With flawless finishes and functionality, Armstrong Flooring Pty Ltd creates worship-worthy surface coverings.

There’s something to be said about worshipping the floor you walk on. That “something” is likely to be all about the beauty and resilience of Australian-made Armstrong flooring. The Victoria-based enterprise has been crafting vinyl floor and wall coverings in Braeside for 50 years, and it is the only manufacturer of its kind in the nation.

“We’re a down to earth, authentic business, and our backbone has been 50 years of manufacturing in the Australian market,” said Rob McLorinan, the company’s GM for Australia and New Zealand. And it’s quite a strong backbone, indeed.

No matter where you stand—in a hospital, office, school, shop, or public space—the company’s range of custom vinyl commercial products blend unbeatable performance characteristics with thoughtful designs to make any space more functional, comfortable, and aesthetically pleasing. These tough surfaces are designed for easy maintenance, resistance to chemicals, and stand up to heavy rolling loads, gouging, and indentation.

With their Infinity line of custom vinyl sheet walling and flooring, Armstrong collaborates with interior designers in commercial spaces to create unique bespoke surfaces with imagination and colour. Their line of heterogeneous sheet products offer a selection of hues and patterns designed to meet specific space, performance, and maintenance needs.

When the look and feel of a natural wood floor is what’s required, Armstrong is there with a full line of hybrid products that look like the real thing with the easy care and durability of vinyl. From luxury vinyl plank and tile, to woven vinyl flooring and safety flooring, all of Armstrong’s commercial offerings are made to meet the demands of installers and end users. As a local manufacturer with a global pedigree, Armstrong can respond in Australia’s commercial market with unmatched speed and flexibility.

These days, the trend toward authenticity is driving commercial designers to eschew off-the-shelf products for ones that reflect their unique style and intent. “They want to leave their own mark on the design, even to the point where they will choose the little individual colours in the makeup of our product so they can match it with other internal finishes,” he explained.

When planning for the Royal Hobart Hospital, its designers collaborated with Armstrong to create custom colour palettes to carry a specific colour story throughout the hospital. “That’s a trend we're seeing a lot of and we're very lucky to be in that sweet spot. It's a differentiator that no one else has,” he stressed.

While broadly known for its commercial business, in recent times the company has made a smooth strategic slide into the residential space. “We’re a fairly young nation with a strong housing market, and there are great residential opportunities,” McLorinan said, noting that the company is developing a new distribution centre in Queensland to serve the northern states.

Advances in coating systems are helping to drive their push into the residential space. Armstrong’s proprietary Diamond 10 coating system distributes cultured diamonds throughout the coatings layer, resulting in the superior stain and scuff resistance of commercial surfaces merged with the style and comfort of flooring created specifically for home use. “There's nothing quite like it in the marketplace and we are very lucky to be the first to develop that system,” he said.

One of the hottest trends of the day is hybrid, floating luxury vinyl tile. “In my history of working in floor coverings, I’ve never seen anything move at double digit volumes for two or three years,” he admitted. It’s easy to see why: As long as the floor is flat and sound, these lock-together tiles can be installed directly atop the existing surface.

Throughout its history, Armstrong Australia has been at the forefront of evolving manufacturing best practices, and keeping a sharp eye on environmental impact. They have been recognised in awards such as the Greenhouse Gas Challenge, the Savewater Awards®, and the Keep Australia Beautiful Awards.

This year, the firm achieved zero net waste by recycling more waste than it sent to the tip. “This year, we’ll take 20 tonnes of post-industrial food grade plastic film that would normally go to the landfill, farm it from those manufacturers, granulate it, and then use it in our floor coverings,” McLorinan revealed. “When there’s a large installation, all the pieces of flooring that can't be used are collected in their own bin, brought to our plant, granulated, and turned into new flooring.”

There are 21 nationalities and native speakers of seven different languages under the Braeside roof. “We have a wealth of multigenerational history, and I really love that about our business. It very much feels like a family,” he mused. “We’re very team-oriented, customer-focused and results-driven; there's no doubt about that. ... We are humble, action oriented and optimistic. That's how we roll. To put it on Australian language, we go hard but we have a good time doing it.”