Laminate Executive Forecast: Holding its own against onslaught of WPC, SPC

Home Inside FCNews Laminate Executive Forecast: Holding its own against onslaught of WPC, SPC

Dec. 9/16, 2019: Volume 35, Issue 12

By Reginald Tucker

 

The laminate flooring category continued to fight an uphill battle against the meteoric rise of competing hard surface categories—namely WPC, SPC and all its iterations, which now include hybrid products. In the face of it all, laminate suppliers continued to invest in the category while promoting the attributes that make it a viable alternative today.

Travis Bass
Executive VP, sales and marketing
Swiss Krono
What is your projection for the growth of the category next year?
We foresee 2%–3% growth. What are the growth projections for your company in particular?
We have aggressive growth plans for laminate flooring as the market continues to shift away from Chinese products. What segments and/or products will fuel this growth?
Thicker, water-resistant products give laminate a clear total advantage over vinyl products. Cite a few of your major initiatives achieved in 2019.
Swiss Krono USA is now completing our HDF (coreboard), factory and we continue to invest heavily in product development. The addition of the HDF factory vertically integrates us. Identify the “X” factor that will impact business in general in 2020.
The outlook for 2020 appears to be for steady, moderate eco- nomic growth. Tariff maneuvering and political shenanigans could provide some unexpected impact. Where do you see the greatest opportunities?
Continued improvement of laminate looks and textures along with exploiting laminate’s environmental/sustainability story with the emerging millennial market as a “best choice” for floor covering.

 

Drew Hash
Vice president, hard surface
Shaw Floors
What is your projection for the growth of the category next year?
Laminate will grow in single digits. What are the growth projections for your company in particular?
We will be in line with industry growth. What segments and/or products will fuel this growth?
Single-family homes are popular in this category. Innovations in performance and design mean consumers are placing laminate in numerous areas of the home. Cite a few of your major initiatives achieved in 2019.
Expanding our highly successful REPEL Laminate collection with new, on-trend visuals was a key initiative for 2019. Identify the “X” factor that will impact business in general in 2020.
2020 may feature similar external uncertainties as 2019, which can impact consumer sentiment. Rigid core’s popularity continues to challenge market share, but laminate remains a viable flooring option for consumers. Where do you see the greatest opportunities?
We see opportunities among better-end goods in this cate- gory. Printing and design technologies, along with surface innovations mean these products look and perform better than ever.

 

Dan Natkin
VP, hardwood and laminate
Mannington
What is your projection for the growth of the category next year?
We expect the category to be down low single digits. What are the growth projections for your company in particular?
Up low single digits in 2020. What segments and/or products will fuel this growth?
Moisture resistant/waterproof laminates will continue to lead the charge in this category. They combine the best attributes of laminate (long-term wear performance) with the moisture resistance of vinyl. Cite a few of your major initiatives achieved in 2019.
Further enhancement to our award-winning SpillShield technology. Identify the “X” factor that will impact business in general in 2020.
The X factor is the economy. We expect the category to be challenged again in 2020. While the home centers are increasing sales within the category, independent retail is contracting. Where do you see the greatest opportunities?
A strong economy and home construction market should make it a great year for the category.

 

Adam Ward
Senior product director, laminate and wood
Mohawk
What is your projection for the growth of the category next year?
From an overall laminate market, we see it around that low 1% mark. What are the growth projections for your company in particular?
We forecast mid to high single-digit growth with RevWood, so we see ourselves definitely exceeding the market for laminate flooring. What segments and/or products will fuel this growth?
We’re seeing strong performance in both the builder community as well as residential remodel. Cite a few of your major initiatives achieved in 2019.
Beyond the expansion of RevWood into different tiers, we’re definitely focused on RevWood Select in the builder community. We continue to build that out. Identify the “X” factor that will impact business in general in 2020.
There’s a sea of product out there, and it’s confusing for the consumer. We need to make sure we’re continuing to tell the story about what makes us unique and better. Where do you see the greatest opportunities?
We have an opportunity to continue to tell the story about what makes RevWood unique. There’s some additional features we will be rolling out, and we’re excited to share those new innovations.

 

Derek Welbourn
CEO
Inhaus
What is your projection for the growth of the category next year?
I see it growing slightly—3% in 2020. What are the growth projections for your company in particular?
Slightly above the overall category growth rate. What segments and/or products will fuel this growth?
We continue to experience strong growth as we claim share of the laminate segment and grow our new waterproof, rigid core product, Sono. Cite a few of your major initiatives achieved in 2019.
We have invested significantly in our own design center, where our team works continuously to respond to trends and create new products quickly. Identify the “X” factor that will impact business in general in 2020.
The evolution of water resistance as well as a continued focus on style and design coupled with affordable products for the consumer. Where do you see the greatest opportunities?
The combination of leading design, wear performance and cost is a value proposition for laminate that is very powerful. Other categories will have problems competing with this.

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