By: Mike Verespej
October 12, 2012
BALTIMORE (Oct. 12, 1:30 p.m. ET) — After several stops and starts and changes in top management, building materials manufacturer NyloBoard LLC is ready to sell its decking made from recycled carpet fiber.
“We’re fully prepared to take orders for delivery later this year,” said Doug Morse, who joined the Covington, Ga., company one year ago as president and chief operating officer. “We have enough capacity to make a dent in the high-end premium segment of the deck market.”
Unlike promises that previous top management had made, Morse said everything is now in order to launch a product that he believes has market leverage because it has no wood in it, making it naturally resistant to water, mold, mildew and termites.
The decking is made from loose-fill carpet and bonding resins that are free from volatile organic compounds, the company said.
“It looks and feels like wood,” Morse said in an interview at Deck Expo, held Oct. 10-12 in Baltimore, where the company announced that its non-composite NyloDeck is now available. “We take carpet fiber, prepare it, then use a proprietary resin formulation and make the end product on custom-build equipment.
“There is absolutely positively no corporate inertia to overcome to be successful,” he said. “This is ours to win.
“This management team will be the one here until there’s an IPO [initial public offering],” said Morse, a former metals industry executive. “It is an exciting product with a unique manufacturing process. This is not made like any other deck board out there. I haven’t had this much fun in 20 years.”
Morse declined to project sales for 2013 or market share potential. “But we believe we have a significant opportunity” in the marketplace, he said. “And we have the potential to double capacity as early as the middle of next year.”
The company employs about 25 at the company’s headquarters and 200,000 square foot plant in Covington, outside Atlanta, Morse said. “By the end of 2013, we expect to be eight-fold bigger as we ramp out.”
“Obviously it’s a very crowded space we’re entering,” said Craig Jacks, who joined the company as vice president of sales and marketing in April. “But the entire segment is growing and we think we bring something that is better.”
“The challenge we face is obviously production differentiation, building the brand awareness and getting the product into various channels,” added Morse.
He said NyloDeck has the “lowest coefficient” of any deck board for both thermal expansion and contraction in hot or cold temperatures.
“We call it the ‘non-composite’ composite deck board, because unlike virtually every other option available, NyloDeck contains no wood or PVC and it isn’t a cap stock product that can be easily compromised,” Morse said. “It is impervious to moisture, rotting, termites, mold and mildew and possesses excellent strength, durability and performance qualities.”
Morse said the company is still in the process of adding dealers and distributors, but that its initial sales focus with be the Northeast and Southeast.
A year ago at Deck Expo, the previous management team also had said that it had hoped to roll out NyloDeck in 2012.
But more time was needed, explained Jacks, for “extensive testing and product development” to make sure it was “ready to go.”
“The manufacturing process has gone through a rate rigorous review,” Morse said. “We have added pieces of carpet fiber handling equipment to improve volumes, drive out costs and improve yields. And we have added Six Sigma mechanisms to have a data-driven approach and reduce manpower” needed to make the product.
The 8-year-old company shifted into decking products four years ago when there was a dramatic drop in demand of more than 90 percent for its marine products — 8-by-20 foot sheets — that were used for hulls and to make cabinets on yachts because of their water-resistance and lightweight nature.
NyloDeck can be installed with conventional building tools and performs much like wood products in finishing and fabrication. It has an ease of installation because the mounting system is the structural system it will be attached to — whether that is metal, steel, or wood — and the fiber in the product provides the strength and adhesion to hold the screw.
NyloDeck is available in five colors: Saddle Rose, Harbor Gray, Newport White, Desert Spice and Mountain Mocha and comes with a 25-year limited warranty.
In addition to decking, Nyloboard also makes NyloTrim and NyloSheet. The company has received AC 174 certification for deck boards, guards and handrails from ICC Evaluation Services, a subsidiary of the International Code Council.