When you think of a company's heritage you think of a company's values and more importantly its people. It has been Dixie people throughout the years who have made Dixie what it is today. Dixie Chairman Dan Frierson said it best in his1998 annual report letter to shareholders and associates: "The products a company makes are not as important as the people a company helps build."
Dixie has earned a heritage of being a people-based company. This value is instilled in everyone who joins the company and is quickly apparent to all newcomers. It is continuously reemphasized in the company's leadership training called the Leadership Legacy, an ongoing commitment to developing leaders at every level of the company. The program is built on Dixie's stated values, encourages ownership and accountability and promotes the acceptance of and the need for change. It is driven to benefit our associates individually as well as each of our customers.
The Dixie Group began in 1920 as the Dixie Mercerizing Company headquartered in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Mercerized cotton, long popular in England because of its silk-like luster, was not then widely used in the United States.
The company's business philosophy of manufacturing specialized products for select market segments continues to drive Dixie's business strategy. Specialized apparel and industrial yarns soon made room for Dixie's entry into the high-volume tufting yarn market and a new name change for the company in 1965 to Dixie Yarns Inc.
In the late eighties, the textile industry was facing its toughest times due to stiff foreign competition, changing markets and the requirements for heavy investment in modernization of facilities. Dixie began a restructuring plan that included selling, closing or consolidating those facilities that did not fit its strategic plan for the future.
In conjunction with the restructuring plan, Dixie began diversifying into the carpet industry and made its first major carpet acquisition, Carriage Carpets, in 1993. In 1999, Dixie sold its remaining traditional textile operations and began operating solely as a floorcovering company.
In 2003 we sold our broadloom carpet, needlebond and carpet recycling operations that served the factory-built housing, indoor/outdoor and carpet pad markets. Our business is now concentrated in the higher-end segments of the soft floorcovering markets where we have been more successful and have greater growth potential.
The Dixie Spinners baseball team dominated the Chattanooga area amateur sports in 1929-1930.