Archer Flooring Ltd

NOTTINGHAM'S FLOORING SPECIALIST

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Polyflor

History

Polyflor Covering the world

Based near Manchester, England, Polyflor is a major manufacturer of commercial floorcoverings, operating successfully throughout the world.

Polyflor are constantly striving to improve processes and products to reflect the changing demands of the marketplace. We have invested ca. £34 million in plant and equipment over the last decade, enhancing and expanding our product portfolio to provide added value for our customers.

The foundation of Polyflor’s success is our customer focus, and we work closely with contractors, specifiers and end users to understand their requirements and provide the ideal flooring solution for any installation. Polyflor have dedicated personnel within its salesforce, technical department and design team to provide comprehensive customer support. The company has developed an extensive network of agents, distributors and wholly-owned subsidiaries throughout all markets, to ensure excellent product and sample availability.

Polyflor is a quality-driven organisation, with our manufacturing processes and systems ISO 9001 accredited. We are fully committed to reducing the environmental impact of our operations, and also conform to ISO 14001.

From our early origins to today’s position as a leading manufacturer of commercial floorcoverings the success story continues ……

The Early Years

1915 - 1948

Domestic & International Expansion

1954 - 1978

Innovative New Product Development

1983 - 1999

Continued Strengthening of Polyflor Portfolio

2000 - today

The Early Years

1915 - 1948

1915

THE INCORPORATION OF JAMES HALSTEAD LIMITED
The company was founded as a weaving operation by James Halstead, who had previously been a Weaving Shed Manager for another Manchester company.
The original product line was woven cotton textiles, which were both dyed and waterproofed. Later, this was to turn to the production of rubberised fabric used in the manufacture of mackintoshes.
1934
JAMES HALSTEAD LTD MAKES FIRST FLOORING PRODUCT
James Halstead brought in a machine to friction calender (or roll) rubber onto a teased fabric. It was very durable and did not require salvaging, and was thus ideal for hard-wearing applications. It was sold to Briggs Motor Bodies (later Ford) as carpeting.
1935
JAMES HALSTEAD DIES
At the comparatively young age of 66, James Halstead died, leaving the company in the hands of his two sons, John and Herbert.
1948
BELSTAFF JOINS THE JAMES HALSTEAD GROUP OF COMPANIES AND THEY BECOME A PUBLIC COMPANY
The company was floated on the Stock Exchange on 30th April 1948, issuing 10,000 ordinary shares of ten shillings each.

Domestic & International Expansion

1954 - 1978

1954

THE GROUP EXPANDS ITS FLOORING BUSINESS
A major push behind this fledgling area resulted in fast growth. At about this time, the first installation of Polyflor was carried out by Robert Kerr, a leading Manchester flooring contractor. The group continued to invest heavily in flooring.
1963
THE GROUP STARTS MANUFACTURING IN SOUTH AFRICA, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND
Such was the success of the new products and technology that the group created overseas manufacturing and sales operations that reached right round the world. By the end of the '60s the international market had changed, and the benefits of single-site product development and manufacture were to result in refocusing on the UK operation, Consequently, the manufacturing operations in Australia and South Africa were closed in 1968 and 1969 respectively, and the manufacturing operation in New Zealand was sold to Skellerup Industries in 1971.
1971
LAUNCH OF POLYFLOR XL
Polyflor XL was the first single layer homogeneous flooring product to be made available in 2-metre width. This, at the time, was a very significant move, and the product has become one of the most successful ranges in our portfolio.
Also in 1971, Polyflex Plus was launched, and gained substantial business in the housing market.
1972
LAUNCH OF POLYTRED dB
Polytred dB was the forerunner to today's Polytred Acoustic. Also in 1972, the start was made to metrication of all product sizes.
1974
NEW PERIOD OF GROWTH
Following the death of Herbert Halstead, John's son Geoffrey Halstead took control of the business. Geoffrey had been with the company since 1947.
This heralded a new period of significant growth for Halsteads with Geoffrey at the head of a dynamic team of professional managers.
1976
POLYFLOR STYLE A LAUNCHED
The launch of Polyflor Style A was the culmination of a link with Bernat Klein. The shades were developed and linked to the Property Services Agency's interior furnishings scheme.
1978
MAJOR PUSH TO REDEVELOP THE EXPORT BUSINESS

Innovative New Product Development

1983 - 1999

1983

JAMES HALSTEAD LIMITED INTRODUCED POLYSAFE SLIP-RESISTANT FLOORING
This year Polyflor launched their first safety flooring, containing aggregate particles to reduce the risk of slipping in ‘wet’ areas. Polyflor has since seen extensive growth within this sector, both in the UK and international markets.
1986
JAMES HALSTEAD LIMITED LAUNCHED THE POLYSAFE STUD TILE
To provide increased choice for customers, 1986 saw our expansion into studded rubber tiles, a complimentary range to our main vinyl offering.
1989
JAMES HALSTEAD LIMITED LAUNCHED YET ANOTHER NEW FLOORING RANGE
Two new ranges of non-directional flooring - Finesse and Panache - were introduced by Polyflor, reflecting increasing demand for the ‘chip’ aesthetic.
1992
ESTABLISHED SALES OFFICE IN HONG KONG
The sales office was set up in Hong Kong to help support and build upon our successful business: not just in Hong Kong, but also in the emerging China market and other Asian markets.
PURCHASE OF POLYFLOR AUSTRALIA
In 1992, the company became directly involved in the Australian flooring market with the purchase and strengthening of the company responsible for distribution of Polyflor in Australia. Since then, the business has been further strengthened, and now includes a sales presence in all states, and warehousing in Queensland, N.S.W., W.A., and Victoria.
1993
SALES OFFICE ESTABLISHED IN EIRE
A sales office and warehouse were established in Eire to improve service to this market place.
1995
LAUNCH OF 2000
Polyflor XL 2000 (now known as 2000 PUR) was launched in this year. It was the first calendered and pressed product in the Polyflor range, bringing the benefits of a dense, closed surface to the successful marbleised products in the Polyflor range.
1996
GERMAN DISTRIBUTOR OBJECTFLOR IS PURCHASED
The Objectflor business was purchased in order to facilitate further investment in - and therefore development of - the German market. This has now advanced such that the sales and warehousing facility in Cologne is responsible for all the Central European markets.
1998
PUR REINFORCEMENT ADDED TO NON-DIRECTIONALS
Building on the success of the non-directional products launched in 1989, a polyurethane reinforcement was added to the products, providing excellent protection and facilitating a polish-free maintenance regime. Subsequently, the PUR reinforcement was added to the 2000 range and also features on Forest FX.
1999
GROUP STRENGTHENS POSITION IN WORLD MARKETS
Two acquisitions made this year include Karndean International GmbH in Germany (license for Central Europe only) and Skellerup Flooring (now Halstead Flooring Concepts Limited) in New Zealand.

Continued Strengthening of Polyflor Portfolio

2000 - today

2000

LAUNCH OF SUPRATEC BRAND
The Polysafe Astral & Design ranges launched in this year, setting the standard for easy to maintain safety floor coverings. The collection featured Supratec, the exclusively developed polymer system, providing significant and sustainable maintenance benefits and cost savings over traditional untreated products.
2001
CONTINUING EXPANSION OF LUXURY VINYL TILES
This year saw the launch of the updated Expona Art & Design collection, made up of 12 design themes and an extensive choice of colour and texture. With our JHT subsidiary fully integrated into Polyflor Ltd, a dedicated sales team was formed, reflecting the continuing expansion of the luxury tile market and its importance to Polyflor.
2002
XL PU - JUST BRILLIANT!
Twenty-four bright contemporary shades were launched to the market in 2002 in the form of the XL PU range, an attractive new addition to our marbleised offer. The range featured the added protection of a polyurethane surface treatment.
2003
VOYAGER SETS SAIL!
Polyflor Voyager, a new collection of hardwearing sheet vinyl floorcoverings specifically developed for the transport industry, was launched in this year. The launch signaled Polyflor’s commitment to increasing our penetration of this important sector.
Available in a choice of smooth and slip resistant finishes, Polyflor Voyager provides the ideal flooring solution for a wide range of applications in the transport sector.
2004
SAARFLOOR COLLECTION IMPROVES CHOICE
At Domotex 2004, the new Saarfloor rubber collection was launched, offering an extensive choice of hardwearing commercial rubber floorcoverings in a variety of surface finishes, colours and decorations.
FOREST FX – INSPIRED BY NATURE
In this year, Polyflor took further steps to expand our portfolio with the launch of our first heterogeneous vinyl sheet flooring, Polyflor Forest FX. The range features sophisticated and highly realistic wood designs such as maple, cherry, beech and oak.
2005
THE FUTURE OF SAFETY FLOORING
In March 2005, Polyflor launched 3 exciting new Polysafe floorcoverings, underlining our commitment to developing a comprehensive safety flooring portfolio.
Polysafe Corona features a multi-chip decoration and a modern palette of shades which coordinate with our smooth floorcoverings. Corona incorporates Supratec+, the second generation of our unique soil releasing polymer system, for unrivalled soil release and low maintenance performance.
Polysafe Hydro, featuring a ‘pimple’ emboss, has been designed to reduce the risk of slipping in continually wet barefoot areas.
Polysafe Ultima has been developed with increased slip resistance for demanding areas such as commercial kitchens and food processing areas.

2006
THE QUEEN'S AWARD
James Halstead Flooring was presented with the Queen's Award for Enterprise in the category of International Trade

NEW SAFETY FLOORING RANGE
Bright and vibrant colours plus all the proven performance benefits of Polysafe Standard are the hallmarks of new Polysafe Strata - the latest innovation in sheet vinyl safety floors from Polyflor. Polysafe Strata is available in 9 exciting shades, featuring a multi-coloured flake decoration.

NEW BEVEL LINE PROJECT COLLECTION
Specifically developed for major commercial projects, the new Bevel Line Project Collection of luxury vinyl tiles from Polyflor features bevel edged planks in 8 top selling standard wood effects.

2007
THE QUEEN'S AWARD - NUMBER 2!
Polysafe sheet vinyl safety flooring has been presented with the 2007 Queen's Award for Enterprise in the category for continuous product innovation and development.

2008
NEW POLYSAFE - LIKE YOU'VE NEVER SEEN BEFORE!
Launch of two excitingly different new decorative ranges - Polysafe Wood FX and Polysafe Mosaic - both ideal for front of house and traditional safety flooring applications.

2009
NEW EXPONA DESIGNED TO BE A STYLISH WINNER
Inspired by a rich variety of visual media, ranging from exotic fruit trees and reclaimed timber to modern architectural surfaces and engineered metals, the new Expona Design collection of luxury vinyl tiles is a unique and unrivalled combination of exceptionally creative design and strong commercial appeal.

2010
POLYSAFE MOSAIC PUR RAISES THE BAR IN SAFETY FLOORING MAINTENANCE
Following a multi-million pound investment in state-of-the-art equipment, Polysafe Mosaic PUR now incorporates PolysafeTM PUR, a specially engineered polyurethane reinforcement (PUR).

2010
GROUNDBREAKING POLYSAFE SUPRATEC PUR APPLIED TO FLAGSHIP SAFETY RANGES
Polyflor has raised the bar in decorative heavy-duty safety flooring to a new level by developing its class leading PUR maintenance technology on safety flooring and adding it to their flagship Polysafe Astral and Polysafe Corona ranges, so that both ranges now incorporate third generation Supratec PUR.

2010
POLYFLOR LVTS SCORE BRE A+ FIRST
Polyflor continues to lead the way in environmental progress after all five of its Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT) ranges received a positive assessment from the Building Research Establishment (BRE).
These latest BRE results are testament to Polyflor’s commitment to offer the most eco-friendly products possible and reduce the environmental impact of manufacturing vinyl flooring. Polyflor has a further 20 product ranges within its homogeneous, heterogeneous and safety product portfolio that boast individually assessed BRE A+ ratings.
2011
PEARLAZZO PUR - A WORLD OF COLOUR AT YOUR FEET
Distinctive Pearlazzo PUR is the latest homogeneous product to be launched by leading commercial vinyl floorcoverings manufacturer Polyflor.
Beneath the bold colours and modern design, hardwearing Pearlazzo PUR achieves the highest wear rating - Group T - and features Polyflor’s unique polyurethane reinforcement which is cross-linked and UV cured for optimum strength.
2011
QUEEN’S AWARD FOR POLYFLOR PARENT COMPANY
James Halstead, the Manchester-based parent company of Polyflor, has been awarded the Queen’s Award for International Trade.
James Halstead last won the Queen’s Award in 2007, for Innovation, and the International Trade Award in 2006 - since then international sales have increased by GBP55 million, a growth of 90%.

2012
SIMPLAY EASY FROM POLYFLOR
Introduction of SimpLay range following growing demand for an attractive, loose lay luxury vinyl tile product.

STICK WITH POLYSAFE ECOMAX WHEN BUDGETS ARE TIGHT
Designed to meet the needs of typical safety flooring environments, such as commercial buildings and social housing schemes, Polysafe Ecomax features the solid construction of Polyflor XL with safety aggregates to offer a specially engineered safety surface.

YOU'RE AT HOME WITH COLONIA
Launch of Colonia Flooring Collection, an affordable and design-led luxury vinyl tile range designed for the housing sector.
POLYSAFE TREADS NEW GROUNDS
Polysafe Modena PUR features a high-clarity, micro-granite appearance across 14 different shades and is available with the manufacturer’s groundbreaking Polysafe PUR (polyurethane reinforcement).

2013
EXPONA CONTROL - DESIGN ASSURED. SAFETY GUARANTEED
Expona control combines the design benefits of an LVT with the performance of a HSE compliant safety floor offering sustainable wet slip resistance.

SECURA - INNOVATIVE NEW RANGE OF LUXURY VINYL SHEET
First multi-width luxury vinyl sheet flooring range, the Secura collection has been developed to enhance interiors with designs that reflect the natural beauty of wood, stone and stylish abstract finishes.

POLYSAFE ARENA - DESIGN TRENDS WITH SAFETY ASSURED
Brand new innovative range of decorative safety flooring. Uniting the worlds of design and function, Arena offers modern, on trend designs with built in sustainable wet slip resistance.