Atlanta-based Interface Inc.‘s profits dropped significantly in 2012, but the company’s year-end report envisioned a bright year ahead thanks to projected growth in key world regions.

Net income for the year was $5.9 million on $932 million in sales, down from $38.7 million on $953 million in sales during 2011, Interface reported Feb. 14. 

A key impediment to growth was a July 2012 fire that burned down its carpet-tile factory in Australia, forcing it to temporarily ramp up production in China and Thailand to meet demand in the Asia-Pacific region. 

Asia sales were flat in the fourth quarter, and Europe was down 7 percent in U.S. dollar terms, while the Americas region posted solid growth of 8.2 percent over the prior year led by a big boost in the hospitality sector. 

The company expected profits to expand in the Americas thanks to increased sales and efforts to enact more efficient manufacturing operations. 

“We are encouraged by our prospects for 2013, particularly in the U.S., Latin America, China and Southeast Asia, where robust project activity and improving macro-environments bode well for our continued growth,” said Daniel Hendrix, chairman and CEO, in a statement. 

Asia should also benefit from improved import efficiency as Interface works to get its Australian factory back up and running. Global Atlanta reported in November that the company was considering using the opportunity to consolidate its factory and warehousing operations in one location in southwestern Sydney

The company has leased a building in Sydney that it expects to be operational by the fourth quarter of this year. 

Interface also foresees strong growth in its consumer brand, FLOR, which has 18 stores and counting. 

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As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...