Geoff Gordon, executive director, Fuse Alliance welcomed members to the group's annual conference in Dallas, Texas, themed Power Through Partnership, which runs March 6-8, 2022.
While members have been avid users of Zoom since the pandemic, using it to share ideas and troubleshoot issues, this conference is the first time since 2020 that members had the opportunity to meet in person.
The organization is focused on growth and collaboration, having grown by 25 new members since 2020. Gordon reported that revenue for the group was up 32% in 2021 and 12% in 2020. "Overall, our members are very upbeat but very beat up," Gordon said.
The first day of the conference featured supplier presentations. Engineered Floors President James Lesslie gave members an outlook of what to anticipate for the commercial flooring market in 2022. With so many variables in today's marketplace—raw material supply, freight challenges, labor shortages, and Invista's nylon 6,6 fiber plant closure planned for July—Lesslie said pacing is much harder to predict. Lesslie also reported that the company's Commercial Inventory Tool is helping Fuse members win more business by checking real-time inventory levels on J+J and EF Contract carpet, Kinetex and LVT products.
The team at ARDEX Americas presented solutions for flooring installations and tile and stone systems. "To say 2020 and 2021 were tales of two cities is an understatement, said Ben Mack, general manager, Ardex. The company reported 30% growth last year, and Mack said the company continues to invest in digital content to help educate specifiers on selecting the right products and training installers on using those products correctly for successful installations.
Mohawk Group announced its plans to move away from segmentation by commercial categories. Gavin Hendricks, executive vice president-sales, Mohawk Group, shared insight on innovations the company is bringing to market to address sustainability, moisture mitigation issues, comfort underfoot, acoustics and the cost of transporting product.
Schönox reviewed the technologies and services it has available to Fuse members, such as the pump program, which helps contractors pour materials for big jobs. "If you've never used a pump before, or maybe never done a job that size, we offer the pump and the guy who comes with the pump to train your folks on how to use it," said Doug Young, executive vice president, Schönox.