BrassCraft, at 65, points to its innovations
Novi, Mich.-based BrassCraft Manufacturing Co. is celebrating its 65th anniversary while promoting its commitment to "Made in the USA."
Since its founding in 1946, the company has led the industry in a number of innovations. It points to the invention of the modern-day flexible riser to the development of the one-piece water stop. Recent BrassCraft products include PushConnect water stops for quick, secure connections, and new solutions for tankless water heater installations.
According to Jeff Jollay, BrassCraft’s marketing and product development VP, BrassCraft continues to make high-quality gas connectors, appliance connectors, water connectors and water stops. "These products are designed, machined and assembled in the USA."
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Formica expands in China
Formica will be building a new laminates plant in Jiujiang, China, in the Jiangxi Province, to satisfy the demand for its products in Asia. The 500,000-sq.-ft. facility, Formica’s second laminates plant in China, will double the company’s capacity in China and allow for additional market growth. Its completion is slated for 2013.
In a prepared statement, Mark Adamson, Formica president and CEO, said: "The commercial construction boom, coupled with the massive construction of government-subsidized housing projects, has accelerated the demand for laminate. The Chinese market — already twice the size of the United States market — continues to grow by 15% a year. We’re confident about the future of laminate — the future of the Formica Brand — in the world’s largest market."
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NPD Group sees more clicks behind purchases
The Internet is playing a bigger role than ever in home improvement sales, and not just as a research tool, according to research from Port Washington, N.Y.-based NPD Group.
“It’s clear the Internet is playing an increasingly important role in the home improvement market,” said Kevin Gilbert, director of The NPD Group.
How much? Online home improvement sales grew 16% between September 2010 and August 2011, according to the group’s data. Sales of products previously researched online grew 8% in the same period.
Also, NPD found online sales represented more than 10% of air-powered tool and garage door opener accessory dollars, and nearly 10% of electric stapler/brad nailer and snow thrower/blower sales.
And more than half of garage door openers, air-powered tools and snow blowers/throwers sold were researched online by consumers before purchasing.
“Although consumer reviews rank low among top reasons for purchasing home improvement-related categories, today’s consumer is still looking toward the Web for information to help them decide which product to purchase, and possibly find the best deal," Gilbert said. "As retailers and manufacturers in this industry begin to embrace the Internet more and more as a way to connect with their customers through social media and their own websites, we will see this trend continue to grow."
I entirely agree on your
I entirely agree on your statements here. Not farther from our very own family case, I found it easier to browse for some new green roofs for home improvement last summer rather than wasting days or maybe weeks throughout the town entering every single construction and building improvement store in the city. We work full time, so we didn`t have the spare time to go out and make price comparisons. It`s much easier and faster to do that on the internet.