The Dixie Group reported third quarter sales of $102.7 million, for the period ending Sept. 30, 2.3% above the same quarter of last year. For the nine month period, total net sales increased 4.3% to $307.4 million vs. $294.8 million in the previous year. The company had a loss from continuing operations for the third quarter of $547,000 as compared to a profit of $573,000 in the same quarter last year. On a year-to-date basis, the company had a profit from continuing operations of $104,000 for 2017 as compared to a loss of $2.6 million for the first nine months of 2016.

”For the quarter, our floorcovering sales were up year-over-year by 3.1% while the industry, we believe, was down slightly,” said Daniel K. Frierson, chairman and chief executive officer. “ For the year-to-date, our floorcovering sales were up 5.9% against prior year and a market that was marginally down year-over-year. Our commercial product sales for the quarter were down 5.5% while the market was down in the mid-single digits. However, our commercial product sales were up 1.3% for the year-to-date relative to 2016 while the industry, we estimate, was down low single digits. Our residential products were up 7.4% for the quarter as compared to the third quarter of 2016, with the industry up in the low single digit range. For the nine month period ending in September, our residential product sales were up 8.3% compared to the same time period in 2016, while the industry, we believe, was up only in the low single digits.”

Following Royalty Carpet Mills shutting its doors in June, the company hired a number of Royalty associates in its sales and west coast manufacturing operations as well as taking over and restarting the Royalty Porterville yarn plant during the quarter. For September, Dixie’s overall sales were negatively impacted as a result of the storms affecting Florida and Texas, according to Frierson.

The company also reported that the launch of its Masland and Dixie Home Pet Protect luxury vinyl flooring product lines doing favorably. By the end of the third quarter, the company had shipped over 1,200 retail displays between the two product lines. In addition, the Calibre Line of luxury vinyl flooring products continues to grow as the company sees the results of continued placement in the specified commercial market.

"Our order entry volume has improved significantly early in the fourth quarter,” added Frierson. “To offset higher operating costs, we have announced a price increase effective in January 2018.”

The company also reported the appointment of David Hobbs as president of Dixie Commercial. In his new role, Hobbs will now be responsible for both the Masland Contract and Atlas Carpet Mills commercial brands. The company will maintain distinct sales forces for Masland Contract and Atlas. The commercial-business organizational change follows the successful residential business change the company made in 2009, consolidating the residential management structure but maintaining three distinct brands and sales forces.

The consolidation of the two commercial brands is part of the company’s profit improvement plan to improve profitability through lower cost and streamlined decision making, aligning processes to maximize efficiency. The plan includes consolidating the management of Dixie's two commercial brands under one management team, sharing operations in sales, marketing, product development and manufacturing.

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