A Philippine tile company, known for their large stone bathroom tiles, CEBU Oversea Hardware Co., Inc. (COHCI) recently revealed their latest product range at the World Building and Construction Exposition (WORLDBEX) 2019.
The Cebu-based hardware construction and material supply company has been in operation for about 6 decades, with their tile importing operations running for about 2 decades currently.
They recently released their latest tile range, including the Spanish brand Baldocer, which offer large stone bathroom tiles and other porcelain tiles, dubbed B Plus. This collection is noteworthy due to the fact that the designs decorating them are added via inkjet technology, allowing for the creation of tiles that visually resemble marble, which makes it a cheaper alternative. These tiles are now available in COHCI’s home country of the Philippines, in sizes of 80×160 and 120×120, allowing them to be transported easily.
Baldocer Asian Market Export Director Oscar Vilar noted during a media briefing that the advent of the digital age has allowed for cheaper, more accessible alternatives to once rare and expensive materials. For the tile industry, inkjet technology allows for printing suitable designs on tiles, allowing for the creation of wood-, marble-, cement- or stone-like tiles which are cheaper, whilst looking the same as their counterparts.
Other tile alternatives, like vinyl, have not been detrimental to the sales of porcelain and ceramic tiles with the technology.
COHCI VP for Sales and Marketing says that there hasn’t been much disruption due to the fact that the demand for ceramic and porcelain tiles goes hand-in-hand with the growth of the construction industry itself, and the inkjet-based alternatives have their own market.
For example, onyx marble can be substituted with tiles that have the texture printed onto them. A square meter of onyx marble costs $500 from the quarry, while the porcelain tile alternative would cost around 20% of that.
Vilar notes that they’re able to exactly imitate materials, due in part to the fact that they use the excess from the actual material itself, compressed so that it can be used for the tiles. These tiles undergo direct pressing in order to create an even surface.
Other Spanish tile brands that the company has includes Alaplana, Cicogres and Argenta, alongside Capucino and Studio.