Archive | November, 2018

Next Round of Duties and Tariffs Announced on Chinese Quartz

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Next Round of Duties and Tariffs Announced on Chinese Quartz

Posted on 28 November 2018 by cradmin

Published November 20, the department of commerce made a preliminary determination that certain quartz surface products from  China are being sold in the United States at less than fair value, or dumped, and preliminary duties range from a minimum of 242.1 percent  on Suzhou Colorquartzstone New Material Co., Ltd. and Shanhai Meiyang Stone Co. Ltd., CQ International Ltd. to a maximum of 341.29 percent for “China-Wide” entities.

Click Here to read the Federal Register Notice for the Anti-dumping duties.

The new tariff is the second such fee placed on Chinese quartz imports after Cambria, a Minnesota-based manufacturer, filed a petition in April.

Assuming they stand with preliminary numbers, the final duty for this segment of the tariffs could be imposed as early as May of 2019.

Furthermore, these anti-dumping duties will be retroactively levied against any quartz from China that arrived up to 90 days before the Register publication if they are unliquidated. That means products arriving as far back as August could be hit by these fees, depending on the sales cycle, which can run as long as 300 days after the goods are imported.

These fees are in addition to preliminary countervailing duties that were also found to be warranted on September 21, with most Chinese quartz surfaces facing a 34.38 percent tariff, but a couple (namely Fasa Industrial Corp. Ltd. and Foshan Hero Stone Col. Ltd.) were pegged at a subsidy rate of 178.45 percent.

These countervailing duties must be affirmed by January 19.

Click Here to read the Federal Register Notice for the Countervailing Duties.

Additionally, the Trump administration initiated a 10 percent 301 Tariff against quartz surfacing (along with several other related products, machinery and equipment) which are set to rise to 25 percent on January 1, 2019.

So, if the anti-dumping duties, countervailing duties and tariffs all stand as preliminarily set, as early as May, the effective fee rate increases will range from a minimum of 301.48 percent to a maximum of more than 500 percent.

While no one is quite sure exactly how this will affect the American market for quartz surfacing, one research expert at Freedonia Research believes increased costs could very well curb the demand for the material. Other manufacturing companies have said they believe this could also lead to shortages in material.

Certainly demand is likely to increase for those companies manufacturing or importing quartz in countries other than China, although in the long run other lower labor cost markets, such as India or Vietnam, may have an opportunity to ramp up production and bring in lower-cost alternatives. However, it is likely to take awhile for capacity in those areas can be ramped up to meet demand.

Several fabricators we have spoken with have suggested that consumers, designers and architects may be driven to alternative products, such as granite, solid surface or emerging product categories, such as sintered compact surfaces.

Click here to read Cambria’s take on the latest duties on Chinese quartz imports.

Time will tell how this all plays out, but for now there are plenty of opinions ranging across the spectrum.

You may also be interested in these articles on the lead up to these duties/tariffs – preliminary article on Chinese quartz duties/tariffs; secondary article on Chinese quartz duties/tariffs; third article on Chinese quartz duties/tariffs.

We would love to hear your opinions and feedback on this subject. You can post in the comment section here or email us at [email protected].

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Karran Introduces Apron Front Quartz Sinks

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Karran Introduces Apron Front Quartz Sinks

Posted on 27 November 2018 by cradmin

Karran has introduced two new quartz Apron Front sink options. The sinks are made from ultra durable quartz composite and are tough yet classical and elegant in their styling.

The QA-750 apron front sink (shown on left) is a farmhouse double equal bowl model with a 9-1/4-in. deep apron. It requires a new apron front sink base cabinet for installation. It’s a great sink option for new kitchen installations.

The QAR-750 (shown on right) is the perfect choice when existing cabinetry is being retained. With its shorter, 6-1/2-in. deep apron, this sink will fit into most existing 36-in. or wider standard sink bases. Typically all you will need to do is remove the false drawer fronts and make some minor cuts to the cabinet face frame.

According to the company, the aprons on both models are designed so that installation cuts are hidden behind the apron, making it simple and quick to install.

Six color options are available – Black, Brown, Concrete, Grey, Bisque and White.

You may also be interested in this article about Blanco’s Precision Farmhouse Sink.

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Health & Safety Watch: OSHA Releases Top 10 Violations

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Health & Safety Watch: OSHA Releases Top 10 Violations

Posted on 26 November 2018 by cradmin

OSHA has released preliminary data noting the Top 10 Most Cited Violations. The data for the year is only preliminary, covering violations through September 30, 2018. While these violations cover every industry, they also remain common in countertop fabrication shops and can be avoided or abated relatively easily.

10. Personal Protective and Lifesaving Equipment: Eye and Face Protection (1926.102) – 1,536 violations

9. Machine Guarding (1910.212) – 1,972 violations

8. Fall Protection: Training Requirements (1926.503) – 1,982 violations

7. Powered Industrial Trucks (1910.178) – 2,294 violations

6. Ladders (1926.1053) – 2,812 violations

5. Lockout/Tagout (1910.147) – 2,944 violations

4. Respiratory Protection (1910.134) – 3,118 violations

3. Scaffolds: General Requirements (1926.451) – 3,336 violations

2. Hazard Communication (1910.1200) – 4,552 violations

1. Fall Protection: General Requirements (1926.501) – 7,270 violations

For more in-depth coverage of the top 10 violations for 2018, please read the feature in the December 2018 issue of Safety+Health, the official magazine of the National Safety Council (NSC) Congress & Expo.

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Porcelanosa Opens New Showroom

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Porcelanosa Opens New Showroom

Posted on 23 November 2018 by cradmin

PORCELANOSA, a global leader in the innovation, design, manufacturing and distribution of luxury tile, kitchen and bath products, has opened a new showroom in Chestnut Hill, Mass. The brand new showroom located six miles west of Boston, in Chestnut Hill, Mass, has a 5,200 sq. ft., exhibition space, showcasing three full-size kitchen displays and 35 full lifestyle bathroom vignettes, all featuring some of PORCELANOSA’s top products.

The new PORCELANOSA showroom is located on Boylston St. in Chestnut Hill, Mass. and is Massachusetts’ 2nd showroom to open. The new space is a great addition to the existing showroom located at Boston Design Center in Boston. A grand opening party took place on Wednesday, October 17th and was attended by PORCELANOSA clients, local media, bloggers, and influencers.

In the new showroom, customers and industry professionals alike can meet with dedicated in-store Design Consultants to select products and take home free tile samples for residential renovation projects. Industry professionals including architects, developers and builders can also schedule meetings with personal Architectural & Design Sales representatives that work on larger commercial projects. The showroom has kitchen and bathroom displays, and an extensive tile library with hundreds of tiles to choose from.

The showroom is also part of “The Street,” which is one of the region’s most delightful destinations for shops, eateries, entertainment and culture. Both a leader in national retail trends and a cornerstone within its Chestnut Hill community, The Street enchants its visitors with a collection of 40 unrivaled brands, as well as lively events by way of art, live music, fitness and kid-friendly fun.
PORCELANOSA currently has 30 showrooms in the United States, including newly opened showrooms in the Miami Design District and San Diego, Calif. The company is slated to open another showroom in Toronto, ON, Canada.

You may also be interested in this article about new products from Lunada Bay.

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Oneida Air Systems Relaunches Website

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Oneida Air Systems Relaunches Website

Posted on 21 November 2018 by cradmin

Oneida Air Systems, a company that is dedicated to the innovative design of high quality dust collection systems that help create a safe, healthy, and practical workplace environment, has relaunched it website at oneida-air.com. The new mobile-friendly site includes features such as the ability to compare products side by side, create and share a wishlist, flip through the virtual catalog, and much more.

You may also be interested in this article: OSHA Seeks Input on Silica Control Measures

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Video: Design Basics of Compact Sintered Surface

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Video: Design Basics of Compact Sintered Surface

Posted on 20 November 2018 by cradmin

This video, about design basics of compact sintered surfacing , was put online by HG Stones, a distributor of natural stone, compact sintered surfacing, quartz surface and recycled glass conglomerate slabs.

The video itself, is part of ISFA’s Continuing Education program for architects and designers.

This video covers the important aspects of sintered compact surface materials including characteristics, features and benefits, performance properties, uses and design examples.

You may also be interested in this video about how Dekton Compact Sintered Surface is made.

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Coverings Seeks Submissions for CID Awards and Rock Star Nominations

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Coverings Seeks Submissions for CID Awards and Rock Star Nominations

Posted on 19 November 2018 by cradmin

Coverings (www.coverings.com), the largest international tile & stone show in North America, is accepting submissions for both the 2019 Coverings Installation and Design (CID) Awards and 2019 Rock Stars Awards. Both programs honor the best and brightest within tile and stone, underscoring Coverings’ mission to support the growth and success of the industry.

Coverings Installation and Design Awards
The CID Awards recognize outstanding design and installation in residential and commercial tile and stone projects. Architects, designers, builders, contractors, distributors, retailers, installers and other professionals are eligible to submit through the Coverings online portal before 5:00 p.m. EST on Monday December 17, 2018. The 2019 submission categories include tile installation, tile design, stone installation and stone design for both residential and commercial projects. It’s free to enter, and multiple entries are encouraged.

Projects are evaluated by an independent panel of judges based on their levels of creativity, craftsmanship and use of materials, and must have been completed within the past two years. A grand prize of $3,000 will be awarded to the most outstanding project, which showcases excellence in both design and installation. Eight category winners will each receive a prize of $2,000. All winners will receive a one-night stay in Orlando to attend Coverings 2019 and will have their work featured on display at the show.

Rock Stars Awards
Now entering its fifth year, Coverings’ Rock Stars Awards has recognized dozens of emerging industry leaders and is now accepting submissions for 2019. All candidates must be nominated by a colleague within the industry. Eligible nominees must be 35 or younger and employed within one of the following professions: architect, designer, distributor, retailer, contractor/installer, fabricator, specifier, trade association, or manufacturer. All nominations must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. EST Monday, December 17. Rock Stars submission forms and full criteria can be found here.

Rock Stars candidates are reviewed by a committee of industry leaders and selected honorees will be celebrated at the annual Coverings Rock Stars Awards Luncheon. Further accolades for 2019 Rock Stars include a free one-night hotel stay in Orlando, inclusion in Coverings press releases, a special Rock Star badge ribbon and a year-long feature on the Coverings website.

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Federal Brace Announces Return of Stainless Steel Island Countertops

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Federal Brace Announces Return of Stainless Steel Island Countertops

Posted on 16 November 2018 by cradmin

Federal Brace announced the return of Stainless Steel Island Countertops to its product line. Federal Brace customers can now quickly achieve the chef’s kitchen look with this beautiful, sleek, & outstanding quality prep surface in the standard island size of 50” x 26” x 1.5”. Custom Stainless Steel Countertop sizes are also now available.

Once primarily found only in restaurants & commercial kitchens, stainless steel is rapidly gaining popularity in residential applications for homeowners who have similar (albeit on a smaller-scale) needs: a durable, stain-resistant, non-porous, & heat-tolerant surface – with a contemporary, modern flair.

There is no need to fear food coloring, oils, beets, acids, wine or grape juice any longer. Stainless steel is the perfect surface for households with young children (or those young at heart). When accidents happen, put worries aside because clean up is fast & easy.

You may also be interested in this video about fabricating a stainless steel countertop

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Caestarstone Falls Flat, Expects Growth in 2019

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Caestarstone Falls Flat, Expects Growth in 2019

Posted on 15 November 2018 by cradmin

Caestarstone just released the company’s financial statements for the third quarter of 2018, revealing that the period and the entire year has virtually fallen flat. However, Caesarstone is now looking to the future and expecting higher than average revenue, especially in the U.S. where Chinese quartz has been hit by antidumping duties.

Caesarstone’s revenue for the third quarter of 2018 was $147.7 million, which is a slide of 4.5 percent compared to last year. Using a constant currency scale, revenue was down by 1.9 percent, but remained stable in the U.S. with increases in Canada and Europe. Slower growth remained in Australia, Israel and the Rest of the World.

Gross margin also fell from 32.1 percent to 29.6 percent from the previous year, but this was expected because of the foreign exchange, increased complexity of products and “other manufacturing challenges,” logistics inefficiency and high raw materials costs. However, many of these factors were partially offset by the stellar manufacturing performance at the U.S. facility.

Along with revenue, operating expenses also fell from $38.7 million to $29.7 million, which is 20.3 percent of revenue.

Total operating income for the third quarter was $14 million, providing a margin of 9.5 percent. In the same quarter last year, operating income was only $11 million with a margin of 7.1 percent.

The dividend for stockholders in the third quarter was $0.15 per share.

“Our third quarter and year-to-date results do not reflect the significant potential of Caesarstone’s global market leading position and innovative product offering,” commented Yuval Dagim, CEO of Caesarstone. “We are taking steps to create a more seamless global operating model and bring the right talent to our organization at all levels. We are working to enhance our go-to-market approach by streamlining processes, time to market and decision-making processes. These factors, along with our deeper emphasis on health, safety and discipline, are critical to the ongoing evolution of our Company’s culture. Moving into 2019, we expect to better capitalize on market opportunities as we implement a steady stream of best practices and refine our strategy.”

“We delivered better than expected third quarter gross margin and Adjusted EBITDA despite lower than expected revenue. Third quarter revenues were mainly impacted by currency headwinds and challenging market conditions, which we expect to continue into the fourth quarter,” added Ophir Yakovian, CFO of Caesarstone. “While we are encouraged by the long-term benefit of recent preliminary tariffs on U.S. imports of quartz countertops from China, we are cautious on the near-term impact of the tariff given a surge in 2018 pre-buy activity that may keep U.S. inventory levels temporarily elevated, along with the undetermined effect on supply outside the U.S. Therefore, we are moderating our expectations for the full year 2018 and focusing on a range of improvements to better position our Company for success in 2019.”

Outlook

Caesarstone expects 2018 revenue to fall in the range of $572 million to $578 million and states that this is because of an adverse foreign exchange market, soft market conditions and a more competitive environment.

Although the antidumping duties on Chinese quartz just began, Caesarstone expects a sizable long-term benefit for the company.

“We are encouraged by the long-term benefit of recent tariffs on U.S. imports of quartz countertops from China,” Yakovian said. “We anticipate a positive impact on our U.S. results in coming years.”

“In the near term, we are cautious, given there has been a surge in 2018 pre-buy activity ahead of the tariff,” Yakovian added. “That pre-buy will likely keep U.S. inventory levels elevated for the near term. Beyond that, we are watching closely to assess the collateral impact to International markets as Chinese producers seek to ship their product to other developed markets.”

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2019 Greenbuild Education Committees Call for Expressions of Interest

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2019 Greenbuild Education Committees Call for Expressions of Interest

Posted on 14 November 2018 by cradmin

USGBC is currently seeking professionals who are passionate, inventive and knowledgeable in the design, construction and operations of sustainable buildings and communities to serve on the Greenbuild 2019 Education Events Committee, Program Working Group and Special Programs Working Group. Greenbuild 2019 will take place in Atlanta, Georgia, from November 20 to 22, 2019.

Applications are due by Tues., November 27 at 5 p.m. EST.

Interested in being a part of Greenbuild? There are numerous committees and working groups that you can join:

  • The Greenbuild Education Events Committee (EEC) oversees the development of all Greenbuild educational platform opportunities, including events, conferences and summits promoting the adoption of green design, building and operations practices.
  • The Greenbuild Program Working Group (PWG) plays an active role in the development and delivery of educational programming intended to meet the needs of attendees to the annual Greenbuild International Conference and Expo.
  • The Greenbuild Special Programs Working Group (SPWG) oversees the development and delivery of innovative educational programs, formats and conference features. This group is charged with the continued evolution of the Greenbuild brand and ensuring cutting-edge conference offerings.

There’s never been a better time to get involved—submit your self-nomination and expand upon your professional background. All committee terms begin in January 2019.

You may also be interested in this article about the Cosentino Design Challenge.

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