Tag Archive | "2017"

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Chemical Concepts to Feature New Products at Coverings 2017

Posted on 28 March 2017 by cradmin

Chemical Concepts has been in the countertop fabrication and kitchen remodeling business for more than 50 years, and this year at Coverings 2017, the company is featuring several new products, including Stonetac Activator, 6600 Rodmaster Quick-set Rodding Adhesive, 650UC Ultra Clear Epoxy and the Counterplate Plus 12-in. bracket.

The Rodmaster 6600 Quick-Set rodding compound is a toughened structural acrylic adhesive that sets up in 5 to 10 minutes and offers 5 times the strength compared to polyester adhesives. This convenient cartridge-based product is much faster to apply than traditional epoxies, saving time and labor while providing superior protection for delicate surfaces.

The new Counterplate Plus 12-in. bracket provides ultimate support for bartop overhangs, with no deflection even at high loads. These brackets offer the strength of 1/2-in.-thick steel without the weight, bulk or cost. They are also much easier to install than 1/2-in.-thick supports.

If you would like to see more or would like to sample, please see Chemical Concepts at Booth# 3298!


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ISFA Publishes 2017 Countertop Industry Outlook

Posted on 07 March 2017 by cradmin

In the first quarter of every year, the International Surface Fabricators Association (ISFA) publishes the annual Countertop Industry Outlook in its members’ magazine Countertops & Architectural Surfaces. ISFA Communications Director Kevin Cole conducts extensive research and analyzes a variety of statistics to predict the likely outlook for the countertop industry in the coming year and beyond, providing valuable data and indicators for fabricators and associated industry segments.

General Economic Factors

1One of the leading sets of statistics used in the 2017 Countertop Industry Outlook deals with the general economy, which determines the overall economic conditions that may lead to the construction of new homes and businesses and remodels for existing structures that require countertops.

The U.S. Congressional Budget Office reports that the gross domestic product (GDP) in 2016 increased by 1.6 percent, but this is a slight drop from the previous year when growth averaged 2 percent. However, economists believe the GDP will grow at 2.1 percent this year before falling back to 1.9 percent in 2018.

Another general economic factor to consider is unemployment. However, not all sources agree as to what to expect in 2017. The Federal Reserve believes unemployment will drop from 4.8 percent to 4.5 percent while a leading research firm, Trading Economics, says it will remain steady at 4.8 percent throughout the year.

The heated elections in 2016 cast a strong shadow of uncertainty on the construction industry, but according to Construction Outlook by construction consulting firm FMI, industry sentiment ranges from “cautiously optimistic” to “bullish.”

“Favorable general economic conditions, a high level of consumer confidence and the potential for tax reform and increased federal spending all promise to keep the industry on track for yet another productive year,” said Chris Daum, CEO of FMI.

Housing and Nonresidential Construction

Because the surfacing industry is closely related to the housing market, it only makes sense to look at overall growth in the previous year. As a whole, the housing market is far below its peak level in 2006, but it still managed to grow by 6 percent in 2016. However, while single-family home starts increased by 9 percent, multi-family starts fell by 1.2 percent. The regions that are dominating this trend are the South and West U.S.

It also looks like growth will remain positive for nonresidential construction, but it will fall short when compared to 2016. According to FMI, a few points to consider are as follows:

  • All segments of nonresidential construction, with the exception of healthcare, have increased for the past five years.
  • Lodging growth fell from 19 percent to 9 percent.
  • Office construction is expected to drop from 21 percent to 8 percent.
  • Internet sales shared online workspaces are causing commercial construction to fall from 21 percent to 8 percent.
  • Changes in healthcare policy will continue to hold back this segment.
  • Education construction will focus on green building, but less funding combined with increased enrollment will lead to additions and renovations rather than new buildings.

“Commercial construction activity is expected to increase in excess of 8 percent this year, which is slightly above the projection from mid-2016,” states the Consensus Construction Forecast from the American Institute of Architects (AIA).

Home Remodels

Leading economists also predict continued growth for remodels and home 2improvements, but once again, the specific amount of growth is a point of contention. The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) states that an undersupply of homes for sale and increasing household income will elevate the renovation, remodeling and repair segments to their highest levels since the recession.

Another source, the Houzz State of the Industry Study, predicts that residential renovations will rise by 8.5 percent even though pre-recession levels were passed in 2016 while the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University predicts home improvement spending to increase at a rate of 6.8 percent in 2017.

Kitchen Cabinets and Countertops

According to statistics in the Trend of Business Survey from the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association (KCMA), the outlook for kitchen cabinetry has slowed, but the industry remains optimistic.

3In 2016, growth slowed significantly over the previous year after five years of much higher rates. Lower-end stock cabinets fell from 12.3 percent to 4 percent, and fully custom cabinets fell from 13.6 percent to 1.3 percent. However, mid-priced semi-custom cabinets rose from 4.2 percent to 5.9 percent. Interestingly, it is this category that includes the vast majority of sustainably produced cabinets.

The outlook for countertops is spearheaded by the most recent “Countertops” study from The Freedonia Group, which makes market predictions extending out to 2024. According to this report, the demand for countertops as a whole will increase by 4.2 percent, an improvement of nearly 2 percent higher than the average growth between 2009 and 2014. The study also names the top five suppliers for the U.S. market in terms of square feet sold: Wilsonart, Formica, Panolam, DuPont and Cosentino.

Demand for countertops in the U.S. is expected to grow by 4.2 percent each year through 2019 when the market will hit 810 million square feet and $29.3 billion. By comparison, the growth rate for countertops only averaged 2.3 percent from 2009 to 2014.

When it comes to countertop materials, natural stone, laminate and solid surface all surrendered market share in 2015 to engineered stone, commonly known as quartz. Other materials, however, are holding steady with a 12.4 percent share. Other materials, which include concrete, metals and recycled materials, are also predicted to grow at a much higher rate from 2014 to 2019 than the named categories, listed here in order of market share:

  • Laminates – 3.4 percent
  • Natural stone – 5.3 percent
  • Solid surface – 4.3 percent
  • Engineered stone – 5.8 percent
  • Cast polymers – 3.6 percent
  • Tile – 2.6 percent
  • Other – 10.1 percent

A different picture is painted, however, when you take a look at the countertop market in terms of dollars. A study conducted by Catalina Research titled “2015 Natural and Manufactured Stone Product Industry Report” states that natural stone topped the market with a 43 percent share with laminates a distant second at only 18 percent. Quartz is listed a close third at 16 percent, and Solid Surface falls dead last at 10.3 percent.

ISFA predicts, all in all, that 2017 will be a “fair year for market but with less robust growth than 2016.”

Read the full 2017 Countertop Industry Outlook online.

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Coverings 2017 Announces Lineup of Appreciation Days

Posted on 06 March 2017 by cradmin

coverings-2017Coverings released the schedule of segment-focused Appreciation Days that provide enhanced learning and networking opportunities for builders, remodelers, architects, designers, contractors and fabricators. While programming for all groups will be held throughout the duration of Coverings, Appreciation Days are designed to feature tailored guided tours of the show floor, lunch, focused education sessions and more. Coverings 2017 will be held April 4-7 in Orlando, at the Orange County Convention Center.

Dates and programming highlights for the 2017 Appreciation Days are as follows:

Tuesday, April 4: Builder & Remodeler Day will kick off with a conference session at 8 a.m. entitled “Critical Changes to Industry Standards, Guidelines and Best Practices” led by Eric Astrachan, executive director of Tile Council of North America. At 11 a.m. the Builder & Remodeler tour of the exhibit floor, hosted by personalities Dean and Derek, will commence. Participants will see the latest in tile, stone and installation materials from around the world. After the tour, Dean and Derek will lead the roundtable discussion during lunch “Bringing the Indoors Out and Show Floor Trends” in the Appreciation Lounge.

Wednesday, April 5: Architect & Designer Day will feature several notable sessions including “Contract Magazine Presents: A Fireside Chat with John Czarnecki and Todd-Avery Lenahan” “Coastal Resilience – Rethinking Design for Extreme Weather Conditions,” and “Raise Your Profile: The Ins and Outs of Being a Brand Ambassador.” The first will feature Contract magazine’s editor in chief, John Czarnecki and industry leader Todd-Avery Lenahan in an intimate conversation about the business and power of design. The second session, presented by Architectural Record, will feature the magazine’s senior editor, Joann Gonchar, as well as architectural and urban designer, Ramiro Diaz, LEED AP. The third will feature three panelists discussing how they represent brands through publicity, social media and live events. Participants include founder and creative director of Kim Lewis Designs, Kim Lewis, blogger from Cozy Stylish Chic, Jeanne Chung and Blogger and NKBA Spokesperson, Patricia Davis Brown. Starting at 11 a.m., architects and designers will be invited to participate in the trends tour, led by Coverings’ Industry Ambassador, Alena Capra. Immediately following, at 12:15 p.m., attendees can join Alena for a roundtable discussion and lunch in the Appreciation Lounge.

Wednesday, April 5-Thursday, April 6: Contractor Days will span two days at the show. With many key sessions including “Introduction to Tile Industry Standards and How to Use Them to Your Advantage” and “How to Become a Certified Tile Installer.” Coverings has added four new contractor/installer session tracks: Contractor Advanced Business Topics; Contractor Beginner-Intermediate Topics; Thin-Tile Mini-Track; and En Español for Spanish-speaking attendees. The Contractor tour will take place on both Wednesday and Thursday at 11 a.m. followed by a luncheon in the Contractor Lounge. Happy hours with fun giveaways will be offered in the afternoon.

Friday April 7: Fabricator Day will commence with the session “Don’t Get Caught Doing What Worked Yesterday When Customers are Obsessed With What They Want Tomorrow” featuring James Dion, president and owner of Dionco Inc. This session will focus on what the new consumer’s expectations are and how to exceed them. The Fabricator Tour will begin at 11 a.m., highlighting new and innovative products from the marketplace. At noon, immediately following the tour, will be the Fabricator Luncheon and Roundtable discussion on building a culture and diversifying a business.

Learn more about the 2017 Appreciation Days, as well as the comprehensive conference program by clicking here.

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MIA+BSI Joins IBS and KBIS for Design & Construction Week 2017

Posted on 17 November 2016 by cradmin

mia bsi natural stone institute logoMIA+BSI: The Natural Stone Institute is a supporting organization of the fourth annual Design & Construction Week (DCW).

Founding partners, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and the National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) will continue driving the possibilities of home forward as the co-location of the NAHB International Builders’ Show® (IBS) and the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show® (KBIS) moves to Orlando, January 10-12, 2017. DCW will bring together more than 80,000 design and construction professionals in the largest gathering of the residential design and construction industry.

MIA+BSI members will enjoy discounted registration for the event, while the organization’s leaders will participate in the Design & Construction Week Executive Roundtable to discuss issues and trends in the US housing market and exchange ideas with other industry thought leaders.

“MIA+BSI is thrilled to be a DCW Supporting Organization. We look forward to the networking and education opportunities offered by this event. Our members will benefit greatly from attending Design & Construction Week,” said MIA President David Castellucci.

“We have seen explosive growth in Design & Construction Week over the past few years, primarily due the draw of having so many big industry players all in one place,” said NAHB CEO Jerry Howard. “The support of MIA+BSI only further bolsters the prominence of this event. DCW has become the premier event for our industry, and we expect the 2017 show to be the best year yet.”

“NKBA is thrilled about this collaboration, bringing so many industry representatives together in one location creates huge value for everyone involved,” said Bill Darcy, NKBA CEO. “This is ultimately a huge win for consumers, as we lead the way in connecting the industry.”

Show dates include:

  • NAHB International Builders’ Show: January 10-12, Orange County Convention Center
  • Kitchen & Bath Industry Show: January 10-12, Orange County Convention Center

Registration is open at designandconstructionweek.com—registered attendees will have access to both trade shows held during Design & Construction Week.

You may also be interested in viewing other upcoming trade shows on our Calendar of Events.

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