Mullican Flooring President Neil Poland announces a company expansion during a press conference today at Mullican’s Johnson City, Tenn., headquarters and manufacturing site.

Johnson City, Tenn.-based Mullican Flooring said it is growing its workforce and adding another production line for solid prefinished hardwood flooring at its headquarters and manufacturing site. The expansion represents a $6 million investment and aims to position the company for growth in 2010.

“This not only represents growth in our workforce and production, but it also shows we are providing a stable work environment for our 135 employees in Johnson City,” said Mullican President Neil Poland. “The past year was extremely difficult for our nation’s economy, especially the building industry, so it’s rewarding to bring some positive news to our region and our industry as we wrap up 2009.”

Mullican noted it will kick off the company’s 25th anniversary in 2010 by adding 25 new jobs in the first quarter. An additional 50 jobs will be created over the next two years. In total, the local facility’s labor force is expected to grow more than 50 percent by 2012, the company said.

Additionally, a new production line, to be operational by March 1, will bolster the Johnson City site’s manufacturing capacity of solid prefinished flooring by 50 percent. (Mullican operates other production sites in Norton, Va.; Holland, N.Y.; and Ronceverte, W.Va.)

At a press conference today, Poland noted the new production line enables the company’s Johnson City plant to produce enough solid prefinished flooring, in less than two days, to cover the infield at NASCAR’s Bristol Motor Speedway. The expansion project is being partially funded through a Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) loan.

“TVA and other local service providers, such as the Johnson City Power Board, are glad to partner with area businesses so they stay and thrive in our community,” said John Bradley, TVA's senior vp economic development.

Green a key to growth strategy

Brian Greenwell, Mullican’s vp sales and marketing, said that although 2009 was difficult for the hardwood flooring industry, Mullican planned accordingly for the economic downturn. One of the company’s strategies was to focus on developing prefinished green flooring for the remodeling market.

“Our research indicated several years ago that there would be an increased demand for hardwood products that would bring sustainability to our forests,” Greenwell said. “Although hardwood floors are a naturally green product, we took things a step further by developing several new products that meet the strictest standards being mandated in the building industry.”

Recognized as one of the nation’s largest manufacturers of 3/4” solid hardwood flooring, the company launched its Green Haven line of prefinished floors earlier this year. Green Haven is certified 100 percent-PURE by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Hardwood floors that are 100 percent-PURE FSC-certified are made entirely of wood originating from FSC-certified forests. Mullican’s FSC-PURE products are available in prefinished solid domestic, engineered and exotic hardwood selections.