Posted on

Marquis: The best is yet to come in hard surfaces

November 6/13, 2017: Volume 32, Issue 11

By Ken Ryan


Screen Shot 2017-11-13 at 10.11.22 AMIt is not uncommon these days for a mid-sized carpet mill to get involved in hard surfaces and try to catch the wave that is the LVT/WPC/rigid core movement. What is uncommon is for that mill to have genuine success to the tune of double-digit growth year over year.

Marquis Industries made the leap into the luxury vinyl world nine years ago. Rather than dabbling in it, the company went full-court press, expanding its product portfolio every year as it continued to grow. In fact, 2016 was a record year for Marquis Industries in hard surface products, fueled by its LVT collections—LVP, WPC and SPC (rigid core products). This year, Marquis has introduced new constructions, specifications and visuals to position the company as a premier source of waterproof vinyl flooring in residential and commercial.

“We’ve been extremely fortunate and have had phenomenal growth over the past year and expect it to continue into 2018 and beyond,” said Kevin Howell, vice president, hard surface division. “Our intention is to win, to deliver unparalleled support to our partners in the industry and continue to develop and deliver products of value to our loyal customer base.”

Marquis is winning with products like Williamsburg, one of the hot new looks introduced at Surfaces 2017. This multi-width pattern WPC is designed with the latest in grays and tan/browns, and measures 7 x 48 with a 20 mil, ceramic bead finish and an IXPE attached cushion. Customers have been impressed with the company’s transformation from carpet mill to full-line hard surface source. One flooring dealer who had carried Marquis carpet but no hard surfaces bought a container.

Roy Rueb, general manager at Vrooman Carpet, a Golden Valley, Minn., wholesaler, said he has worked with Marquis for 25 years, primarily on the carpet side; he added hard surfaces roughly five years ago, starting with a Marquis luxury vinyl line called Country Home. “They’ve always been a stand-up company, always good to work with, so I had no concerns taking on their hard surface products. And when they did come to us it was obvious they had done their homework. They had gone to China and did their research, so I felt comfortable taking it on. In fact, we have actually done quite well with it, starting with Country Home; we now have four collections.”

Rueb said the company is doing quite well with Marquis WPC and will add rigid core when the product comes online soon. “We should have everything covered in that category by then. In hard surface, [Marquis] luxury vinyl hands-down has been phenomenal.”

Vrooman doubled its business with Marquis last year, mostly on the LVT side. “The carpet side stayed consistent but hard surface was significantly more. It is up again this year although not double, maybe 20% up. It’s been a good partnership.”

Likewise, Rob Quinn, owner of Quinn Distributors in Milwaukee, has been doing business with Marquis for 20-plus years, and until recently was a soft surface wholesaler only. “We both saw the writing on the wall that hard surface was coming. We got into it together.”

Although initially hesitant to go to market in hard surfaces with a carpet mill, Quinn said he was duly impressed with Marquis’ offerings, which he said are well engineered and thicker than most; the results bear that out. In 2017, Quinn estimates he will do between $1 million and $1.5 million in business with Marquis, and two-thirds of that will come in hard surface. Quinn represents three LVT suppliers; however, 80% of that business comes from Marquis. He particularly likes the visuals found in the Montana and Granite Falls SKUs. “Marquis does a fantastic job with styling, color and pricing; they have expertise in how to price things,” he said. “What I like is that they don’t have too many SKUs in any one category. We’re not the kind of distributor that’s going to stock 25 shades of green, so this works out well for us.”

According to Marquis’ Howell, the manufacturer will be introducing style and performance with the new designs in 2018 as the company expands the breadth of its product offerings.


Posted on

Carpet: Style and performance define 2016 intros

November 21/28, 2016: Volume 31, Number 12

By Ken Ryan

Carpet mills ratcheted up their R&D efforts in 2016 like never before to deliver to the market a constellation of compelling products that cover all the important bases: style and design, durability, softness, and stain and pet protection.

Following is a closer look at the some of the top introductions and innovations from 2016:

Beaulieu Group
screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-53-20-pmSo Suede and Mulberry have been successful additions to Beaulieu’s Stylish Beauty collection featuring 24 new PermaSoft fiber offerings. These products incorporate Beaulieu’s patented Precision Control Twist (PCT) technology, which creates dimensional color and texture throughout the yarn bundle to produce unique surface characteristics when manufactured. “The art is our ability to combine a variety of fibers with different colors, sizes, lusters and dye abilities which then blend together in varied twist capacities creating a unique face canvas,” said Tom Ellis, chief marketing officer. “We enhance the beauty of the fiber with tuft technology to highlight the organic nature of the stria.”

Ellis noted the organic nature of the technology minimizes the appearance of soil, stain and wear. He said the response to the collection has been “tremendous with So Suede and Mulberry resonating with our customers in a phenomenal way. Our customers have featured this product in all their displays because the consumer acceptance has been so great.”

Two 2016 introductions, Scenic City and Cornerstone, offer what Ellis termed “a sophisticated alternative to what they have seen on the market at an affordable price point.”

Engineered Floors
Bolstered by new introductions in both the commercial and residential markets, 2016 has been a year of unprecedented growth for Engineered Floors.

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-52-42-pmPentz Commercial Flooring Solutions is being marketed as a “bold new day” for Main Street. According to company executives, Pentz promises maximum performance, leading warranties and features, backed by competitive pricing. The three collections, Essentials and Formation (modular) and Prismatic (modular and broadloom), are made with the company’s Encore SD Ultima Nylon with Nexus backing. The products are available via QuickShip.

FlexBac is the first premium backing system offered within the entry-level residential product category. FlexBac is noted for its flexibility and dimensional stability. Another plus is its anti-delamination warranty. “FlexBac has no latex, thus increasing the ease of installation by being lighter, more flexible and softer while saving time, energy and money,” said Mike Sanderson, vice president of product marketing.

Engineered Floors’ Dream Weaver made news with its lifetime pet warranty, which promises “a lifetime of relief for you and your pet.” The distinctive purple shield assures the polyester or nylon carpet is warranted against accidental stains caused by dogs or cats.

Marquis Industries
screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-52-51-pmMarquis Industries continues to enjoy success with its soft yarn program, led by Soft Luxury, an 80-ounce solution dyed PET fiber that is the mill’s largest volume producer. The company introduced junior versions of Soft Luxury during the summer, in 60- and 45-ounce weights.

Other new introductions: Natural Wonder, also an 80-ounce weight that incorporates a natural shield stain protection fiber; and Naturally Soft, a 60-ounce product that combines the best colors from other lines. “Soft Luxury is our No. 1 product and has a beautiful finish and luster level,” said Mike Lindberg, executive vice president, Marquis Industries. “Dealers are asking for soft yarn and ours is as soft as anything in the industry.”

Marquis Industries’ secret sauce is its extrusion plant that produces millions of pounds of continuous filament solution-dyed polyester and nylon. These cones of yarn are then processed in a computer-controlled twisting and heat set plant. Every yarn SKU is regulated to ensure products are made to the same high-quality specification every time.

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-52-27-pmSmartStrand Forever Clean, installed in more than 7 million homes and heralded for its durability, stain resistance and comfort, has become an even “smarter” choice for active families with pets. In 2016 Mohawk enhanced this popular carpet with All Pet Protection, a warranty and protection system that covers all pets, all accidents, all the time.

“We continue to build on the success of the incredibly soft and durable SmartStrand fiber we introduced 10 years ago,” said Seth Arnold, Mohawk’s senior director of soft surface brand. “SmartStrand has evolved into SmartStrand Forever Clean, a carpet that employs Nanoloc technology to lock out spills and make the carpet even easier to clean. And now we are introducing the All Pet Protection warranty because we believe SmartStrand Forever Clean carpet can handle all pets, all accidents, all the time.”

SmartStrand Forever Clean carpet has been tested in zoo habitats for animals of all types. While built-in stain and soil protection that never wears or washes off is inherent in the SmartStrand fiber, there is more to the SmartStrand story, according to Arnold. Nanoloc’s advanced spill-resistant shield, he said, is made from nanoparticles that seamlessly lock together, preventing dirt and spills from settling into the carpet. With SmartStrand Forever Clean, soil is released at three times the rate of other carpets, allowing for a carpet that is easier to clean and requires less vacuuming.

SmartStrand Forever Clean has the added advantage that liquids cannot absorb into the fiber. Compared to nylon carpet, which absorbs up to 5% of its weight in liquid, SmartStrand Forever Clean offers 0% absorption—a huge advantage in a family with pets. “For families who want to make sustainable choices for their homes,” Arnold said, “this carpet is made in part with annually renewable plant-based materials that minimize our usage of limited natural resources. It is also the only carpet fiber certified free from harmful substances by Oeko-Tex.”

Phenix added three new products to its Stainmaster PetProtect line this month—Lyrical, Poetry and Narrative. These multi-color patterned carpets employ innovative technology that allows for varying pile heights, ensuring each carpet has a unique combination of toned neutrals that come together to create a fresh contemporary palette. All three products feature cut patterns so dogs, cats and other household pets won’t snag their claws on loops and cause pulls.

Shaw Floors
screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-52-34-pmShaw continues to develop products featuring its exclusive LifeGuard waterproof backing system, which responds directly to consumers’ need for ease of maintenance combined with the comfort and softness of luxurious carpet. “As we’ve expanded the styles available with LifeGuard—starting with Life Happens, and subsequently with Anso Living—we’ve been able to offer this stylish, high performance product at a variety of price points to meet customers’ purchase decisions,” said Brad Christenson, director of category and product management, Shaw Floors.

Shaw’s research and development teams collaborated to design the waterproof LifeGuard backing system with its R2X stain and soil protection technology built in. This combination works to stop liquid spills and inevitable accidents from reaching the cushion and subfloor, preventing potential odors, wicking and subfloor damage. “LifeGuard successfully elevates our carpet collections making the upgrade a no-brainer for our customers who are searching for the cleanability and durability LifeGuard provides,” Christensen said. “In turn, it provides an easier sales process for our retailers by combining a variety of features into one carpet option they can easily explain and confidently sell, and an innovative, unmatched solutions for their customers’ homes.”

Christensen said LifeGuard has been widely accepted as the go-to product for pet owners and busy families who don’t want the stress of high-maintenance carpet. “With LifeGuard, our retailers have been able to tell their customers that stains and odors can now be 100% removed.”

Shaw plans to deliver more LifeGuard-enabled products to the market in 2017.

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-53-14-pmThe newest styles from Stanton’s Atelier Icon collection—part of the hot-selling Stainmaster PetProtect program—are made with nylon 6,6, making it an ideal choice for rooms with heavy traffic.

The abstract designs and neutral colors of Aspire Waterfall and Aspire Concept overlay each other, creating an artistic blend of random shapes and cross hatched patterns accented by tip sheering. According to Stanton, Aspire Network’s all loop trellis design and interlocking shapes merge to create a double-layered effect; Aspire Compass is a multi-edge look, outlined with diamonds.

Other 2016 introductions include the Relax collection, which provides an avant-garde style with vibrant color accents; and Garden of Eden and Centered, which are treated with antique effects to keep these designs modern, abstract and transitional.

Tuftex is known for natural, solution-dyed and barber-pole yarns that combine with the latest tufting technologies to create differentiated products. This was illustrated with Colorpoint, its first cut and loop line.

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-2-53-07-pmColorpoint technology allows the precise placement of color with the combination of finely controlled yarn feed systems and sophisticated software. “You can get closer to the woven looks yet produced with efficiencies and speed of today’s tufting machines,” said Jim Cusick, director of manufacturing, who explained the cut and loop construction allows for greater diversity of products by blending yarns, densities, texture and construction. “With a finer gauge machine we are able to use softer more luxurious yarns for greater sophistication and still retain superior performance characteristics.”

The first Colorpoint introductions were two-color solution dyed products. This year Tuftex utilized blends of barber poles, natural and over-dyeable yarns to create distinctive, high performance and fashionable looks.

“These Colorpoints are not easy to make but we are committed to respond to the market demand for a new and innovative soft floorcovering product,” Cusick said. Tuftex is able to combine the unique use of yarns with tufting and proprietary dyeing technology to service a full offering of colors and looks that are hard to replicate.


Posted on

Carpet: New innovations, processes refresh soft surface offerings

February 2/9, 2015; Volume 28/Number 16

By Ken Ryan

(First of two parts)

From advanced dyeing techniques to new manufacturing processes to the marketing strength of Stainmaster PetProtect, the carpet category created a buzz at Surfaces. A look at some of the top introductions:

Dixie Home

Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 2.34.06 PMDixie Home expanded its Stainmaster PetProtect line with Rockport, available in a multicolor pattern, and Fantasia, a cut and loop that gives a high-end look like wool. Magic Moment and Serene Moment, two other new products, also come with the PetProtect system.

Paul Comiskey, president, said the prominent location on the main floor generated steady traffic. “We have seen all the major dealers. The reception has been very good.”

Stainmaster PetProtect, first launched in November 2013, saw resurgence in 2014. “There were two distinct jumps with PetProtect during the year,” he said. “It’s being marketed a lot better, and when national advertising kicked in, it took another jump.”

Engineered Floors/Dream Weaver

Dream Weaver Carpet and Engineered Floors introduced its line of nylon carpet—PureColor solution-dyed soft nylon fiber. This continues the same technology and benefits achieved with PureColor solution-dyed PET and PureColor PureSoft Cashmere solution dyed PET fibers. “We see this as the future of nylon carpet,” said James Lesslie, assistant to the chairman. “Our solution-dye technology has revitalized the polyester carpet market; now we are extending our solutiondyed manufacturing expertise to soft nylon fibers.” Unlike most nylon products currently on the market, Engineered Floors’ has built-in stain resistance throughout the polymer.

At Surfaces, the company introduced 12 products in varying color palettes, weights, styles and textures under the Dream Weaver brand. Triumphant Jamboree and Celebration Jubilee were two standouts. The space dye tufting Engineered uses in these collections creates a “flecking” that is interspersed throughout the carpet. “Flecking is really getting the most wow,” said Mike Sanderson, vice president of product marketing.

Show attendees also previewed new merchandising displays as well as a new PureColor soft nylon video that highlights the company’s large carpet production facility, known as the SAM plant.


Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 2.34.00 PMMaggie Bidlingmaier, vice president, residential surfaces, called PetProtect “the hottest product in the soft surface category.” She would have few naysayers following Surfaces 2015, in which new mills added Stainmaster PetProtect to their programs and existing customers expanded their assortments.

Launched in November 2013, this expanded assortment and continued advertising, including TV spots, have really elevated the brand in the eyes of consumers. “We have a lot of momentum going, and maintaining the momentum is the goal at this show,” Bidlingmaier said. “Our goal is to be the premium choice in all carpet segments. Whichever segment you are in, the best choice is a Stainmaster carpet.”

Gary Johnston, senior marketing manager, said even if consumers don’t have pets, the product still has value because of the inherent stain resistance.

T.M. Nuckols, senior director of product strategy, performance surfaces, said in 2015 nine mills are launching PetProtect styles compared to only two last year. “That just shows the market reaction.”

Flooring dealers with PetProtect signage can tie in with an Invista-led pet adoption program run by the ASPCA. At the end of 2014, 300 retail locations participated, and Invista is looking to double that number this year. Invista will help dealers find the right animal shelter in their area.

In addition to PetProtect, several mills are coming out with new TruSoft products in 2015.


Tailored by Lexmark (FCNews, Jan. 5/12) drew a great deal of retail attention at Surfaces. The company said the technology fills the opening between everyday LCL products and expensive patterned goods with the end result being high style at a great value. It is tufted in 100% solution-dyed PET, which allows a range of looks, including wide plank wood.

“When you bring out something like this you have a good feel for it, but you never know,” said Ed Williams, president. “You have to grow up a little bit at a time. This is only our third year in residential.”

Marquis Industries

“Subtler, softer and more sophisticated is what is selling,” said Larry Heckman, CEO of Marquis Industries, which operates the Best Buy brand. The company’s new Soft Harmony and Soft Sensations products speak to this subtler, softer trend. Heckman said these offerings will provide dealers with a value price point ($8.99 to $10.99) that can move and make money. “Because chip polymer prices have come down, we can come out with some value prices.”

Mardi Gras is another introduction and features a cut pile, multi-color barber pole construction, tufted in the company’s Continuous Filament Solution Dyed Super Soft PET.


Fresh off its incorporation into Pharr Yarns, Phenix came to Surfaces armed with its biggest introduction ever, according to Mark Clayton, CEO.

At the heart of these introductions is ColorSense, a proprietary process that delivers discrete yarn placement to produce a complex play of color. Clayton said individually colored yarns are carefully blended to achieve an overall balance of tone and fashioned into a sophisticated palette of multi-colored carpets.

“We positioned our company in the last couple years as a viable alternative for the customer and solidified that last year with retailers by building momentum,” Clayton said. “We want to expand our reach with independents but also increase our position with retail partners.”

Phenix’s new Artistry Collection, available in 40, 60 and 70 ounces, uses the ColorSense polyester fiber. Phenix also came out with new Stainmaster PetProtect carpets.

Stanton Carpet

Stanton debuted eight new products under the Atelier Icon brand that uses the Stainmaster PetProtect yarn system, marking the first time Stanton has marketed products under Stainmaster PetProtect. Additional introductions are scheduled for later in 2015, according to Jonathan Cohen, president.

In all, Stanton introduced 115 products. “We’re getting great feedback on everything we have here,” Cohen said.

Other introductions included the Block Island collection that features two wire Wilton patterns in undyed wool, with geometric patterns and a textural surface in five natural heathered tones. “We’re really trying to step it up with illustrious yarns and keep it in that wheelhouse of salable and different.”

Posted on

Best Buy becoming major industry player

Carpet producer is a total flooring solution provider

Volume 28/Number 6; September 1/8, 2014

By Louis Iannaco

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 10.07.40 AMBest Buy Flooring, a division of Marquis Industries, started out as a carpet specials company in 1996 by two principals, Tim Bailey and Larry Heckman. According to Heckman, the company’s goal since its inception has been to provide flooring dealers with the best styling, value and pricing available in the market. “That has been our philosophy for 18 years and has proven to be a winning combination, along with a much broader product selection.”

Best Buy has grown from a small specialty carpet company with just a few employees to an entity that now employs more than 250 people, including 23 full-time salespeople. It has become a “low-cost, efficient and fully integrated, modern carpet mill with over 750,000 square feet under roof,” Heckman said. All of Best Buy’s carpet manufacturing, processing and fiber production takes place in the U.S.

While Marquis Industries is the parent company of Best Buy Flooring Source, Marquis also serves the industry under A-O Industries, a wholly owned subsidiary, which produces extruded monofilament nylon and polypropylene textured yarn. The yarns are marketed to customers producing products for golf applications, sports fields and synthetic landscaping.

M&M Fibers, a division of Marquis, produces millions of pounds of continuous filament solution-dyed polyester consumed in Best Buy’s residential carpet programs, Heckman added. “This integration has allowed Best Buy to be one of the lowest cost polyester producers in northwest Georgia for the past 10 years.

“Dealers ask all the time what separates us from our competition,” he said. “We tell them, ‘Plenty.’” Heckman considers Best Buy to be a “promotion-oriented carpet mill featuring 21 running line styles offering great values” in a new cut order display program—the Marquis Industries Showcase Display.

“We also offer special values in polyester styles for promotional buyers,” he explained. “The most unique program we offer is an ongoing residential nylon roll-buy.” Marquis buys millions of pounds of nylon yarn in the secondary market, which enables Best Buy to offer select dealers “outstanding values on high style residential cut pile berbers and multi tones in low profile saxonies. The nylon specials provide tremendous value to our dealers.”

The mill also produces a 24- and 28-ounce face weight commercial graphic level loop nylon in six colorways, “producing 4,000 square yards per color,” Heckman noted. Best Buy stocks over 200,000 square yards of loop style carpet for immediate shipment at promotional prices.

Hard surface offerings

In the past 10 years, Best Buy has developed one of the strongest and most competitive high styled hard surface lines on the market. “It was created by the growing demands of our dealers looking for value in hard surface styles,” Heckman said, “both in pallet goods and roll goods.

“Our hard surface line is a strong mainstream lineup of high-styled LVT products, several unique laminates and hand-scraped engineered wood lines along with six series of vinyl lines,” he explained. “We also feature hundreds and hundreds of rolls of vinyl specials in 6 feet, 12 feet, 13 feet, 2 feet and 15 feet x 6 inches at promotional prices.”

One of those dealers looking for hard surface value is HMS in Girard, Kan., and owner Hank Smith has been pleased with what Best Buy can deliver. “We do some backhauling, sending our own trucks to Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 10.07.47 AMGeorgia, and Best Buy has been pretty easy to work with in getting merchandise hauled back to us here.

“We’re involved with many different categories with Best Buy, but the hottest one right now is probably its click LVT,” he added. “A couple of its products, Glenwood Plank and Country Home, are doing extremely well for us. And while we are known as a carpet store and still sell mostly carpet, as far as percentage-wise growth, I’d say LVT is really growing. We do well with some of its sheet vinyl as well as some of its carpet, especially its Doral collection in the low end and Waterford Place on the medium to high end.”

Cami Culpepper, store manager, One Stop Flooring, Pampa, Texas, likes what Best Buy products have to offer, particularly its carpet offerings. “It has really upped its game and come out with many super soft yarns for a very reasonable price. The major mills have emphasized soft and Best Buy is very competitive with them. We stock more Best Buy broadloom products than we do any other carpet. We’re in a region that gets pretty harsh winters, so people here like carpet, and Best Buy fits our demographic well as far as the price and quality you get.

“We also have good response to its vinyl plank,” she added, “especially its floating vinyl plank.”

Another plus from Best Buy for Culpepper is its customer service. “Best Buy is one of the easiest companies to work with because its reps are very personable and quick to get back to you. With other mills you often don’t get very personal service, you have issues and you can’t get anyone to answer. We never have that trouble with Best Buy; its turnaround is extremely quick and they’re quick to resolve any issues, if there are any.”

Jay Hill, manager, Deluxe Carpet, St. Paul, Minn., is another dealer who finds a number of benefits in doing business with Best Buy. He noted the mill makes quality products at price points “that work very well for our store. Best Buy offers quite a range of styles at different costs, and costs are what we look for. Over the years we’ve learned what our clientele is going to spend. Fortunately, Best Buy has some very nice products in the price range we’re looking for.”

And, like Culpepper, Hill is a big fan of Best Buy’s customer service. “Best Buy handles complaints very professionally. It has a great turnaround, and [any replacement carpet needed] is up here very quickly. That means a lot to us as a company—how a carpet mill handles its complaints. Best Buy does an outstanding job on it.”

Dealer response is what drives Best Buy, allowing the company to meet retailer partners’ needs and stay on top of demand. “As a strong carpet manufacturer, our management team travels extensively and is constantly listening and looking to our dealer base to determine their needs,” Heckman explained. “For example, in 2013 we heard from a number of dealers looking for high style and high performance polyester products. Due to the high demand for polyester styles in today’s market, the dealers are requiring higher performance styles and construction.”

At Surfaces 2014, Best Buy introduced eight new carpet styles with 6.8 twists or better in tight gauge constructions. “The dealers responded with outstanding support since our styles have some of the best performance ratings in the industry,” Heckman noted. “It’s all about knowing what the dealers need and responding to them in a timely manner and at the best price.”

According to Heckman, Best Buy has the innate ability to respond quickly to market changes and the needs of the dealer. “In some cases, it’s less than 14 days from conception to finished product. Not many companies can turn product that quick. We can.”

What the future holds

The company’s plans for 2015 call for expansion into new markets and growth in existing arenas, as well as increasing its selection products in ultra soft and super soft fiber styles for the winter market. “We see a big spread between promotional-minded, big value dealers and high end retailers looking for value, high style and high performance,” Heckman said. “We plan to keep both camps happy with our new introductions.”

In the residential and commercial print area, Best Buy is seeking to grow both markets with its newly installed, multi-million dollar Zimmer Chromojet printer at its Artisans facility in Calhoun, Ga. “This state-of-the-art printer is capable of recognizing a picture and computer calibrating it to carpet,” Heckman explained. “This new technology again will change the way carpet is printed and its applications are endless for rugs, specialty logos and hospitality.”

Future endeavors for Best Buy include the introduction of a new Home & Hospitality display featuring top residential patterns along with mainstream styles for hospitality, healthcare and service industries at popular price points. Custom print projects will also be available for all industries.

“If you can imagine it, we can print it,” Heckman said. “That’s exciting, unique and puts Marquis Industries/Best Buy on the cutting edge of another specialty market segment of floor covering.”