The MMFA – Multilayer Modular Flooring Association, which had been founded at the end of October 2012 only, is taking up its operational work full of vim and vigor. At its first working session on 28 February and 1 March in Munich seven new members were welcomed to the association. After two more companies that joined in early May, the number is now up to 17 with five European countries represented. – And there are more in the pipeline.
The MMFA is getting up to speed quickly: As at Domotex 2013 the MMFA had counted eight ordinary members: Akzenta (Classen Group, Kaisersesch/Germany), Hamberger (Stephanskirchen /Germany), Kronoflooring (Lampertswalde/Germany), Li&Co (Müstair/Switzerland), Meisterwerke (Rüthen/Germany), Parador (Coesfeld/Germany), Skema (Treviso/Italy) and Windmöller Flooring Products (Augustdorf/Germany).
On 1 March the number of fellow campaigners had already risen to 15: In Munich Amorim Revestimentos (S. Palo Oleiros/Portugal) joined the MMFA as an ordinary member. Homag Holzbearbeitungssysteme (Schopfloch/Germany), Interprint (Arnsberg/Germany) Schattdecor (Thansau/Germany), Selit Dämmtechnik (Erbes-Büdesheim/Germany), Sekisui Alveo (Luzern/ Switzerland) and Surteco (Buttenwiesen-Pfaffenhofen/Germany) were approved as extraordinary members. Extraordinary members represent the supply chain of multilayer, modular floorings or can be stakeholders of the sector in general. Now the entries of Egger (Wismar/Germany) and 2D Holding GmbH (Heroldstatt/Germany) to the association in early May have increased the number to 17. Further inquiries of companies for an MMFA membership are in the process of approval.
Matthias Windmöller, MMFA Chairman of the Board states: “The pleasantly high number of new members achieved in such a short period confirms the demand within the sector for a diversified representation of interests. In the light of the progress in product development and the signs of a positive trend of the market for multilayer modular floorings we will further boost our acquisition. We want to bring all relevant European players on board as soon as possible, and thus establish a strong network within the sector and actively shape the successful development of our products.” This is one of the reasons why the MMFA attended the congress fair for innovative materials “Innomateria” from 14-15 May, coinciding with Interzum in Cologne.
Standardization work for new products
The newly formed working committees „technology“ and „market development“ started their operation in March in Munich. The „technology“ WC under the joint convenorship of Edwin Lingg (Li&Co, Müstair/Switzerland) and Volker Kettler (Meisterwerke, Rüthen/Germany) is engaged in standardization work and all issues concerning measuring values, dimensional tolerances, application, laying techniques and in the future also the continuous exchange of opinions and experiences with stakeholders of the sector. Furthermore the prospect is also the promotion of the sustainability principle within the relevant sector.
Volker Kettler summarized the opinion of the attendees: There should be made an application at the upcoming meeting of the official standardization committee, in order to change the drafted nomenclature term “MSF” into “MMF” in the title of the DIN EN 16511 standard (German version: prEN 16511). Currently the term used is “Loose-laid panels – Multi-layer semi-rigid floor covering (MSF) panels with wear resistant top layer.” In the future it should be: “Loose laid panels – semi-rigid multilayer modular floor covering (MMF)“.
Furthermore a clear differentiation shall be made regarding specific tests and requirements depending on the product build-up. Also the integration of various quality levels for underlay materials in floating systems shall be considered. At the end of March convenor Volker Kettler has submitted the results of the discussion panels to the mirror committee for discussion in Berlin.
The second working committee “market development“ deals with the communication of MMFA‘s activities. Furthermore, the public shall get information on the products of the young sector quickly. Comprehensive information and advice are regarded as necessary in order to establish these innovative flooring products successfully on the market as an independent “type” in addition to cork floors, laminate, parquet or fully resilient floor coverings.
A further sphere of action will be the implementation of regular sales statistics in several categories. In Munich the members agreed upon a collection in this regard. The convenor for the working committee “market development“ will be appointed at the follow-up meeting, where the members will also define the modalities of communicating the statistics within and outside of the association.
The next major MMFA event shall be the first ordinary members’ meeting in fall 2013. The exact date will be announced in due time. Interested enterprises of the sector are of course welcome to attend this meeting.
Companies that are entered in the commercial register of their particular country and manufacture and sell the multilayer modular floor coverings with decorative surfaces on their own responsibility, may become ordinary members. The company domicile and production facilities must be located in Europe. However, also material producers, suppliers, system partners or testing and research institutes for the equipment operating for the sector are granted access. They may apply for an extraordinary membership with an advisory vote but without a voting right at the assemblies. They are entitled for the full participation opportunities in all working bodies and project groups of the MMFA plus the right to raise their voices at the association’s general assembly.
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