Commenting on the results, Daniel K. Frierson, chairman and chief executive officer, said, “The second quarter was one of strong performance both residentially and commercially. Dixie had a year-over-year sales improvement of 26% with sales growth in all areas of the business.
Our sales growth in the residential business was 27% as compared to the same period a year ago. We believe the residential market grew during the quarter in the high single digits with the market strengthening as the quarter progressed.
It appears that the residential carpet market is now being positively impacted by the increase in the housing sector that began in 2012. Sales for our commercial products increased 21% versus the second quarter of 2012. This increase was in comparison to the commercial market being up only slightly in our estimation.
“Our continued growth in excess of 20% in 2013 is a result of the investments we have made over the last several years in new products and sales coverage. The residential growth was a combination of strong results in our mass merchant area, continued growth of our Stainmaster TruSoft and SolarMax products, strength in our wool business and momentum gained from the integration of the Gulistan products purchased late last year.
The shift to softer products, as demonstrated by the growth of our Stainmaster TruSoft products, continued throughout the quarter. In addition, the success of our high performance Stainmaster SolarMax products has led us to expand manufacturing capacity to fulfill rising demand.
Sales for all of our residential brands were up for the quarter and all retail channels are showing strength early in the third quarter. In the commercial market, we had growth in both our modular carpet tile and broadloom product categories. Our market strength in the store planning sector was of particular note during the quarter.
The response to our SPEAK modular carpet tile and FIT office remodel collections has been very favorable. These high performance products give us added breadth in our line and fulfill the need for high styled modular and broadloom carpet products in today's market.
We implemented the planned expansion of both our residential and commercial sales forces in the first half of the year to give us more strategic focus in select markets. Avant Contract, our newest commercial brand, launched its first series of products during the quarter.
The Avant Contract brand is primarily focused on the fastest growing commercial segment, the modular office market. The initial impressions of Avant's edgier use of patterns, textures and colors combined with the marketing campaign promoting local and regional Artisans is being well received by the Architectural and Design community.
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