In 2017, the U.S. ceramic tile market for flooring and wall installations was valued at $3.6 billion, representing 14.2% of the flooring market value with a growth year-over-year of 6.8%, according to Floor Covering Weekly (7/23/2018).
With increasing competition on a global scale, it can be challenging to position both new and existing products for ever-growing market share and, more importantly, to diversify into new markets that provide a hedge against economic fluctuations. Following are two major lessons our clients have learned that may benefit other suppliers.
In internal combustion (IC) engines, epoxy, silicone and UV/visible light-curing formulations offer enhanced capabilities and speed productivity to meet OEM and tier suppliers’ requirements. Significant innovations in gasketing, impregnation compounds, and bonding and potting can improve overall performance for automotive assembly applications.
Broadly speaking, a market disruptor may include a technology, method, process, service, or channel with superior performance and customer benefits delivered at an attractive price point that can unexpectedly displace an incumbent. Porter’s Five Forces, created by Harvard Business School’s then-associate professor Michael E. Porter, Ph.D., has provided a framework for taking a “snapshot in time” of any potential threat to a business’ profits (not limited to a business losing its customers to an existing rival.
When I began my career in the chemical industry, my company’s initiatives impressed and intrigued me. The leadership would lay out our direction and focus, as well as the metrics by which we would measure success in the coming year. Eventually, I came to understand that, even with the push to improve profitability through various company initiatives, it makes good business sense to not lose sight of the measurable basics.
Adhesive selectors, whether published guides or human, typically begin with determining which adhesive product or products will adhere to the substrate. That approach is necessary for repair applications, and may even be necessary for fixing a production issue on-the-fly. Engineers working in assembly need to consider the functionality of the device first. Adjusting substrate materials, processes, or joint designs may also be considered, but not automatically required. Next, testing to verify performance is necessary—and strongly recommended.
Our industry has seen an unprecedented increase in moisture-related claims due to many factors associated with a wider selection of floor coverings in use. These factors range from fast-track building construction and the increased use of non-standard size flooring tiles and planks to a reduction in porous floor-covering backings, as well as improperly specified and applied adhesives, improperly trained installers and poor drainage.
After years of modest growth in the adoption of green/sustainability programs, major corporations, along with their suppliers and logistics partners, have committed to sustainability and social responsibility goals.
The ChemQuest Group estimates the global adhesive and sealant industry to be approximately $53 billion at the end of 2015, comprised of $46.3 million in adhesives and $6.5 billion in sealants. This figure represents an increase of 3.5% in 2015.