With an exhibitor lineup comprising a veritable “who’s who” of the commercial flooring industry – names like Mohawk; Mannington Commercial; Bentley Prince Street; J+J/Invision; Interface; Tandus; American Biltrite; Shaw Contract; Milliken and Patcraft, just to name a few – NeoCon presents a unique opportunity to view the latest – as well as a lot of “not yet to market” – products and materials on the cutting edge of design and innovation.

“The range of categories represented here is really by design,” Mark Falanga, president of Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc., said. “When NeoCon first started it was really an office furniture show. Over the years the show has evolved as a function of the design community; they do a lot of work for a lot of different commercial environments, and when they specify, they don’t just specify furniture, they specify everything in that entire interior envelope, from ceiling tiles to fabrics to floor coverings.”

MMPI is the world’s leading owner and operator of showroom buildings and trade show facilities, bringing buyers and sellers together in more than 300 market events, trade and consumer shows and conferences each year.

“The effort toward diversification was really started in earnest with the floor covering industry,” Falanga said. “Floor coverings was far and away the number one category the design community told us they wanted to see here. For every project they’re involved with, floor covering is a component. So it was about 18 years ago when we began selectively targeting the industry, manufacturer by manufacturer, to get them involved, to get them to participate with us.”

The past two decades have seen tremendous leaps in design and technological innovation and talent in the floor covering category, Falanga said, including the area of sustainability.

“They’ve taken a great leadership role in the sustainability movement, and have got the entire industry outside of the floor covering category focused on this issue in a very meaningful manner, such that pretty much every manufacturer participating in NeoCon has a sustainability story to tell. And it’s the floor covering category that really sparked that awareness,” he said.

NeoCon 2013 will be held at the Merchandise Mart June 10-12. For more information go to www.neocon.com