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CROSBY TILES’ LONGEVITY

CERAMIC TILE IMPORTS AND CONSTRUCTION TRENDS

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contents

102 RETAIL FOCUS 8

Crosby Tiles has been selling tiles in Western Australia since 1922. Peter Carter is leading the business into the next phase of its development.

INDUSTRY ROUNDUP 12 A promising tile apprentice has won the Trowel Trades

award and Davco has been discovering tiling talent of all ages around Australia.

STATISTICS 17 Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics relating to

ceramic tile imports for the 2018-19 financial year are summarised and scrutinised by Peter Halliday. It remains an important barometer of how the tile industry is performing.

SHOW REPORT 24 At this year’s Coverings event in Orlando, Florida,

international correspondent Joe Simpson found that tile manufacturers are continuing to explore the full potential of inkjet decoration.

SUPPLY 34 Contributor Bryan Vadas sees light at the end of the

tunnel following a period of over supply.

PROJECT SPOTLIGHT 38 Little Spain in one of New York’s popular restaurant

districts gets a major tile makeover.

Tile Today now on: @tiletodaymagazine @tiletodaymagazine tile-today-magazine

www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au


NATIONAL FINAL SEPTEMBER SYDNEY NSW

REG

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com AL CH A petin g for MPIONS th AUS TRA e title

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FO REWOR D

TILE TODAY

Encouraging talented tilers, young and old, and everything in between is what this issue is mainly about. The next generation of tilers were celebrated at the Trowel Trades Awards. Davco’s search for Australia’s Best Tiler is the first competition of its kind in Australia, following similar events in China and Argentina. The company is getting behind the industry’s best practitioners. The national final is being held in September and we will provide coverage in the next edition.

Proudly produced and printed in Australia ELITE PUBLISHING CO PTY LTD ABN: 27 006 876 419 PO BOX 800, Templestowe, Victoria, Australia 3106 Ph: + 61 3 9890 0815 Fax: + 61 3 9890 0087 Email: info@elitepublishing.com.au Website: www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au www.elitepublishing.com.au

In other stories, we recognise the ongoing progress of Crosby Tiles in Perth (WA) after nearly 100 years in business. A lot of its success is based on continually refining its range, making it easy for its customer to do business with them, offering best value for money prices and providing the best products available. Managing director Peter Carter is well regarded in the industry not just for having a long-established business but also through his work as president of the Australian Tile Council.

PUBLISHER Vicky Cammiade vicky.cammiade@elitepublishing.com.au

Once again, Peter Halliday from Decor8 Tiles provides his summary and insights on the latest statistics to come from the Australian Bureau of Statistics on ceramic tile imports. In this edition, he makes a connection to the changes and challenges faced by the construction industry.

MACHINERY EDITOR

International correspondent Joe Simpson writes about what he saw at the Coverings event in Florida earlier this year and a colourful tile project in one of Manhattan’s vibrant restaurant districts. It’s enough to make you want to travel the world to see all the major tile projects. Until next time,

EDITOR Betty Tanddo betty.tanddo@elitepublishing.com.au INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT Joe Simpson joe.simpson@elitepublishing.com.au Philip Ashley philipneilashley@yahoo.com.au SALES & MARKETING MANAGER Trudi Woodward trudi.woodward@elitepublishing.com.au CIRCULATION For circulation enquiries please email: info@elitepublishing.com.au GRAPHIC DESIGN Plum Publishing Pty Ltd dave@plumpublishing.com.au PRODUCTION For artwork and production enquiries please email: dave@plumpublishing.com.au PRE-PRESS Prominent Digital

Betty Tanddo Editor

PRINTED BY Prominent Press Pty Ltd ELITE PUBLISHING CO PTY LTD PUBLISHERS OF: Flooring Magazine, Discovering Stone Magazine, Finishes & Surfaces Magazine, TileToday Magazine, Supplier Magazine and FB Magazine.

FRONT COVER IMAGE

Leading the Industry

The Metro range stocked by Beaumont Tiles unites the decorative and subway design concepts. Its undulating surface makes it appear rustic or handmade, and takes its cues from moulds and glazing techniques from decades ago. Available in ten shades (including the Sea Green shown in the front cover image) and two finishes, this collection has a W4 rating which means the tiles can be used as a flooring option.

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ELITE PUBLISHING CO PTY LTD. All rights reserved. No part of this publication maybe reproduced, transmitted or copied in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system, without the express prior written consent of Elite Publishing Co Pty Ltd. Viewpoints, opinions, claims, etc expressed in articles appearing in this publication are those of the authors. The Publishers accept no responsibility for the information supplied or for claims made by companies or their representatives regarding product performance, etc or for any errors, omissions, misplacement, alterations, or any subsequent changes, or for any consequences of reliance on this information or this publication.

DAVCO DISCOVERS TILING TALENT

Please note: Shade variation is an inherent feature of tile production. The Publisher is not liable for any discrepancy between images published in Tile Today and actual products.

CROSBY TILES’ LONGEVITY

CERAMIC TILE IMPORTS AND CONSTRUCTION TRENDS

6 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

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F E AT U R E D P R O D U C T S

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TRADE FAIRS

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INDUSTRY NEWS


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R ETAI L FOCUS

Continuous evolution delivers success for Crosby's Crosby Tiles keeps ahead of the curve by being transparent with clients and staff, while emphasising knowledge and training

Above: Peter Carter is an industry stalwart. He is managing director of Crosby Tiles and sitting president of the Australian Tile Council.

A

t a time when businesses often keep and withhold information, Perth-based Crosby Tiles has always been about providing more information to its clients, not less. This means customers can have a full understanding of the tile products available and the suitability to their needs. As a result, training and staff development are very important elements to the Crosby brand, according to managing director Peter Carter, who also serves as president of the Australia Tile Council. “To do that, we are always sharing information with our staff both formally and informally and the flow is both ways,” he explains. “With some of the most experienced tile professionals in Australia on staff, Crosby’s are often the go-to point

for anyone in the building industry looking for advice. “Additionally, many of our consultants have a designer or decorator background or training. Our biggest asset is the length of time our staff have been with us as there is no substitute for experience.” Peter is also unafraid to re-invest in his business even when the market is down in terms of trading. He believes the market in Perth is at its lowest point in the last 40 years. “Unemployment is at an 18-year high and housing prices are the lowest in the country (the medium price in Perth is $472,000),” he said. “Housing starts are down over 55% from their peak four years ago and 2019 is proving to be extremely challenging for anyone in the building industry.

“Sales volumes, prices and margins across the industry have fallen dramatically over this period. Current forecasts are for a long, slow climb back commencing sometime in 2020, but forecasters have been saying that for two years now. It is unlikely prices and margins will ever get back to what they were before the market crashed.” Despite the current state of the market, Peter has led Crosby Tiles through its recent showroom renovation in the suburb of Osborne Park and the tiles it has to offer. In addition to products that cater for the mainstream tile market, it has now developed a unique range of designer-led products that gives the company a strong competitive advantage. Not known for stocking boutique ranges in the past, “clients 10

8 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au


are very surprised by how many and variety of these type products we now have as well as the value in the prices of these products,” said Peter.

Home improvement

Above: Exterior of the Crosby Tiles modern showroom in Osborne Park

Above: The Osborne Park showroom has recently undergone a renovation

Right: Part of the interior of Crosby Tiles’ Osborne Park showroom

Above: Crosby Tiles has just expanded its designer range of tiles

10 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

Crosby Tiles primarily services residential builders and home renovators and has a growing clientele for its expanded designer range of tiles. With well over a hundred tile shops of some sort in Perth, Crosby’s has managed to remain the largest tile distributor in Western Australia by staying ahead of the market and creating unique points of differences all the time, explains Peter. “From the design and layout of our showrooms to the way we display products; all are underpinned by an impeccable level of service and desire to look after our customers. “Additionally, we only deal with suppliers that can provide high quality products the way we want them, and meet levels of service that allow us to satisfy the standards our customers expect of us. Those supplier relationships have been built over many, many years and have become integral to who we are and what we do,” he said. Some of the major suppliers that deal with Crosby’s include Savoia, Mirage, Refin, Lanka, National Ceramics and Southern Cross Ceramics. “We believe we are quite unique in this space. We deal with a minimum number of suppliers to maximise our position with each. And it’s not all about the price, even though our selling prices are some of the lowest in WA,” said Peter. “Quality, reliability, level of service and flexibility are all crucial elements our suppliers must have, to do business with us. Along with being on trend or ahead of it. “We buy from Italy, Europe, Asia and most importantly we are great believer in supporting Australian products with around 50% of our products supplied locally. “We are one of the few companies that hasn’t been intoxicated by Chinese products and prices. Whilst the average tile shop in Perth has over 60% of its product sourced from


China, Crosby’s is just 12% because we only deal with Chinese companies that fit our demanding criteria and the customer must always come first,” he added. The team at Crosby’s travel the world at least once a year to update its range with all the latest trends, colours and designs.

In store sales Crosby’s philosophy does not involve having specific “sales” or similar promotions because Peter believes it offers the best value products to its customers, “all day every day”. However, there are always extra special deals on discontinued lines available for people who looking for a bargain in the stores. The business has also tailored its website to service its two main types of customers. Firstly, designers and specifiers and secondly, the general public who are seeking a more conceptual or coordinated format.

Crosby’s has not added an ecommerce component to the website because it has found that tiles are not the type of product that is bought online, according to Peter.

History Crosby Tiles was the first tile company of its kind in Australia and was first established in Perth in 1922. “When we first moved to Osborne Park in 1975, it was considered a long way from Perth, and there was no freeway. The area was transforming from market gardens to an industrial estate,” explains Peter. “Osborne Park is now a massive retail area and there are 25 tile shops just in our block, which is only one square kilometre in size.” Located in the municipality of Stirling, the most recent census data in 2016 indicates that it is a suburb with over 4,000 residents with a median age of 33 years. It is mainly urban but close to the coastline too.

Crosby Tiles is a proudly Western Australian owned and operated company with two outlets and widely recognised as the state’s leading ceramic tile merchant. When asked what makes the WA market for tiles unique, Peter responds by saying: “Its isolation. It is one of the purest markets in Australia regarding quality of tile and size and high standard of tile stores.” After 40 years in the tile industry and from his vantage point as head of the Australian Tile Council, Peter has seen the industry grow from its infancy of supplying just a small range of product in limited sizes, colours and finishes mainly to bathrooms, to a multi-billion dollar industry that covers a myriad of sizes, colours, finishes and textures for almost any wall or floor application. He remains optimistic about the industry and manages Crosby Tiles as an evolving entity that is always turned towards the future. n

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I N D U ST R Y R OU ND -UP

Tile apprentice winner The most Trowel Trades Awards ceremony in Melbourne earlier this year saw apprentice Casey Shannon receive the Best Second Year Apprentice honour. She has been completing a Certificate III in Wall and Floor Tiling, and juggling a part-time job as a personal trainer in her off hours. Casey describes herself as a “perfectionist” and her “above and beyond” approach makes her highly valued by her employer, Bravada Waterproofing. Casey’s interests outside of work have a strong community focus. She regularly volunteers at marathons, helping clients achieve their fitness and wellbeing goals through these events. Described by her teachers as a forward thinker who showed great initiative, Casey’s mindset saw her excel in the workshop. “Casey took the leap into a male-dominated trade and demonstrated great skill and passion,” said tiling teacher Frank Vanzella. In terms of choosing a worthy recipient of the Trowel Trades award, Frank said he looks for apprentices who have a good work ethic and a willingness and strong desire to learn. In addition to a sincere interest in the job and punctuality, Frank believes in the importance of the following traits in apprentices:

Not surprisingly, there have been a number of changes in the students who have participated in the wall and floor tiling course over the years. Frank said one of the biggest developments has been the use of technology and how apprentices used it in their work. “There has been a big shift in attitude. More apprentices these days are fully committed to their job,” he adds. There are also industry challenges that tile students are facing today and the Holmesglen TAFE course is addressing these issues. “Like many other trades, products and techniques are always evolving. Bigger tiles and large formatted sheet tiles and new designed layouts for wet areas are always changing the way we are laying tiles. “TAFE and industry go hand in hand to teach new apprentices on all new techniques and products available to the students, so they have a better understanding of current work practices,” explains Frank. Sponsors for this award include RLA Group, Parex Davco, B.A.T. Trims, Laticrete, Bostik and Ardex.

• Being able to manage themselves and their work by knowing their role and responsibilities in the business and meeting all job requirements. • The ability to prioritise their work and manage time well. Being productive and allowing that to influence co-workers. • Being goal oriented and the capacity to push themselves to do the best that they can – not content with just enough. • Having patience and hardworking, and always having a “can do” attitude. The ability to work things out, with assistance if needed, no matter how challenging the task. • If they are passionate about their work they will enjoy doing it. When people enjoy their work, it will naturally bring out the best.

Casey Shannon receives the Best Second Year Apprentice honour at the Trowel Trades Awards

(l-r) Jeff Kirkley, national business manager – tiling, RLA Group; apprentice winner Casey Shannon, George El Kouri, sales manager – tiling (VIC) RLA Group; Michael German, marketing manager, RLA Group

Holmesglen TAFE tiling teacher Frank Vanzella with Elizabeth Jansz, head of the Building and Construction Trades department

12 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au


I N D U ST R Y R OU ND -UP

Davco recognises top tilers

(l&r) Macquaire Fields winner, Ben McGivern and Rob Luc, Davco NSW sales manager

Tiling systems expert, Davco has travelled around the country searching for talented tilers, acknowledging the passion they have for their trade and their local communities as an important part of their lives. The regional events, held recently in Brisbane, Newcastle, Sydney, Western Sydney, Canberra, Perth and Melbourne, were well attended with over 100 registrations to compete. Participants were required to complete multiple rounds including a written and practical test. The two scores are combined to determine the winner. The criteria that each contestant was judged on included overall appearance, cutting, screed, plumb, square, surface alignment, measurements, fully completed to drawings, and safety. Each winner was awarded $500 and will be flown to Sydney for the national final in September to battle it out over two days of challenges on all aspects of the tiling trade. The overall winner will receive the prestigious title of “Australia’s Best Tiler”, a cash prize of $5,000 and an all-expenses paid, business class trip

to China to represent Australia at the international final. The judges consisted of a current World Skills judge and local TAFE teachers. They saw unique ability in each of the winners, whether that was speed, creativity, perspective or a great attitude. Chris Timms won the Newcastle regional event by scoring highly in his theory and doing a great job on his practical test. He operates his own business called Newcastle Tile Company, and enjoys working on projects that that require complexity and precision. A four-hour drive from Bundaberg

to Brisbane to participate in the competition was well worth it for David Snodgrass, who claimed the regional title. Unbeknown to David, his fiancé had entered him in the competition after reading about it in Tile Today magazine, the event's media partner. David has his own business called Q Tile Rite. He tiled the HIA Queensland Bathroom of the Year in 2007 with Bundy Homes. This has led to more work in upscale projects. Marjan Trakoski claimed the title for Canberra (ACT). Although Marjan started slowly he brought it home like a freight train, finishing

(l&r) Queensland winner, David Snodgrass and Peter Steinweiss (Davco)

(l&r) ACT winner, Marjan Trajkoski and Rob Luc, Davco NSW sales manager

(l&r) WA winner, Seb Gradisen and and Peter Steinweiss (Davco)

14 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au


his screed, grouting, joint sealing and cleaning in 20 minutes flat. He made a last minute decision to re-do some tiles, which ultimately paid off earning him the winning position. Marjan has been tiling for 31 years, starting in the late 1980s working in his family’s tiling business during school holidays. Since finishing school, Marjan has been a selfemployed tiler for 27 years. Ben McGivern, a local tiler from Glenmore Park, won the title for the NSW region of Macquarie Fields. He has been tiling for 15 years, learning his trade at TAFE and now operates his own business called Acute Tiling. Based in Sydney’s Northern Beaches, Sam Petrolo won the competition held at Randwick (NSW). Sam was encouraged by his wife to enter the competition as a bit of fun and give him the opportunity to showcase his tiling skills and passion. He runs his own business, Petrolo Tiling. Seb Gradisen is the regional winner from Perth (WA). A colleague

encouraged him to sign up for the competition. Ian Freemantle from Bendigo (VIC) is deemed the best tiler in Victoria. Confident of his ability and reputation in Bendigo, Ian signed up to take part in the event to pit himself against other formidable tilers in Victoria. He works for himself and specialises in tiling jobs such as swimming pools and glass mosaics, a skill which he learnt in Italy. Jake Hall, from Melbourne, is this year’s Wild Card finalist. Back in 2010, Jake won the Wall and Floor Tiling category at the World Skills nationals, which enabled him to represent Australia in the international competition in London, competing against 21 other tilers from all over the world. It’s been nine years since Jake has competed, so he entered the Davco competition to challenge himself and see how far he can go. “The commitment shown by all competitors has been amazing,” said Andrew Nunn, managing director, Davco Australia. “They’ve each

(l&r) Randwick winner, Sam Pertolo and Rob Luc, Davco NSW sales manager

sacrificed a day’s wages to potentially earn a spot in the final. Davco has always been committed to the tiling industry and development of skills. We are proud to be giving one of these finalists the opportunity to represent Australia in the inaugural world championship event in China.”


I N D U ST R Y R OU ND -UP

Seamless spaces with hidden lids Top builders and landscapers around Australia are opting to install seamless, integrated covers into tiled outdoor areas. They are doing away with the traditional round plastic access covers, drain grates, skimmer covers, and unsightly waste drain and plumbing vents by installing the HIDE inlay lid system. By adding HIDE inlay covers to these points, they are effectively hiding them from view, resulting in an aesthetically pleasing, smooth and uninterrupted finish. This product is the ideal finishing touch to any tile and paving project around the home. It can be used in a range of applications. Offering this small upgrade to clients can enhance a professional approach to a quality tiling project. It can be the perfect add-on. In addition to beautifying landscapes, the other significant advantages to this system include: • HIDE products are manufactured from 316L heavy-duty marine-grade stainless steel, offering unrivalled strength and performance over other alternatives. • Designed and engineered with safety in mind, it meets the highest Australian safety standards. • The HIDE lid sits flush so it cannot be lifted without the use of the supplied key, making it very safe around children. • Matching surrounding patterns through the inlay lid creates a very natural finish. Installed onsite, a tiler can mark and cut the stone/tile to suit the surrounds, matching any patterns and grout lines through the lid. • Consisting of two primary elements, the Edge Protector and the Inlay Lid, the system works together for an effortless solution to a common problem. • The Edge Protector sets the installation level and houses the inlay lid flush with its surrounds. It also prevents any surrounding tile 16 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

from chipping while providing access. The Edge Protector also holds the lid to allow for ventilation, airflow and water drainage. • The Inlay Lid can house a range of inlay materials and comes away from the Edge Protector in regular operation. Experienced end-users must choose the correct height based on their working material and glue in place with the supplied adhesive. Tilers really appreciate the HIDE system's ease of installation and strength benefits. These two components work together to avoid breakages and tile chipping, reducing the need for a contractor to return to the site to repair/replace damaged tiles and matchup concerns.

HIDE has developed a range of over 40 products to suit a range of size and depth applications. A kit consists of: • Inlay Lid • Edge Protector • Height adjuster • Adhesive • Contractor installation instructions • Homeowners care and maintenance advice • 10-year warranty A local distributor can be found on the website – www.skimmerlids. com.au – and distribution enquiries are welcome. n


S TAT I S T I C S

Ceramic tile imports 2018-2019 Peter Halliday presents the latest data on ceramic tile imports and how it is affected by changes in construction activity

T

he Australian building and construction industry has faced a number of challenges during the last year. Aside from the widely reported problems with combustible cladding and cracks appearing in several high-rise Sydney apartments, cracks have been appearing in the long running residential construction boom. Building approvals and dwelling commencements, especially multiunit dwellings, are both lower than one year ago. In July 2019, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reported residential building approvals had reached a six-year low, falling 25.6% in the 12 months to the end of June 2019. The largest fall in approvals was in multi-unit dwellings, a fall of 39.3%. Private single dwelling approvals fell by 14.8% in the same period. While lower building approvals point to a fall in future activity, building commencements are good indicators of recent and current requirements for ceramic tiles. Fig.1 illustrates the link between ceramic tile import figures and residential

building commencement numbers. The Housing Industry Association (HIA) expects dwelling unit commencements to drop to 170,000 in 2019, down from 221,877 built in the 2018. Forecasts suggest that 2019-20 will be the low point in dwelling construction with the mid 2020 forecast to see a gradual upturn through to 2022. There has been some positive news however with AMP Capital revising their forecast down from a 15% peak-to-trough fall to a 12% fall, while recent lending data showed an uplift in investor loans for the first time in almost one year. As tiles are required at the end of the construction cycle however, there is a timing delay in imports being affected. While the fall in building approvals has been occurring since 2017, the long run of almost record volumes of ceramic tile import levels has inevitably seen a downturn since late 2018. Imports of ceramic tiles in the 2018-2019 financial year (1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019) totalled 42,177,154 square metres with a total Australian

Customs value of A$455,488,586. This represents a decline of 4,056,741 square metres or -8.8% on the last financial year. The decline in Australian customs value was much lower, falling A$13,912,381 less or -3.0%. The rolling 12 month import quantity graph in Fig.2, illustrates the sharp downturn in ceramic tile imports since the September Quarter 2018. While the decline over the full financial year was -8.8%, the decline in the last three quarters compared with the same quarters in the previous year was greater at -10.5% in December Quarter 2018, -17.3% in March Quarter 2019 and -13.4% in the June Quarter 2019. The detailed breakdown of the import data by country of origin and destination state is shown in Fig.3. The average price per square metre of imported tiles increased to A$10.80, a reversal of recent declines in average value, due to the ongoing decline in Australia’s foreign exchange rate. Once again, over 91% of imports originate from just four nations. China still supplies the overwhelming 18

FIG.1 DWELLING COMMENCEMENTS AND TILE IMPORTS

Data source: ABS, HIA

www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au | TILE TODAY #102 | 17


FIG.3 TOTAL CERAMIC TILE IMPORTS 2018-2019 FINANCIAL YEAR IMPORT DESTINATION STATE COUNTRY OF ORIGIN

New South Wales

Northern Territory

Queensland

Bangladesh

216

Belgium

119

South Australia

Tasmania

Bosnia and Herzegovina Brazil

135,923

2,495

33,668

2,394

Bulgaria

12,687,749 6,022

Ecuador

2,702

160,539

5,837,676

149

France

12,415

1,699

Germany

76,888

Hong Kong (SAR of China)

1,475,997

2,736

13,546

10,792

122 3,322

25

390,208

952

25,009

52,039

Indonesia

121,880

10,060

112,783

24,696

Iran

623

Italy

1,544,781

Japan

30,169

Jordan

1 7

Malaysia

783,101

10,364

250 9,669

165,369

Lebanon

56,338

587,419

156,567

3,635

270

6,996

9,888

875,987

226,012

Mexico

2,603

65

Morocco

11,190

626

Netherlands

10,404

New Zealand

3

30,903

8,899

737 88

32,159

7,643

South Africa Spain Sri Lanka Taiwan Thailand

5,863

8,662

218,170

2,889,376

3,133

3,288

34,749

442

11,808

2,079,907

29,894,314

257,571,524

7,332

15,859

144,578

2,702

76,653

7,491,139

2,105

32,920

1,146,099

31,966

12,206

134,589

3,704,339

7,893

79,742

86,150

72,546

626,904

5,313,327

43,030

23,957

346,771

3,889,600

1,683

2,324

2,438

160,793

50,272

1,408

20,416

70,130

532,029

3,736,603

95,047,649

166,657

12,677

213,408

2,423,594

1

2

2,502

182,262

1,803,058

1,366,447

104,402

7

3,393

3,421,185

24,502,124

2,709

75,045

2,492

14,308

850,005

30,205

41,346

308,738

3,171

3,262

44,044

2,534

2,534

11,929

922

922

14,993

2,022

2,022

60,054

134,424

2,490,369

1,023

19,802

501

25,279

691

12,585

70,825

21,692

111

5,055

196

4,732

12,529

392,349

138,080

1,707,520

37,807,886

7,070

256,031

460,918

3,470,170

4,536 12,362

7,827

875,233

111 239,976

4,984

3,267

691

107,287

141

1,279

105

88,847

6,105

3,301

396

904,337

249 1,960

1,023

Saudi Arabia Serbia

227

41

Poland

Russian Federation

227

10

Pakistan

Puerto Rico

14,003

6,954

Oman

Portugal

5,092

165

19

India

Korea, Republic of

216

35,027

161,306

Total Customs Value AUD

46

2,505

100

Greece

Total Square Metres

442

Czech Republic Egypt

Western Australia

156

Canada China (excluding SARs and Taiwan)

Victoria

1,244

1,052

1,347

68,195

7,057

96,525

44,585

326,599

3,186,895

Tunisia

339

339

11,404

Turkey

61,208

233

58,677

18,594

41,144

10,960

190,817

3,126,796

181,562

6,582

6,228

5,921

73,177

1,583

275,052

3,511,855

85

2,391

47

3,283

198,011

14,968

367,438

United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States of America Viet Nam

760 4,664

6,981

29

84,103

34,923

7,214

3,294 1,118

8,513

135,871

1,030,889 455,488,586

Grand Total

17,512,744

249,604

8,012,069

2,012,168

236,768

10,808,548

3,345,253

42,177,154

State Share

41.5%

0.6%

19.0%

4.8%

0.6%

25.6%

7.9%

100.0%

Data source: ABS

18 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au


FIG.2 CERAMIC TILE IMPORTS MOVING 12 MONTH TOTAL

Data source: ABS

volume of imports. China’s share of tile imports increased to 70.9% of total imports although the total square metres declined. China exported 29,894,314 square metres, down 1,565,353 square metres or -5%. Chinese imports represented 56.5%

of the total import value, an increase of 2% over the previous financial year. While China supplied the overwhelming majority of tiles imported into Australia, there were changes in the ranking of other major exporting nations. Fig.4 illustrates the

volume of the five largest exporting nations to Australia. It is notable that India has risen from the eighth largest source to the fifth largest in the last financial year. Italian imports declined by 987,490 square metres or -21%. Italy still represented 8.9% 18

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of the total, down from 10.2% last financial year. Imports from Malaysia declined by -19.8% but represented 8.1% of the national total. Like China and India, Spain increased its market share slightly from 3.7% to 4% but imports declined by just 11,172 square metres. As the fifth largest source nation in 2018-2019, imports from India increased by 260,318 square metres to 615,367 square metres. Last year’s fifth largest source nation, Thailand, continued its steady decline, falling another 345,142 square metres or -51.5% on the previous financial year. State imports over the last five financial years are shown in Fig.5 while Fig.6 graphically shows each state’s imports over the last nine years. In 2017-2018, New South Wales was the declared destination for 41.5% of all tiles imported into Australia. While

the volume fell by 1,249,699 square metres or -6.7% when compared with the last financial year, the share of the national imports rose by 0.9%. Volumes imported to Victoria fell by 691,426 square metres or -6.0%, a slightly smaller percentage fall when compared with NSW but the fall represented approximately half the volume of the fall in NSW. Victoria increased its share of the national market to 25.6%. Queensland imports fell by 1,530,296 square metres or -16%, the largest fall of any state except Northern Territory. The decline can be seen clearly in Fig.6 and seems to have begun earlier than the downturn in other states. Imports to Northern Territory fell by -30.6% while imports to South Australia declined by -0.3%, Tasmania rose by 17.1% and Western Australia

FIG.4 CERAMIC TILE IMPORT TOP FIVE SOURCES

again fell by -13.1%, continuing a long period of flat or negative growth. A breakdown of imports by Harmonised Tariff codes is shown in Fig.7. The descriptions classify tiles by water absorption and traditional size categories. Porcelain tile with less than 0.5% water absorption remains the biggest single category totalling 57.8% of all imports. A further 20.3% of imports are tiles with water absorption of between 0.5 and 10%. Wall tiles or tiles with a water absorption over 10% make up 17.5% of all imports. Tiles specifically categorised as mosaics make up only 1.2% of all imports.

Peter Halliday is managing director of Decor8 Tiles

Data source: ABS

FIG.5 CERAMIC TILE IMPORTS - STATE SHARE Calendar Year

Financial Year

State Total % of annual total

2014-2015

15,138,310 36.3%

682,979 1.6%

8,563,024 20.5%

2,142,032 5.1%

210,162 0.5%

9,920,488 23.8%

5,092,978 12.2%

41,749,973 100.0%

13%

State Total % of annual total

2015-2016

17,876,255 39.2%

572,244 1.3%

9,697,908 21.3%

2,150,700 4.7%

204,007 0.4%

10,163,057 22.3%

4,914,468 10.8%

45,578,639 100.0%

9.2%

State Total % of annual total

2016-2017

18,618,431 40.9%

351,876 0.8%

9,811,664 21.6%

2,055,415 4.5%

213,268 0.5%

10,407,232 22.9%

4,051,627 8.9%

45,509,514 100.0%

-0.2%

State Total % of annual total

2017-2018

18,762,413 40.6%

359,866 0.8%

9,542,365 20.6%

2,017,243 4.4%

202,181 0.4%

11,499,975 24.9%

3,851,270 8.3%

46,235,311 100.0%

1.6%

State Total % of annual total

2018-2019

17,512,744 41.5%

249,604 0.6%

8,012,069 19.0%

2,012,168 4.8%

236,768 0.6%

10,808,548 25.6%

3,345,253 7.9%

42,177,154 100.0%

-8.8%

New South Wales (inc ACT)

Northern Territory

Data source: ABS 20 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

Queensland

South Australia

Tasmania

Victoria

Western Australia

Combined Total M2

Percentage Change On Previous Year


FIG.6 CERAMIC TILE IMPORTS BY STATE

Data source: ABS

FIG.7 CERAMIC TILE 2018 IMPORT HARMONISED TARIFF CATEGORY Harmonised Tariff Code

Description New South Wales

6907211001 Tiles, cubes and similar articles, water absorption

6907219002

6907221003

6907229004

6907231005

6907239006

6907301007

6907309008

6907401009

DECLARED DESTINATION STATE

coefficient by weight not exc 0.5% (excl. 690730 and 690740), whether or not rectangular, largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is less than <7 cm Tiles, cubes and similar articles, water absorption coefficient by weight not exc 0.5% (excl. 690730 and 690740), whether or not rectangular, largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is greater than >=7 cm Tiles, cubes & similar articles, water absorption coefficient by weight exc 0.5% but not exc 10% (excl. 690730 & 690740) whether or not rectangular, largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is <7cm Tiles, cubes & similar articles, water absorption coefficient by weight exc 0.5% but not exc 10% (excl. 690730 & 690740) whether or not rectangular largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is >=7cm Tiles, cubes and similar articles, water absorption coefficient by weight exceeding 10% (excl. 690730 and 690740), whether or not rectangular, largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is <7 cm Tiles, cubes and similar articles, water absorption coefficient by weight exceeding 10% (excl. 690730 and 690740), whether or not rectangular, largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is >=7 cm Mosaic ceramic tiles, cubes and similar articles (excluding those of 690740), whether or not rectangular, the largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is less than 7 cm Mosaic ceramic tiles, cubes and similar articles (excluding those of 690740), whether or not rectangular, the largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is greater or equal to 7 cm Finishing ceramic tiles, cubes and similar articles, whether or not rectangular, the largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is less than 7 cm

6907409010 Finishing ceramic tiles, cubes and similar articles,

whether or not rectangular, the largest surface area of which is capable of being enclosed in a square the side of which is greater or equal to 7 cm

Total Square Metres

Northern Territory

Queensland

South Australia

25,207

16,510

Tasmania

Victoria

Western Australia

Total SQM

60,871

19,828

192,898

SQM

70,483

% of State Total

0.4%

0.0%

0.3%

0.8%

0.0%

0.6%

0.6%

0.5%

SQM

11,060,278

139,084

4,164,895

1,011,484

157,628

5,996,191

1,648,635

24,178,194

% of State Total

63.2%

55.7%

52.0%

50.3%

66.6%

55.5%

49.3%

57.3%

SQM

8,492

1,663

95

12,410

% of State Total

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

SQM

2,622,300

27,865

2,123,222

297,445

20,318

2,852,849

614,425

8,558,424

% of State Total

15.0%

11.2%

26.5%

14.8%

8.6%

26.4%

18.4%

20.3%

SQM

13,621

3,890

68

9,625

7

27,211

% of State Total

0.1%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.1%

0.0%

0.1%

SQM

3,100,647

38,883

1,412,958

609,147

45,792

1,292,001

834,933

7,334,360

% of State Total

17.7%

15.6%

17.6%

30.3%

19.3%

12.0%

25.0%

17.4%

SQM

35,423

74,826

12,264

20

112,181

2,819

237,533

% of State Total

0.2%

0.9%

0.6%

0.0%

1.0%

0.1%

0.6%

SQM

97,062

13,718

9,869

211

75,126

9,067

205,054

% of State Total

0.6%

0.0%

0.2%

0.5%

0.1%

0.7%

0.3%

0.5%

SQM

8,114

2,203

15,982

6,538

2,104

23

34,963

% of State Total

0.0%

0.9%

0.2%

0.3%

0.0%

0.0%

0.0%

0.1%

SQM

496,325

41,569

175,213

48,845

12,799

405,936

215,421

1,396,107

% of State Total

2.8%

16.7%

2.2%

2.4%

5.4%

3.8%

6.4%

3.3%

17,512,744

249,604

236,768

10,808,548

3,345,253

42,177,154

2,160

0.0%

8,012,069 2,012,168

Data source: ABS www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au | TILE TODAY #102 | 21


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SHOW REPORT

COVERINGS

ALMOST ANYTHING GOES AT COVERINGS Joe Simpson found an increasingly diverse range of influences to be driving tile design trends at this year’s edition of Coverings Visiting Coverings in Orlando, Florida – billed as the largest international tile and stone exhibition and conference in North America – is always a pleasure and a privilege. Personally, this year was notable for me, as I was invited to chair the Global Tile Trends session. It was fascinating to discuss today’s design trends with three knowledgeable experts: Ryan Fasan, design and technical consultant for Tile of Spain; Cristina Faedi, manager of promotional activities at Ceramics of Italy; and Lindsey Waldrep, vicepresident of marketing at Crossville. We shared similar views, concluding that the current market is incredibly diverse, dynamic, challenging, and hard to pigeonhole. The focus at Coverings 2019 was on new and future trends in surface design, and how these trends can be used effectively within residential and commercial design schemes. The exhibiting companies curated the patterns, shapes, sizes, colours, and textures that they believe will provide fresh inspiration for designing with tiles. 26

MAIN PICTURE: Fossil from Serenissima delivers designs based on a selection of rare and precious stones in natural and polished finishes. The rich detailing of Fossil textures is particularly evident in the 800 by 1,800mm format and the 1,000 by 1,000mm size. The four colour options are Bruno, Crema, Perla and the darker hue of Piombo.


SHOW REPORT

COVERINGS

And it was a very eclectic offer, embracing both minimalism and maximalism; formats from 1,600 by 3,200mm gauged porcelain panels down to classic 100 by 100mm tiles, and even smaller; revivals of nonstandard smaller formats from the 1970s and beyond; elongated “metro” tiles; developments in classic square floor tile formats; and everything in between. Latest colours range from futuristic acid-bright neons to the rich, warm tones of the American Midwest, along with luxurious shades of “ink black”, particularly in marble-effects.

OVERALL TRENDS Coverings squarely reflected the macro trends seen at both Cersaie and Cevisama: gauged porcelain panels targeted at worktop fabricators; 20mm and 30mm exterior grade porcelain tiles; terrazzo-effects; encaustic-style cementine decors; faux marbles; grungy cement-effects with an industrial edge; and a plethora of small format tiles. The overall look this year was more diverse, colourful, richer, and less conservative. Quartzite and highly-polished onyx again featured prominently on the high-end stands; with impressive book-matched XXL slabs capturing the power and realism of the latest faux marble porcelain tiles. Cement- and concrete-effect tiles grow ever more sophisticated; with texture now adding softness to this sought-after contemporary aesthetic. This was one area where composite design really shows its strength. By this, I am referring to tiles that reference two or more natural inspirations and combine them to produce something unexpected. Wood/concrete fusions are popular, but Coverings also saw fabric/plaster, stone/marble, metal/concrete,

able metropolitan cement and is avail Cercom’s Moon range interprets Grey Moon, e, Whit Artic ding inclu rs colou of in an extensive range Green Moss. It is the first Cercom and Silicon Dark, Cosmo Blue and solutions. The finish options are collection offering wall covering Natural and Lux.

and wood/stone mash-ups; to name but a few of the modern material combinations out there. One manufacturer really summed up this trend when he described this range as, “45% marble 55% limestone”. Other trending options in the cement-effect category included alternating plain and raised textured strips, and décor inserts featuring plain glazed ceramic tiles, metallic listellos, or wood-effect pieces. This is another take on the mixed-material pairings used in the last two decades, but now produced entirely in inkjet decorated ceramics. Wood-effect tiles may no longer enjoy star billing but there were still original ideas to be found. Particularly striking are the decking/parquet fusion decors that have suddenly burst on the scene: perhaps as a result of the inside-out living craze. At their very best, like the Luthier range by Portinari, they look quite stunning. Here, oak is shown with reliefs that look like carved wood. The Luthier Line pieces in 300 by 1,200mm have line reliefs and a gradient design in wood colours. The Luthier Decor pieces in 600 by 600mm use the Muxarabis technique, the hand-carving technique used by musical instrument makers known as Luthiers. Also in the wood-effect category, the maxi-plank formats such as 300 by 1,800mm, really do justice to the super realistic graining, knots, and natural colouration of today’s best porcelain timber imitations.

Ceramiche Caesar’s Wh isper collection capture uncontaminated beauty s the of natural wood. It has a subtle surface texture and a palette com posed of five colours that captures nature’s variety. Each colour is available in two sizes: 200 by 1,000mm planks and 8 by 40inch chevron tile s. 26 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

Terrazzo-effects took somewhat of a back seat at Coverings, although there were some big, bold terrazzo effects, notably on the Vives stand. Stracciatella options only had star billing on a limited number of stands, edged out by other floor tile options such as hydraulic patterns, and geometric pieces such as the chevron, hexagon, and rhombus. 28


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SHOW REPORT

COVERINGS

Apart from marble- and cement-effects, the dominant floor tile trend was quite plain and conservative: grey and beige designs that fall somewhere in the stone to cement spectrum but appear to have no specific material inspiration. The trick seems to be to offer surfaces with just enough variety – be that speckles, lustre highlights, mottled colours, or simulated ageing – to make the finished floor both visually interesting and practical from a maintenance stand point. These “composite” looks seem set to grow as a category, both in floor and, increasingly, wall tiles. It was interesting to see the return of middle to large square formats to the US market, for so long dominated by medium sized rectangular sizes. On the wall tile front, plain and structured white tiles remain highly popular, hardly surprising as one manufacturer estimates that they account for up to 80% of sales by volume in the USA. Manufacturers are reporting growing interest in gloss, matte and satin combinations, effectively tone-on-tone surfaces. Striped surface effects, where texture provided the visual interest, were also dominant.

ART INFLUENCES Shapes and patterns were influenced by historical references, including Art Deco and the Bauhaus, but also spanning Arts & Crafts, ancient Moorish forms, and most decades from the 20th century, notably the 1960s and 1970s. Texture is now a key component

e is produced Edimax Astor Ceramich The Terra range from soft, ses res exp mm size, and in a rectified 200 by 200 complemented by es, ton rich six in es spatula-like, surfac tions. three different decora

for many new ranges, an evolution of the “natural aesthetic” which has been gaining popularity in recent years. As 2019 celebrates 100 years since Bauhaus was founded by the German Modernist architect Walter Gropius, the influence of Avant Garde art and design remains prominent. Its distinctive visual language was evident at Coverings and was most clearly seen in tile patterns and layouts that explore geometric compositional structures, along with intersecting segments of shapes, patterns, and colours. Embracing this year’s predominant colour trend – Living Coral and Neo Mint – the sprinkling of acid-bright colours added a vibrant appeal to Coverings, possibly a reflection of the participation of so many Spanish manufacturers this year. This multiplied the range of attractive wall tile options on display. What really caught the eye were the fresh, crisp tones that have evolved from standard pastel colours. These designs reflect the growing impact of innovative production technology, notably digital inkjet decoration, and its fusion with more organic design influences.

Cir Ceramiche's Key West range offers glaze colours in a palette of pastel shades which evoke the warm marine atmosphere and sunlight landscape s of the Florida Keys. It comes in 11 colours – Rock, Oyst er, Pearl, Wave, Shell, Sand, Seafoam, Aqua, Sky, Ocean, and Coral. The formats are 100 by 200mm, 100 by 300mm, and 200 by 200mm.

28 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

Visually optimistic, and a refreshing break from grey and neutral schemes, these contemporary palettes reflect both interior designers’ and home owners’ growing confidence in the use of bright colours. 30


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COVERINGS

ct range in porcelain is a designer wood-effe Shibusa from Isla Tile ent. A light mood of sophisticated refinem that emanates a sense in 600 by 600mm le ilab ava is ich wh e, fac overwrites the wood sur s. and 300 by 600mm size

Genesis by Florida Tile emulates cement enc austic tiles. It is design to replicate the look of ed form-poured concrete with rustic striations. Thi collection is available s in 200 by 200mm and 300 by 600mm.

One clear direction is a fresh reinterpretation of Art Deco. Several of the ranges on display featured decorative patterns and shapes with Art Deco’s distinctive rounded shapes, metallic sheens, and curved lines, offering a fresh take on the geometric patterns that have dominated over the past few years. These ranges reference the opulence and glamour of the original Art Deco era, but are filtered through a modern sensibility with a playful, yet elegant style. In these ranges, bold colour and metallic finishes add visual interest.

DARK ELEGANCE While white marble remains a staple of the interior design world, there is no doubt that the trend for deep black interiors, particularly dramatic bathrooms modelled on luxury spas and boutique hotels, has gathered momentum over the past year. At Coverings, there were many instances of dark interior tiles creating an intense statement. Since dark colours optically recede, using black tiles can open up small spaces, while textured surfaces add a different dimension, ensuring that these dark interiors do not look too flat. To enhance the look, matte black tiles were often paired with a black grout for a sophisticated finish. But it was not all about saturated black. This trend towards darker looks also took in anthracite greys and blueblack hues. One of the drivers here is the ability that inkjet offers to take a standard marble, and play with its colour spectrum. This means that it is now possible to create a Pulpis stone in a lead colourway, or Nero Marquina in midnight blue. Contemporary marble-effect tiles at Coverings highlighted the widespread use of golden veining, which adds a subtle hint of glamour and provides 30 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

Soul sapwood knots in a 200 by 1,200mm form at by Ceramiche Piemme

a useful reference tone that can be picked up in brassware or contrasting wall finishes. Alongside the XXL porcelain slabs, with many manufacturers promoting their worktop capabilities, there was a counter current where the focus was on artisanal individuality and hand-crafted products. This year’s “hand-made” tiles tend to offer a richer colour palette, and subtle textures. Inkjet decoration is now being used to recreate the colour variety that was originally the by-product of differential firing and oxidation in hand-stacked bottle kilns. Even craquelle glaze effects are being simulated using inkjet. These ranges are very much part of the “authentic” design direction that stands in opposition to high-tech, mass produced products, and is characterised by the “reclaimed” look. This design move is combined with a wide variety of textures and tones to add depth and contrast, 32


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SHOW REPORT

COVERINGS

helping to create a multi-dimensional space. Colours include warm metallic tones as well as greens and browns, while opulent stone and marble patterns, and textured finishes, evoke a sense of luxury. Blue remains the accent colour of choice, particularly for Italian manufacturers. However, Coverings also saw several US-based producers, and a few overseas factories, celebrating the rustic style and eclectic palette of the American Midwest. This includes rich, warm colours that can create a relaxed vibe. Echoing the range of tones seen across the regionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s pastoral landscape and buildings, this trend is largely inspired by nature and notably the sky, inland lakes or the tones of the land itself. Blue, green, pink, orange, and mustard can all be seen in this palette, with pastel and neutral tones used alongside deep, saturated shades.

by Alpine quartzite traditionally Quarzi by Serenissima is inspired ious lapped finish, and luxur a s offer It used in architecture. the original material. to ful faith a natural finish, that is more ular sizes, Quarzi also includes mod of ber num large a in able Avail mosaic options.

2020 Finally, a word about Coverings itself. To my mind it remains the best curated and organised tile show on the planet. In Orlando, the ability to fit so many manufacturers in one massive hall really makes the visiting experience easier and more time-efficient. Arranging the exhibitors into country-specific villages, often around a central hub, also makes sense, and there were really strong showing this year from Italy, Spain, Brazil, USA/Mexico, and China. However, there were also exhibitors from Portugal, Turkey and other important producer nations. With 94 exhibitors, Spain led the way in wall tiles, and this brought a lot of colour and vitality to the show. Many of the Italian factories had used feedback from Cersaie and Coverings to refine their offer, with many of the prototypes shown earlier now consolidated into fewer production ranges. But there were also brand-new products making their debut at the show, both from US-based producers and overseas importers.

getic wall tile Hanami by Vives is a range of ener e series is made entir the rful, colou and t designs. Brigh different six are e Ther at. form in a 230 by 335mm Cloud, and Mint. It is colours: Ivory, Beige, Pink, Grey, format with three fresh also available in a 75 by 335mm ns. decoratio

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Put all these factors together, plus great flight connections and a plentiful supply of hotel beds, and visiting Orlando really makes sense for tile buyers the world over. And next year Coverings 2020 heads for New Orleans. I well remember the last time the show was held in Louisianaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s party city, so next yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s event will be well worth a visit on so many levels. I hope to see you all there! n


Bryan Vadas believes the market for tiles is currently overstocked, and the pressure to liquidate stocks is now higher than ever

Too many tiles, not enough people In this opinion piece, Bryan Vadas believes some markets are overstocked with tiles but an improved situation will soon emerge

B

ack in high school, we learned basic economics. Supply and demand dictated the rise and fall of prices. Lots of people wanting “stuff” that was in short supply forced pricing up, and a contrary movement on price occurred when supply was plentiful while demand was down. The latter is now playing out as in a large part of the world there is a plethora of stock, yet consumers with disposable income seem to have gone into hiding. Having spent most of the first three months of this year travelling around Australia I constantly heard claims of the market being well down. Digging deeper, the Housing Industry Association figures from around the same time provide some data around the rhetoric, and indicate that in some of the larger markets, the slide has only just begun. • WA - including the previous financial year to June 30, the market will have contracted 65% in four years. Fortunately, there is recovery forecast, starting later this year. • NSW - Australia’s biggest market

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has fallen 12% in two years after the massive property bubble burst. The forecast for an almost 30% further decline in the next two years. • Victoria - Australia’s second biggest market is forecast to drop 40%. • Queensland - the third biggest market in the country will have fallen around 25% but seems to be on the verge of a rebound. • Nationally, we are half way down the slippery slope of decline, with the current falls being forecasted to continue for at least another year. In isolation, these forecasts bode poorly for the market. However, we have the “imperfect storm” brewing here. The recent royal commission into the banking sector has seen banks tighten up their lending, meaning there is less money flowing into the economy for consumer spending. The Reserve Bank (which regulates monetary policy) has kept interest rates at record lows for three years, but is now considering cutting them

to even lower levels in the coming months in an attempt to stimulate the economy. However, if the banks are not lending, many experts fear that this move by the Reserve Bank will be a futile exercise.

Relevance to tiles To further compound the issue, the market for tiles is currently overstocked, and the pressure to liquidate stocks is now higher than ever. Most tile businesses have curtailed their buying, especially bulk purchases from overseas. Many businesses are reverting to prudent stock liquidation measured, while others are verging on desperation and are quitting stock at ridiculously low prices. Australia is not the only country with an over-supply situation. Chinese factories have experienced a downturn in their domestic market, as well as uncertainty from their key export targets, so there is an excess of stock in their system as well. This is further evidenced by the number of Chinese factories that are sending an ever-increasing amount of sales people here to sell their products.


Pricing being quoted to businesses in Australia are at all-time lows. Fortunately, they are risk averse so are not so willing to take a chance on the unknown faces turning up on their doorstep. In addition, regardless of the prices being offered, sales have slowed significantly, so these businesses just aren’t buying if they have no way to sell the stocks. Despite the lack of success of Chinese factories attempting to go direct, it does create a perception of a decreased value and cost price for the products we are selling. China, as our largest supplier, will be an interesting case to follow over the course of the next year. Having spent almost a month there earlier this year visiting factories and trading companies in Foshan and Shandong, it is obvious there is also way too much stock in the Chinese system. There is more pressure on everyone to move this stock, to sell and recoup the capital lying

dormant in warehouses. Many Chinese manufacturers are clearing stock at any cost. When I asked what will happen once the stock clears, I received a common answer from a number of sources. They said prices will increase once new stocks need to be produced, minimum order quantities will be increased, and lead times will be longer than now as factories gather orders over time to make longer, more cost-effective production runs. The pendulum is very much in the favour of the buyer now, but it is forecasted by many to swing back once the current over-stock situation comes returns to equilibrium, presumably later in 2019. Two questions most often asked are how long will this slump last, and how long will it take to recover. This will largely be determined by how people maintain their heads during the slower period. Pricing goes down mush easier and faster than it goes up.

Short term liquidation of stocks is an exercise that can impact longer term sustainable profits as the market becomes conditioned to the new norms. Like a dam releasing flood waters, a slow controlled release of excess stock is healthy, yet an unregulated flooding of the market with cheap stock can cause the market to slump further, creating a deeper trough out of which the market will need to climb once recovery returns. We need to work smart and do more with existing customers while exploring new markets. Getting through tough times requires planning, execution and focus, whilst always being mindful of the impacts of the actions we take in our efforts to come through to the other side. n

Written by Bryan Vadas, Tile Agencies Group

IF ONLY THEY KNEW... Meet Ed and Sarah. They love their home and recently retiled their balcony. The job was perfect and they were thrilled. But 1 month later, they started to get leaching so they had their tiles professionally cleaned. The efflorescence returned so they cleaned it again. And again, and again.

IF ONLY THEIR TILE RETAILER OR TILER HAD RECOMMENDED EFFLOCK

ENSURE CUSTOMER HAPPINESS RECOMMEND EFFLOCK

Efflock is an advanced additive that prevents migration of calcium hydroxide and other salts that cause efflorescence.

For stockist or technical enquiries contact:

It works by impregnating mortar to provide a hydrophobic function that is unaffected by building movement or traffic wear.

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When added to screed, render, tile adhesive and grout, Efflock provides a primary water barrier and is proven to be a reliable solution for preventing efflorescence.

Ben Burdett – 0414 730 736

(National sales and technical enquiries)

Denis Suess – 0418 422 858

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F E AT U R ED P R ODUCTS

BATHROOMWARE FOR THE AGES

SEAMLESS AND EXPANSIVE Replicating the sophisticated look of polished concrete, the robust, yet soft and alluring Arkitek tile can unite a space for timeless appeal. An ideal flooring choice, Arkitek uses digital glaze technology to produce a silken finish that provides depth to each tile's design. BEAUMONT TILES (08) 8292 4444 www.beaumont-tiles.com.au

Inspired by classic 20th-century design, the Memory collection is a nod to the atmosphere and elegance of traditional bathrooms, interpreted in a contemporary manner. The curvy forms of tapware are idealised, and expressed with clean, sharp, modern lines. ARTEDOMUS 1300 278 336 www.artedomus.com

COLOUR FOCUSED TILES Artedomus has introduced Fiandre’s Colour Studio to its collection. It has eight soft and refined hues inspired by natural elements. The desaturated tones of the range go from “white” to “night”, and it has warm (Cream, Biscuit, Malt, Brown) and cold (Sage, Powder) shades in between. ARTEDOMUS 1300 278 336 www.artedomus.com

PRESSED EDGE BEAUTY The Union range unapologetically pays tribute to its vintage origins and is ideal for Scandinavian, Coastal and Country Chic inspired projects. Coming in ten whimsical pastel shades and two sizes, it is a reflection of the subway and pastel shade trends that have featured at international events such as Cevisama and Cersaie.

GLAMOUROUS SUBWAY

BEAUMONT TILES (08) 8292 4444 www.beaumont-tiles.com.au

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Designed to combine the decorative and subway design concepts, the Metro range creates an opportunity to mix and match, with style that has playful elements. Its surface is undulating and takes its cues from moulds and glazing techniques from decades ago. Available in ten shades and two finishes. BEAUMONT TILES (08) 8292 4444 www.beaumont-tiles.com.au


PR OJEC T HI GHLIGHT

The specified tiling of the Spanish Diner is a combination of World Woods porcelain floor tiles, and a floral patchwork wall tile called Patchwork-12 on the main bar

NYC eatery puts tile style on the menu Spanish tile manufacturer Vives Cerámica has played a key role in the creation of Mercado Little Spain, a stylish gastronomic project in New York City.

Above: The Bocatas & Empanadas zone features Strand, a wood-effect porcelain tile range Below: A classic monochrome combination of black and white creates a timelessly elegant look In La Barra

Yugo Cielo vintage porcelain wood-effect tiles are combined with 250 by 750mm Laterza Azul and Nevers Azul wall tiles in the Mar restaurant

I

n the Hudson Yards design district of New York, José Andrés, a Spanish chef based in the USA, together with the well-known Adriá Brothers, have launched a striking new gastronomic project: Mercado Little Spain. This is a modern version of the traditional Spanish market, which pays homage to the culture and cuisine of Spain located in the West Side of Manhattan. Spread across 3,200 square metres, it is divided into different restaurants and styled spaces that not only offer the full flavours of Spain, but a distinctly Spanish design and decoration. The project was carried out by Capella Garcia Studio. It features over fifty different tile designs by Vives Cerámica, including some of the brand’s most emblematic ranges. Each of the distinct spaces that make up this innovative project has a unique ambience, something that drew the design studio to Vives’ eclectic product portfolio. The Mar restaurant plays with different designs in blue tones to create an environment full of freshness. Yugo Cielo vintage porcelain wood-effect tiles are artfully combined with 250 by 750mm Laterza Azul and Nevers Azul wall tiles in the work area, while Orsa Avellana porcelain tiles are used in the appealing dining area. Leña Restaurant, one of the two restaurants at Little Spain, was designed using the World Woods porcelain tile series, combining the rhombus format with 192 by 1,193mm rectangles to create an original ceramic pattern for the central space. For the kitchen, a classic 100 by 200mm Morthier Natural bevelled design, and the Nordland


Leña Restaurant was designed using the World Woods porcelain tile series, combining the rhombus format with 192 by 1,193mm rectangles

ceramic wood-effect range, were selected. The Bar Celona cocktail bar features a highly original combination of Vives’ ceramic woods, generating a sophisticated and calm atmosphere. Gamma Miel tiles were used on the floor. They were paired with Milford Oro wall tiles from the Halsa series, and Dion Blanco porcelain tiles from the Efeso range. In La Barra, a classic monochrome combination of black and white creates a timelessly elegant look, with 200 by 500mm Rimini wall tiles used in a dotted pattern alongside 320 by 990mm Manger tiles. The finishing touch is provided by Raspail Blanco wall tiles that were used to cover the columns. This combination now provides a suitable setting with great personality in a zone where Little Spain offers its signature tapas selection. No Spanish eatery would be complete without Spanish wine. The designers wanted to elevate this area of the project and did so using Vives’ Rivoli wall tile range. They specified Raspail Blanco and Raspail Cereza designs in a timeless 100 by 200mm format. These tiles feature intricate designs in different reliefs, delivering traditional beauty with a modern twist. The Bocatas & Empanadas zone features one of Vives most iconic ranges, Strand. This design was inspired by OSB (oriented strand board), a basic construction material formed from recycled wood shavings. This wood-effect porcelain tile range has a matt finish and comes in two formats: 593 by 593mm and 593 by

The Bar Celona cocktail bar features Gamma Miel floor tiles, Milford Oro wall tiles and Dion Blanco porcelain tiles

1,193mm; both rectified. Strand-R in 593 by 593mm is available in six different neutral tones (Natural, White, Grey, Hazelnut, Cement, and Blue), while the 593 by 1,193mm format is offered in Natural. Strand and its OSB aesthetic occupy a privileged area within the Little Spain project. By combining the different

designs of Seriaki-R Natural Rojo and Nenets-R Natural Rojo, the designers achieved a striking and urban design, in tune with a city that never sleeps. One of Vives’ most recognisable designs – the 200 by 200mm Variette Sombra porcelain tile from the Vodevil series – covers the Frutas & Verduras (Fruits & Vegetables) space. 40

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The designers specified the Raspail Blanco and Raspail Cereza tiles in a 100 by 200mm format for the Vinos section

This tile, with its black and white lines, immediately attracts attention both in the bar and in the work area. In the Jamón & Queso (Ham & Cheese) zone, 100 by 200mm small format Tasty Cherry wall tiles adorn the inner part of the space, while the bar features Yugo Volcan; a wooden vintage-style porcelain tile. In this zone the reddish tones transmit great energy and provide a highly appropriate hue. With a design that brings to mind Spain’s classic and original food trucks, the Churros & Bravas section of Little Spain was decorated using Etnia Blanco wall tiles in different formats (100 by 200mm, 130 by 130mm, and 200 by 200mm) to provide a bold contrast to the red metal that was used to cover the area’s exterior surfaces. One of the central areas of the Little Spain Market is the Spanish

Diner. Here, the specified tiling was a combination of World Woods porcelain floor tiles, and a floral patchwork wall tile, appropriately called Patchwork-12, on the main bar. The latter is a cheerful and colourful tile that perfectly represents the Spanish style. This space also features Etnia Blanco wall tiles, in the same combination of formats (100 by 200mm, 130 by 130mm, and 200 by 200mm). The area of Little Spain devoted to deserts – Pasteles & Helados – delivers a look that stands out for its clear tones and luminosity. Efeso Blanco porcelain tiles are combined with Tielebe porcelain tiles from the Maori series. This design was used in the bar area and the back walls with its signature “marker” stamp. On the floor, Amalfi Beige, Amalfi Grafito, and Cavour Cemento porcelain

In the Jamón & Queso (Ham & Cheese) zone, 100 by 200mm small format Tasty Cherry wall tiles adorn the space

tiles are combined to create original symmetrical designs that have been used to separate the different areas. With additional contributions from graphic designer, Mariscal; muralist, Sergio Mora; and Lo Siento studio, Little Spain has evolved into a macro urban project that provides a powerful tribute to the brand España. The project dramatically underlines the potential of ceramic tiles in the creation of distinctive interiors, beguiling atmospheres, and strong brand identity; while also demonstrating Vives Ceramica’s credentials – something that earned the confidence of the architectural studio and project manager, as well as Chef José Andrés and the Adriá Brothers. n Story by international correspondent Joe Simpson


Ceramic trade catch up in China CeramBath, known as the most largescale and influential ceramic and bathroom expo in China, will usher in its next event across four days in October. It is regarded as the top trade expo of the Chinese ceramic and bathroomware industry. The event has become a significant communication platform to display new technologies, and products representing the latest trends from the ceramic sector. According to organisers, CeramBath has attracted over 200,000 international visitors from 172 countries to network, make orders, and create business opportunities. Situated in Foshan, China, CeramBath covers 470,000sqm over three venues: China Ceramics City, China Ceramics industry headquarters and Foshan International Conference & Exhibition Center. There are 800 exhibitors showcasing ceramic tiles, bathroom products, mosaics, stone, ceramic machinery, raw materials and other ceramic-related products. It aims to connect global buyers with local manufacturers. Attendees also benefit from special show prices for the available products at the show. As a significant trade organisation for the Chinese ceramics industry, CeramBath, also bears responsibility

for promoting the development of local economy in Foshan. It has become one of the most important trading regions and the event is an effective between China and the world.

The 34th Foshan International Ceramic & Bathroom Fair (CeramBath) will be held between 18-21 October, 2019.


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The Surface + Design Event China (Surfaces China) 2019 is taking place at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC) between December 11-13, and aims to create an annual networking and business program for the stone, tile, floor and wall coverings industry. The comprehensive three-day exhibition and conference will showcase products, technologies and services, and bring together distributors, wholesalers, retailers, designers, architects, builders, property developers and other industry professionals. The event will identify major trends, source the latest products and services, share expertise, and create business opportunities for attendees. It is organised by Informa Markets and the China Chamber of Commerce of Metals Minerals & Chemicals Importers & Exporters

Get your copy of Tile Today magazine... Just go to our website, click on 'Free Subscription' and fill out the form.

42 | TILE TODAY #102 | www.tiletodaymagazine.com.au

(CCCMC) association, in partnership with The International Surface Event (TISE), the largest floor covering, stone, and tile industry event in North America. Surfaces China 2019 will also present a free education program. The topics will cover themes such as New Products & Innovations, Interior Design & Systems, Trends in Design & New Products, Best Case Studies in Applications & Installations, and Interior Environment & Eco-friendly Products. Visitors will be able to hear from architects and interior designers on these topics. Held in China, the trade show will help exhibitors access this significant market and open the door to growth regions across Asia. Click here for more details: en.surfaceschina.com.

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Profile for Elite Publishing Co Pty Ltd

Tile Today Issue 102 | Aug 2019  

Fully endorsed by the Australian Tile Council, it is the only dedicated publication for the tiling industry, specifiers and allied trades in...

Tile Today Issue 102 | Aug 2019  

Fully endorsed by the Australian Tile Council, it is the only dedicated publication for the tiling industry, specifiers and allied trades in...