Integrated Mart floors mean increased business for all
Thomas Lester -- Furniture Today, July 29, 2013
ATLANTA - As floors inside Merchandise Mart at the Atlanta International Gift & Home and International Area Rug markets continue to integrate, the hope is the intermingling of home furnishings and rug showrooms will increase business for all.
Rug companies are starting to feel the effects.
"We've been having a great show," said Andrew Shabtai, vice president of The Rug Market America, which has a showroom on the 12th floor, typically reserved for home accents and furnishings. "Attendance is up and people are more enthusiastic as they're coming into the showroom."
at the Atlanta
|Hand-knotted in India of wool and bamboo silk, the Chantelle
Collection of flatweave rugs from Kas debuted at the Atlanta
International Area Rug Market.|
Another rug company on a floor not normally used by rug companies was Surya, which relocated to the 11th floor in January.
Kurt Von De Bur, vice president of sales/national accounts for Surya, said he had one of the most productive summer Atlanta markets he could remember.
"It's been very well attended. On the mass merchant side, all the appointments showed up," Von De Bur said. "Buyers seem to be buying, looking at spring and summer of next year. We're very encouraged."
He said wool flat weaves by Jill Rosenwald and lattice designs were among the most popular items.
"We've got four racks full of flatweaves and they were always the busiest racks," he said.
Cyrus Loloi, principal of Loloi, said Atlanta is becoming more of an appointment- based show, but he said the significant buyers at the market are what make it a must-attend.
|From Kaleen, the
|The Nyla Collection from Loloi
was among the company’s new
introductions in Atlanta.|
"That makes it worth it to come to this market," Loloi said.
Jaipur had a number of appointments scheduled, said Candace Clarke, marketing director. Clarke said with a full slate of commitments and many new items on display, the show couldn't have been much better.
"It's been a great market. Because we launched over 500 products at this show, it's created a lot of excitement for when they're going to be shipping," she said. "All of the new looks have been received better than previous launches."
Allen Robertson, vice president of sales for Capel Rugs, said the manufacturer had its best successes with its Williamsburg and Cococozy rugs. He said the market played up to expectations.
"When you introduce 17 brand new items, the goal is always to place all 17. If we can get 25% of those as initial placement, that's pretty good and that's what it's working out to," Robertson said. "We're getting four or five items with everybody that's walking in the door."
Steve Mazarakis, vice president of the flooring division for Linon, said Atlanta sometimes offers the only opportunity to see some customers.
"The market has changed a little over the years but it's still a very viable market," Mazarakis said. "I get to see people here I won't see anywhere else unless I go to them and then I can't show them everything I have."
Kaleen Chief Operating Officer Monty Rathi said he believes, based on his experience this year and a good show in Atlanta, the industry will continue to rebound.
"Overall, it's been a good show. The market, in general, the sentiment is very positive. Everyone is going to have a good fall," Rathi said.
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