Q.E.P. Co., Inc. Announces the Acquisition of Halex Tackstrip and Wood Underlayment

Boca Raton, FL – April 26, 2017 – Q.E.P. Co., Inc. today announced it completed the acquisition of the Halex/GCPAT tackstrip and wood underlayment businesses and accompanying assets from GCP Applied Technologies (GCPAT). GCPAT is a leading, global supplier of flooring installation products to the DIY and professional markets and is a recognized industry leader in the production and distribution of tackstrip and wood underlayment.

Customers will now be able to obtain a full line of installation accessories directly from QEP. From adhesives, underlayment, carpet installation tools, vinyl installation tools, hardwood flooring nailers and nails, to now tackstrip and wood underlayment, QEP continues the legacy that began in 1938 when Roberts Consolidated Industries was formed. Now with an expanded product portfolio of over 30 new products in two new categories and the strength of the Roberts and Halex brands, our customers have a large assortment that is sure to fit their needs.

Adding to the already large operating footprint, QEP will add two locations to their array. Manufacturing and distribution points in California and Pennsylvania will ensure that products are shipped on time and efficiently to all locations across the USA.

“We are very pleased with the acquisition of these businesses. This is part of our continuing strategy to strengthen our breadth of product for the professional floorcovering installation market. Along with our already extensive range of Roberts® Installation Tools and Flooring Adhesives, these complementary products enhance our industry leading portfolio of floorcovering solutions,” said Jamie Clingan, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing, Q.E.P. Co., Inc.

Q.E.P. Co., Inc., founded in 1979, is a world class, worldwide provider of innovative, quality and value-driven flooring and industrial solutions. As a leading worldwide manufacturer, marketer and distributor QEP delivers a comprehensive line of hardwood and laminate flooring, flooring installation tools, adhesives and flooring related products targeted for the professional installer as well as the do-ityourselfer. In addition the company provides industrial tools with cutting edge technology to all of the industrial trades. Under brand names including QEP®, ROBERTS®, Capitol®, Harris®Wood, Fausfloor®, Homelux®, TileRite®, Nupla®, HISCO®, Ludell®, Vitrex®, Plasplugs®, PRCI®, Porta-Nails®, Tomecanic®, Bénètiere® and Elastiment®, the Company markets over 7,000 products. The Company sells its products to home improvement retail centers, specialty distribution outlets, municipalities and industrial solution providers in 50 states and throughout the world.

Crossville Announces 2016 Recycling Program Milestones

All-time Recycling Total Tops 91 Million Pounds of Fired Waste Diverted from Landfills

CROSSVILLE, Tenn. – Officials with domestic tile manufacturer Crossville Inc. have announced the company recycled 21,131,930 pounds of fired porcelain in 2016, bringing the company’s cumulative recycling total to just over 91 million pounds since the 2009 launch of the Tile Take-Back® program and subsequent TOTO USA recycling partnership.

These recycling initiatives are based on the company’s proprietary process for recycling fired porcelain products, including post-consumer materials. Through Tile Take-Back®, Crossville is able to recycle previously installed tile collected from its distribution network, as well as scraps that result from tile cutting during installation, sizing, or sample creation. Through its TOTO partnership, Crossville receives pre-consumer fired porcelain toilets that do not meet quality standards; prior to the partnership, these cast-offs were being sent to landfills for disposal, but now they are recycled for use in manufacturing new tile.

All 91 million-plus cumulative pounds of the recycled material Crossville has diverted from landfills have been or will be introduced into the tile production process. This use of recycled material during manufacturing results in Crossville maintaining its status as a net consumer of waste for a sixth consecutive year. Net waste consumption is achieved by using more waste than is created during production.

Here’s the break-out of Crossville’s total of 21,131,930 pounds of fired porcelain recycled in 2016.
* 13,285,116 pounds fired scrap product at the company’s plant (this amount continues to increase from previous years, as the average tile size produced at Crossville’s plants has increased)
* 7,759,400 pounds of TOTO’s scrap porcelain
* 87,414 pounds of post-consumer waste from the Tile Take-Back® program

Additionally in 2016, Crossville removed 3,107,192 pounds of filtrate solids from dirty water and recycled back into tile production. That’s 1.4 million more pounds than were removed in 2015.

Tile Take-Back® and the TOTO USA partnership are just two of many sustainable practices Crossville maintains companywide. For more information about all of Crossville’s sustainability practices, visit crossvilleinc.com/sustainability.

About Crossville’s Recycling Initiatives
Tile Take-Back Program®
The Tile Take-Back® program is Crossville’s answer to the major environmental problem facing the tile industry today: the recycling of fired tile. Because this program is so beneficial throughout the industry, Crossville openly accepts post-consumer tile from other brands as well as projects not originating from Crossville.

TOTO USA Partnership
In 2011, Crossville launched a partnership with sanitaryware manufacturer TOTO USA to receive and recycle that company’s fired porcelain refuse. Today, there is recycled content in every square foot of porcelain tile produced by Crossville because of the harvested material from TOTO, reducing the need for raw materials for tile production.

Q.E.P. Co., Inc. Announces the Acquisition of AC Products Co.

Boca Raton, FL – April 18, 2017 – Q.E.P. Co., Inc. today announced it completed the acquisition of AC Products Co. of Apple Creek, Ohio, a prime manufacturer of ceramic bathroom accessories.

AC Products is one of the premier American manufacturers creating handcrafted bathroom accessories such as soap dishes, shower shelves, towel bars and other related items. Computer controlled color matching ensures precision and allows the company to offer pieces matched to the colors offered by many tile manufacturers. In addition, versatile mountings are designed for varying installation methods always with the end user in mind.

“All of the products are manufactured in America, with American materials and labor. We look forward to
adding the AC Products line to our ever-expanding portfolio of products”, said Jamie Clingan, Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing, Q.E.P. Co., Inc.

Crossville’s Tim Bolby Receives Service to the Industry Award

Tim Bolby, director of technical services for Crossville, with eric Astrachan, TCNA Executive Director.

Tim Bolby, executive director of technical services for Crossville, received the inaugural Service to the Industry Award presented by the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) at Coverings 2017. Bolby is the first recipient of the newly established honor and was recognized at a surprise reception.

“Tim has been instrumental in advancing the tile industry’s technical standards that now guide the sustainable practices and quality of products produced by manufacturers of tile and setting materials,” said Mark Shannon, executive vice president of sales for Crossville. “He’s also played a leading role in our industry’s installation methods and contractor training.”
Bolby joined Crossville in 2002 as director of technical services and was promoted to executive director in 2013. He has served as the technical and quality management leader for the manufacturer where he was responsible for the review and approval of all significant product claims, the strategic planning for all product knowledge training initiatives, and the review of technical and installation publications. Bolby has more than 25 years’ experience in the business and is a graduate of the University of Missouri.
For more information, visit crossvilleinc.com.

Florida Tile named CTDA Supplier of the Year

(l to r.) Michael Franceschelli and Luca Setti

Lexington, KY: April 4, 2017 Florida Tile has been named Supplier of the Year by the Ceramic Tile Distributors Association (CTDA). The award was announced on the opening day of the Coverings 2017 show held in Orlando, Florida.

Accepting the award for Florida Tile were Michael Franceschelli, CEO and Luca Setti, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer. “We are truly elated to win this prestigious award for the second time. It is a testimony to the service culture we have built at Florida Tile,” said Franceschelli. “Thank you to the CTDA membership. We appreciate that the voting members see value in the effort we make. We also want to give sincere thanks to our entire Florida Tile team, who deserve the accolades”.

Florida Tile previously won the inaugural Supplier of the Year Award in 2013 and is the only two-time recipient.

The CTDA Supplier of the Year is selected based on results of blind balloting by CTDA members who named their top suppliers and ranked them in terms of leadership, marketing, training, technology, regulatory compliance, communication, policies, product shipment and support services.

New State-of-the-Art Tile Manufacturing Plant Opens in Lebanon

AWP Ceremony Commissioner Bob Rolfe

Lebanon, TN (April 11, 2017) – Commissioner Bob Rolfe, of the TN Department of Economic and Community Development, Mayor Bernie Ash, of the City of Lebanon and Michael Kephart, President, of Wonder Porcelain LLC, were among those on hand to ceremonially open the new American Wonder Porcelain plant today, Tuesday, April 11th in Lebanon, TN. The future onsite showroom in the state-of-the-art manufacturing complex hosted the group of approximately 100 guests consisting of local officials, plant employees and foreign investors.

Michael Kephart, President of Wonder Porcelain LLC, began the event by thanking the State of TN, Governor Bill Haslam (not in attendance), Mayor Bernie Ash as well as the Joint Economic and Community Development Board of Wilson County, who had several representatives at the event.

AWP Ceremony Jianping Huang and Commissioner Bob Rolfe

Commissioner Bob Rolfe spoke next, focusing on the job opportunities, 200+ positions, the new facility will bring to the area.

Jianping Huang, a primary investor in Wonder Porcelain LLC, then spoke briefly about the importance of the new plant and the excitement surrounding today’s opening. Bill Griese, Director of Standards Development and Sustainability Initiatives for the Tile Council of North America, TCNA, was on hand to speak to the continued growth of the tile industry in the US and the importance of manufacturing on US soil.

The event concluded with a ribbon cutting by Commissioner Bob Rolfe, Michael Kephart and Jianping Huang.

AWP Ceremony

The 500,000-square foot plant will be fully operational in June and will allow Wonder Porcelain LLC to introduce advanced manufacturing capabilities and proprietary production processes, not previously utilized in domestic tile production. The facility will put Lebanon, TN, on the map as an area for innovation in the tile industry. It will have the capability to produce glazed porcelain, technical color body, rectified, polished, and large format tile. All equipment in the plant reflects the latest technology.

Wonder Porcelain LLC worked with TN-based T.W.Frierson Contractor, Inc. on the construction of the plant. An additional 200,000 square foot warehouse and adjacent office complex complete the facility.

AWP Ceremony Mayor Ash and Local Officials

Wonder Porcelain, comprised of tile veterans from leading organizations in the industry, will use their vision for manufacturing, marketing and selling tile to introduce exceptionally designed and technically superior products to the US market.

All products produced in the new plant will be certified by the Porcelain Tile Certification Agency and will be tested by the Tile Council of North America to ensure they meet or exceed defined standards in all performance categories.

About Wonder Porcelain, LLC

Wonder Porcelain Group, LLC, is an American company with international roots and is the U.S. division of one of the largest and most financially stable tile companies in the world. Wonder Porcelain is committed to the future of the tile industry in the United States and believes future growth depends upon increasing domestic manufacturing, adopting new techniques and continued research and development.

Total Solutions Plus: Registration Now Open

Each year, Total Solutions Plus brings the ceramic tile industry together to network and learn from each other…Join us for our 8th Year!

In 2017, Total Solutions Plus will be held November 4 – 7 at the Marriott Washington Wardman Park in Washington, DC. TSP will kick off with a special opening reception on Sunday night, followed by Thom Singer, the opening Keynote providing an interactive Conference Catalyst presentation. The exciting breakouts include topics like the Art of Negotiation, Sales Techniques from reading customer’s faces, and more! Additionally, there are many opportunities for discussions at roundtables and forums throughout the conference.

Register for TSP Today!

Table Tops

Table Top registration is open! Last Year, the table tops sold out, so secure yours today! The session takes place on Monday, November 6 from 4:30 pm-7:30 pm. The cost per table top is only $1,800 and includes one complimentary full-conference registration.

Sponsorship Opportunities

Both exclusive and package sponsorship opportunities are now available. Sponsorships allow your brand to reach key decision makers with a variety of marketing opportunities. There are many different levels of sponsorships available, each with different benefits. Click here for the Sponsorship Form.

For complete details regarding Total Solutions Plus 2017, including Education, Activities, Table Tops, Sponsorship opportunities, and more, please visit https://www.ctdahome.org/tsp/2017/index.shtml.

If you have any questions, please contact CTDA at 630-545-9415 or [email protected].

Texas Motor Speedway Takes The Checkered Flag With First-of-its-Kind High Performance Race Car Garage Floor Concrete Coatings

LATICRETE® SPARTACOTE™ System boasts improved durability over epoxy, along with custom-branded designs, on the demanding, high-performance race car garage floors

April 12, 2017, Bethany, Conn. – LATICRETE® SPARTACOTE™, the “Official Garage Flooring System of Texas Motor Speedway,” has completed the final phase of installation of customized, high-performance concrete floor coatings in the speedway’s north and south race car garages — the first floor of its kind at any NASCAR track. The 22,000-square foot SPARTACOTE floor boasts multiple large-scale Texas Motor Speedway logos and a metallic cobalt blue coat where the race teams perform service and inspections. Intertech Flooring, the expert SPARTACOTE installer on the project, applied a similar custom concrete coating of the same size in the track’s north garages in October.

“The garage floors at Texas Motor Speedway showcase the benefits of the SPARTACOTE system in a dramatic way, including an energizing, fully-customized design with the Speedway’s colors and branding prominently featured on the high-traction, non-slip surface, as well as better chemical resistance and long-term durability over traditional epoxy floors,” said Douglas Metchick, President of LATICRETE SUPERCAP®.

The SPARTACOTE system can be professionally installed in residential, commercial and industrial applications, including airplane hangars and warehouses. Designed to withstand aircraft hydraulic grade oils, such as Skydrol, SPARTACOTE coatings are resistant to other common garage chemicals and three times more abrasion resistant than traditional epoxy.

“With these floors, Texas Motor Speedway has once again raised the bar for NASCAR racetracks. Not only do they convey our image as a first-class facility for our professional racing, they also provide a safe, high-traction floor for the race teams and NASCAR inspectors. With more than 40 high-performance cars being worked on at any given time on race days, our garage floors need to be able to withstand hot tires, hazardous fluids and the regular use of heavy equipment — and LATICRETE delivered exactly that,” said Mat Stolley, Vice President of Operations for Texas Motor Speedway.


LATICRETE is a leading manufacturer of globally proven construction solutions for the building industry. LATICRETE offers a broad range of products and systems covering tile & stone installation and care, masonry installation and care, resinous and decorative floor finishes, concrete construction chemicals, and concrete restoration and care including the LATICRETE® SUPERCAP® System. For over 60 years, LATICRETE has been committed to research and development of innovative installation products, building a reputation for superior quality, performance and customer service. LATICRETE methods, materials, and technology have been field and laboratory proven by Architects, Engineers, Contractors and Owners. Offering an array of low VOC and sustainable products, LATICRETE products contribute to LEED certification, exceed commercial/residential VOC building requirements, and are backed by the most comprehensive warranties in the industry. For more information, visit laticrete.com.

TCNA Lab Services Provides Technical Support for Gauged Porcelain Standards Development; Work Is the Latest Contribution to Worldwide Tile Standards

(Anderson, SC) —  When ANSI A137.3-2017 and A-108.19-2017 were approved recently, their 32 cumulative pages represented many hours of work on behalf of “thin tile” advocates across the globe. The science behind the standards, meanwhile, was provided by a tightly knit group based out of Anderson, South Carolina, who logged approximately 4,000 hours over six months to make the standard a reality.

“While a number of folks in the industry were absolutely critical in spearheading the thin tile project, and in keeping it moving forward at an incredibly rapid pace, there’s no question our lab played a decisive role in its eventual composition,” says Eric Astrachan, Executive Director, Tile Council of North America (TCNA). “In fact, our lab plays an integral role in the development of many of this industry’s standards —  thin tile is just the latest example. We couldn’t develop consensus as we do today without the lab leading the way through their R&D efforts. We’re very proud of the work they do.”

“Standards development is a challenging and interesting cross-disciplinary project for our staff,” says Director of Laboratory Services Claudio Bizzaglia. “We have a standards team that attacks each particular standards project we work on, and then, depending on the nature of the project, we pull in specific additional staff members, depending on their specialties. The standards we’ve worked on recently or we’re working on now include a new surface abrasion method for ceramic tiles, multiple water absorption methods, various aspects of the glass tile standard, ongoing coefficient of friction studies, and the Robinson floor test method.”

“Having a diverse talent base to pull from here at TCNA is a tremendous asset in standards development and other industry-facing projects, just as it is for customer assignments,” Astrachan says. “With standards, the team has the additional benefit of knowing that they’re contributing something to an industry that we care very much about —  and then, of course, it’s nice to have that expertise when it comes to helping our customers should a standard be ratified.”

About ANSI
As the voice of the U.S. standards and conformity assessment system, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) empowers its members and constituents to strengthen the U.S. marketplace position in the global economy while helping to assure the safety and health of consumers and the protection of the environment.

The Institute oversees the creation, promulgation and use of thousands of norms and guidelines that directly impact businesses in nearly every sector: from acoustical devices to construction equipment, from dairy and livestock production to energy distribution, and many more. ANSI is also actively engaged in accreditation – assessing the competence of organizations determining conformance to standards.

About TCNA
TCNA is a trade association representing manufacturers of ceramic tile, tile installation materials, tile equipment, raw materials, and other tile-related products. Established in 1945 as the Tile Council of America (TCA), it became TCNA in 2003, reflecting its membership expansion to encompass all of North America.

Tile Council is recognized for its leadership role in facilitating the development of North American and international industry quality standards to benefit tile consumers. Additionally, TCNA regularly conducts independent research and product testing, works with regulatory, trade, and other government agencies, offers professional training, and publishes industry consensus guidelines and standards, economic reports, and promotional literature.

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