment of porcelain pavers offers unique, stone-look visuals for a contemporary, modern offering. Available in a large-format, 32 x 32 paver, Assemble can be coordinated with the new Assemble interior flooring tiles to create a seamless look from indoors to outdoors.
The existing porcelain paver collections that are now part of the Tread line include Ambassador, Diplomacy, Delegate and Dignitary. Ambassador is inspired by fine-grained quartzite found in the Swiss Alps, and is available in a 16 x 48 size and two distinct colors. Deftly delivering the quiet strength and visual beauty of quarried Belgian bluestone, Diplomacy is available in two hues. Two sizes of porcelain pavers–24 x 24 and 20 x 40–pair with a coordinating brick-joint mosaic and trim package. Delegate is a sedimentary slate-inspired design offering a rich graphic with depth and gentle color movement, available in a 20 x 40 size. The 24 x 24 Dignitary replicates French limestone embedded with fossil layers and natural veins.
“Our new Daltile Tread Porcelain Paver collections are by far the best-looking outdoor paving materials on the market today,” said Laura Grilli, lead product designer for Daltile. “Combining our porcelain pavers with their coordinating vertical porcelain tiles easily creates outdoor living spaces that are every bit as luxurious and high-style as today’s indoor living spaces.”
Assemble, Ambassador, Diplomacy, Delegate and Dignitary offer coordinating vertical porcelain tiles and mosaics, ideal to use as the feature wall behind an outdoor barbecue, the backsplash of an outdoor kitchen or the face of an outdoor fireplace, creating a cohesive look in exterior living spaces.
Salem, N.J.—Jack Ganley, president of Mannington Commercial, will retire on December 31, 2019. He joined Mannington in this capacity in 2004. Upon Ganley’s retirement, Tom Pendley, Mannington Commercial’s senior vice president of marketing, will be promoted to the role of president, Mannington Commercial.
Ganley has led the way for Mannington Commercial’s growth over the years and leaves a legacy of leadership and innovation for the business. During his tenure, Ganley implemented the “Choices” strategy and upgraded sales, marketing and products resulting in steady organic growth. He also directed the integration of Burke and Amtico into the Mannington Commercial business.
Previously, he had been with Lees Carpets, where he began as a manufacturing trainee in 1976 fresh out of Villanova University, and rose through the organization to become president of Lees in 1995 and Burlington House in 1998.
“Jack’s leadership and thoughtful, innovative approach to how he conducts business have left an indelible mark on Mannington,” said Russell Grizzle, president and CEO. “His commitment to the company, its values and our customers were always at the forefront and we wish him much health and happiness in his retirement.”
Bethany, Conn.—Laticrete, a leading manufacturer of construction solutions for the building industry, has promoted Ron Nash to the newly formed position of senior vice president of sales and marketing and Sean Boyle to the newly formed position of vice president of market intelligence and channel management. The promotions are an integral part of the company’s multi-year restructuring to realign the sales teams to focus on specialized business segments that enrich the customer experience.
"The markets and clients we serve evolve rapidly,” said Edward Metcalf, Laticrete North America president and chief operating officer. “We must continually assess our approach to ensure all human and material assets are optimally allocated to anticipate and satisfy our customers' increasingly complex needs. Ron and Sean are proven, effective and energetic leaders. Both have made major contributions in keeping Laticrete and our clients relevant and competitive. These important organizational enhancements reflect ongoing improvements across many functions including product innovation, technology and marketing strategy. We are excited about the future and look forward to the immediate positive impact these leadership changes will bring to our innovation efforts."
Nash’s responsibilities will directly encompass the sales, marketing and technical services departments. His new role will optimize and align all outwardly directed activities and increase the focus on anticipating and meeting current and future customer needs.
Boyle will lead all corporate activities regarding the collection, interpretation and dissemination of market intelligence. He will work with Laticrete teams to identify the most effective approach for each sales channel, provide mentorship and guidance to the innovation team and offer insights into future marketing and sales planning.
Hammond, La.—RollMaster Software has fully integrated with Android’s handheld wireless barcode device. This development makes warehouse barcoding simpler, more affordable and more efficient for flooring dealers across the U.S. and Canada, according to the company.
RollMaster Software’s Barcode Software & Equipment allows even small flooring retailers to utilize barcode management for POS, stock check, price check, receiving, physical inventory and assigning installers to work orders. Now, the technology has advanced to the point where a handheld device can deliver all this functionality with an improved user experience and mobility. “Wireless warehousing has reached an all-new level of innovation for flooring businesses,” said Kelly Oechslin, product marketing manager, RollMaster Software.
A major benefit of the new device is the user interface, which delivers a modern screen, touch capability, a QWERTY keyboard and the familiar Android look and feel. The device can be used for barcoding without Wi-Fi, and doubles as a regular smartphone with the addition of a SIM card and mobile service.
“The Android device is incredibly easy to setup, train and use,” said RollMaster trainer, Dan Seago. “It’s also much less expensive than the traditional Triton gun/Tricoder. That all makes the customer’s life easier. Our customers love the ability to slip the device into a pocket while on the go. It frees up warehouse personnel from being tied to their desks.”
RollMaster launched the integration with an Android device, but the technology also works on iPhones and all other smartphones with the addition of an integrated barcode scanner attachment.