Shaw Industries announced today that it is exiting the area rug business and will convert its rug facility in Ringgold, Ga., into a luxury vinyl tile (LVT) manufacturing facility.
"The economics of the rug business today simply do not allow for future growth or encourage further investment," said Vance Bell, Chairman and CEO for Shaw Industries. "We have been intentional about exiting this business at a time when more opportunities exist for our associates."
Bell said most of the 400 associates employed by the Shaw Living Rug Division will have opportunities at other locations in the company. Customers will be serviced through a transition period.
LVT is the fastest growing category in the flooring market today. Shaw has been participating in this market for three years, but up until this point has not manufactured LVT. In repurposing the current facility to a new LVT manufacturing site, Shaw will be able to shorten the timeframe to begin manufacturing the product, utilize an existing facility, and keep jobs in the Ringgold area.
"We will continue to invest in businesses where we see future growth and opportunities," Bell said in a statement today. "Over the past few years, we have developed a significant business and market-leading position in the LVT flooring category. This new facility will provide domestic manufacturing for a portion of our product line, allowing us to further enhance our product development, service, and overall customer satisfaction."
Shaw plans to invest over $100 million in its new LVT manufacturing facility and when complete, the investment is expected to generate 200 new jobs in the Ringgold area. This investment follows $250 million in other recent expansion announcements by Shaw in carpet tile, hardwood flooring, yarn extrusion, and distribution.