Product Trends: The Faucet Market
Matco-Norca hired industry veteran Fred Grewen in July 2009 as Director of Faucets and Plumbing Specialties to refine its faucet and plumbing specialties program. That task has been completed, and Supply House Times questioned Grewen about its particulars, along with his insights into the faucet market in general.
Supply House Times: What has changed within the new Matco-Norca faucet program?
Grewen: The existing Matco-Norca faucet program has undergone a complete facelift. We had a solid program, but it wasn’t structured in a way that was conducive toward seriously competing in the residential new construction segment.
We now offer common rough-in valves on all of our tubs and showers, three-hole roman tubs and four-hole roman tubs. All of our families will now be complete and provide a common valve message, while five out of our seven families will offer ceramic valve technology.
We also offer WaterSense-certified lavatories in all seven families in addition to select showerheads. We have transitioned to a lead-free format across all families in order to comply with the changes that we believe are imminent over the next few years, and every family comes complete with ADA-compliant options for applications that specify this requirement.
We have also added a new family that targets the entry level to mid-price point builder. This family, “Builder Light,” features several configurations that will allow for the builder to provide upgrades at an aggressive price point without compromising quality, style or margins. Also, we now offer a Limited Lifetime Finish and Function Warranty.
In late October we launched our new program that features seven families, ranging from our entry level “Value Engineered” offering up to our high-end contemporary showroom grade “Padova” family. Two of our families, Positano and Crescendo, have undergone a complete redesign in order to enhance the styling and overall value to our customers.
We will also be launching a “Build Your Own” tub and shower program. This program will allow customers to build a configuration that’s important to them and not limit the offering to what comes in the box.
Supply House Times: How do you expect the new faucet program changes to impact Matco-Norca?
Grewen: We listened to our customers and implemented drastic improvements across the board. We invested in deep inventories at our four strategically placed distribution centers. We have trained our 26 world-class rep agencies on the features, functions and benefits of our new program. Now it is time to have fun selling in new market segments that we’ve never fully participated in before the launch of this program.