Company upgrades facilities, hosts distributors to plant tours and gala celebration

Florim USA recently held a two-day event to unveil its newly renovated tile manufacturing facility to its customers. Nearly 200 distributor representatives traveled from throughout the nation to attend the plant tour and gala celebration.

Located in Clarksville, Tennessee, Florim USA is a subsidiary of The Florim Group of Italy and employs 403 people. This U.S. outpost of the Florim Group has been a focus of corporate investment since it was formed in 2000. Previous plant upgrades include the building of a raw materials facility, the addition of expansive warehouse space and racking systems and the conversion of equipment to produce 100 percent porcelain.

Florim USA's new presses are capable of producing large format tiles up to 72" by 72".
The latest renovations to the plant, as featured on the special tour for distributors, involve the rebuilding of "Plant 1" in the facility. Plant 1 features all new, state-of-the art presses, glaze lines, a kiln and a fully automated transference, boxing and palletizing system. In Florim USA's Plant 2, nine highly automated lines still continue to produce the majority of the company's overall capacity.

According to Florim USA President & CEO Mike Rohnert, the next generation of technology in the Plant 1 is the culmination of 2 1/2 years of work and planning and positions Florim USA strongly for future growth/expansion.

"Our rebirth began in earnest about 2 1/2 years ago," Rohnert said. "We were able to invest in new equipment and make a commitment to the marketplace. What we've done is take Plant 1 down to the concrete, and installed the latest tile-manufacturing equipment in the industry," Rohnert said. "This rivals anything that you will find in Italy, and the world."

Country star Sara Evans performed for more 200 Florim USA employees and guests at Nashville's Country Music Hall of Fame.
The new equipment has the three times the output of Plant 2's. While in Plant 2 the presses create tile at the rate of two 18" by 18", or four 12" by 12" tiles per stroke, Plant 1's presses produce twelve 12" by 12" or four 18" by 18" tiles at once. The new presses are also capable of producing up to 72" by 72" tiles-important as the marketplace's preference for large tile formats grows.

Additionally, the plant's increased automation has actually led to the creation of new jobs. "While we're becoming more automated, our growth in production capacity means we're actually adding staff," he said.

In the midst of equipment upgrades, Florim USA has invested in advanced quality control measures, augmented warehousing capabilities and new facilities and systems for sample fulfillment.

Florim USA, headquartered in Clarksville, Tenn., is a domestic manufacturer of porcelain tile products for residential and commercial installation. A subsidiary of The Florim Group of Italy, Florim USA is the maker of the nationally distributed Esquire and American Florim brands and is aligned with sister companies Floor Gres, Rex, Cerim and Casa Dolce Casa.