Eva Kaiser, founder of Evalution Flooring, is intent on paving the way for a sustainable decor industry in South Africa through her business - the first luxury vinyl tile (LVT) flooring supplier in the country with a GreenTag certification.
Like many other businesses, hers was hit hard by the Covid-19 lockdown, but her outlook remains positive that the “new normal” will bring about some exciting changes.
We asked Kaiser to share with us more about her business and its green ethos, where her passion for sustainability stems from, and what makes Evalution Flooring proudly South African.
Eva Kaiser, founder of Evalution Flooring
Tell us a bit about how you got your business off the ground and into the success it is today?
Eva Kaiser: In 2006 I saw a gap in the market for clients needing product from various suppliers and started the business as a flooring broker. It made the customer’s life so much easier to just speak with one person and we did all the sourcing on their behalf. What started as tiles and mosaics only has grown into LVT which is now our core business which we import, vinyl sheeting and sports flooring, ceramic and porcelain tiles, mosaics and natural stone.
Describe for us some of the green processes involved in producing Evalution Flooring products.
Kaiser: Only our Amtico and mFlor products are GreenTag certified and to achieve this incredible certification, the factories need to prove that non-toxic products are used, water is saved, and the product is recycled wherever possible. We’ve taken it one step further by finding a company here in SA called R4A Waste Management that can recycle our vinyl offcuts into pavers and hopefully bricks in the new future.
What does having GreenTag certification mean for Evalution Flooring?
Kaiser: We are proud to have a product with a GreenTag certification attached as it means our factories and suppliers have done everything they can along the chain to ensure that there is minimum impact on the environment with producing our products.
Where does your passion for building a green brand and contributing to a greener home decor industry come from?
Kaiser: My passion came from watching the video with the straw being pulled from the turtle’s nose in-and-around 2015. A bizarre place for it to start, but that’s what hit home, and since then I’m constantly trying to find ways to have minimal impact on our environment. We are recycling offcuts of our Amtico and mFlor LVT from site (where possible and the contractor returns them to us). We are also branding a new biodegradable cleaning product which will also have a body and hand wash product.
In our office, we also re-use packaging where possible, alternatively it’s recycled. We’ve started asking suppliers to refrain from using exorbitant amounts of plastic to package samples. Our staff also need to recycle and use our biodegradable cleaning products at home – it’s a non-negotiable.
How has your business been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdowns?
Kaiser: Like most business, it’s been a disaster. The beginning of the year is always slow due to the festive season and builders only really start building during Feb / March. So to be shut down for what is normally a busy time of year, it will take a while to recover, however I’m ever positive that we will recover. It’s just a matter of time on how long we’ll feel the pinch. I do feel rather blessed as well as we’ve received orders and support out of nowhere and we’re so grateful for every order we receive – no matter how small.
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