Being the biggest isn’t always the best position to be in. When you’re a relatively small hard surface flooring supplier looking to stake your claim with flooring retailers, it’s better to be quick and agile.
Pacific Direct Industries (PDI) uses its size “limitations” to its advantage, marketing products that fit specific needs and following that up with excellent service. “The good thing about us is we are small and can change things on the floor quickly,” said Adrian Van Raalten, vice president of sales and marketing for PDI, based in North Hollywood, Calif. “If something isn’t working, we can switch gears. We can find out what’s hot in the market and jump on it.”
What’s hot right now for PDI is its Poseidon laminate, a waterproof product it sources from China. PDI, which also supplies SPC (from China) and engineered hardwood (from Cambodia), feels the time is right for waterproof laminate. As Van Raalten noted, “A lot of people in the marketplace are not differentiating waterproof from water-resistant when it comes to laminate. Ours is waterproof—eight colors and thicknesses of 8mm and 12mm. We tested it out by putting a plank in a fish tank for two weeks. We took the plank out and couldn’t tell the difference. There were no signs of swelling or water marks. We were skeptical that the factory could actually make the product waterproof, but they did.”
PDI sells exclusively through a network of authorized retails, with 80% of its business in California, but growing steadily nationally through its full-time sales staff and out-of-state agents. “We love selling containers, and we do a lot with retailers who stock containers,” Van Raalten said. “We assume all the liability. Our factory partners are amazing; we have never had an issue. Our laminate is tried and true.”
Van Raalten said the company’s laminate push comes during a time when there is “a lot of fatigue” in the market for vinyl floors. “Retailers are having a lot of claims issues. What we’re finding is a lot of accounts won’t accept anything SPC unless it is 6.5mm or thicker.”
PDI has its own 8mm SPC coming down the pike, Viva Las Vegas, as well as three collections of engineered hardwood, including Napa Valley: 4mm wear layer in a 91/2-inch-wide format.
“We are looking for explosive growth in 2023,” Van Raalten said.
PDI’s retail customers laud the supplier for being the complete partner. “PDI is our go-to vendor for our laminate and wood flooring due to the quality of products, customer service, ease of doing business with them and, most importantly, they stand behind their product,” said Rachel Trenholm, owner, Kindred Flooring , San Dimas, Calif.
Steven Hernandez, vice president of Hernandez Wholesale Flooring, Commerce, Calif., said doing business with PDI has been a boon for his dealership. “PDI’s selection of hardwood, vinyl and laminate are tailored to our Southern California market, which make them our go-to vendor. In addition to their product, their service is superior to vendors their size.”
Likewise, Empire Hardwood Flooring & Molding, North Hollywood, Calif., has been doing business with PDI for a decade and has no complaints. “As a family-owned and operated company for 25 years we take pride in building lifelong connections and partnerships,” said Alisa Jerejian, owner. “When looking for partners to bring in we look for high-quality products, great pricing and, most importantly, customer service—and we found that with PDI. Their products are timeless, yet innovative. The overall experience working with PDI from start to finish is always effortless.”
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