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  • Cecile Corral

Mohawk targets independents with exclusive rugs

Cecile Corral, Joan Gunin -- Home Textiles Today, December 10, 2001

On the strength of a sizable delivery system and supporting staff, Mohawk Home became positioned itself to present its area rug program last week to independent carpet retailers.

The program marks the first time Mohawk has created an area rug program exclusive to its independent carpet retailers, as well as independent furniture and gift retail customers.

"We feel like our independent retail partners have been underserved by Mohawk Home," said Pat Moyer, vp, marketing. "They generate a significant portion of our overall revenue for floor coverings, and they are ideal candidates for us to extend our home products, too."

Mohawk introduced the new collection of area rugs at its annual Floorscapes convention, which was held last week in Boca Raton, FL. Floorscapes is an umbrella network program comprising about 300 independent carpet retailers that work together to enhance relationships with their suppliers and manufacturers.

The new area rug collection is composed of rugs 2' x 3' through 8' x 11' and runners in 40 different patterns, including designs by license property and artist Thomas Kinkade, handmade wool rugs imported from India and China, and pieces from Mohawk's high-end woven rug collections. Price points range from less than $299 to $699.

With Mohawk's purchase of Goodwin Weavers last year, the company gained a fleet of sales representatives experienced in servicing strictly independent gift, floor covering and furniture dealers.

"These reps have the infrastructure to call upon the mom-and-pops of the world," Moyer said. "We feel that now, with their help, we can appropriately service these accounts. This is a program that allows us to utilize that sales force to its maximum potential."

Moyer added that other features supporting the new area rug program include the expansive trucking and delivery system the company already has in place.

As part of the new area rug program for Floorscapes members, Mohawk will provide in-store displays and installation networks, as well as credit programs. In-store fixtures come in two varieties: a 20-arm swing rack for 5' x 8' rugs and runners; and a 20-arm swing rack with capabilities to carry 40 rugs measuring 8' x 11'.

"Most of these dealers are missing an opportunity to be a player in one of the fastest growing segments of the floor covering industry," said Moyer. "Area rugs are growing at 8 percent to 10 percent annually, whereas carpets are growing at only 2 percent to 3 percent. You would hope these independent dealers experience additional growth through our area rug program. Plus, it's an easy cash-and-carry business because there is no installation or measuring required."

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