Re-Bath, the world’s largest full bathroom remodeler, first opened in a spare bedroom. Friends Highly Falkner and Kurt Kittleson graduated from college in 1979 and decided to start a commercial bathtub liner business. The company, then known as American Bathtub Liners (ABL), was formed following an extended period of research and design into the emerging liner market.
ABL received the registered trademark for AmBath, the first bathtub liner tested and approved by the Uniform Plumbing Code, in 1982; the business began to thrive. Soon, demand for ABL’s liner product spread to the residential sector. To market ABL’s successful AmBath liners to homeowners under a system built specifically for franchising, ABL developed Re-Bath in 1991.
Re-Bath is now a one-stop shop for affordable, efficient full bathroom remodels. Mark Dawson, president and CEO, now leads the company, providing support to a network of more than 250 franchises worldwide. Dawson brings more than two decades of franchise experience to Re-Bath as a former president of Glass Doctor and Mr. Rooter franchise owner.
A Better Way to Remodel
Under the direction of Dawson and his executive team, Re-Bath continues to grow its brand and footprint. The company’s growth includes major expansion of its product line; Re-Bath not only offers tub liners but also shower bases, tub and shower walls, walk-in tubs, vanities and sinks, as well as accessories.
“As technology has advanced, so have we,” Dawson notes. “We offer replacement tubs made from our patented DuraBath SSP material, a far superior option to a tub liner. Our installers remove any and all materials necessary to make our customers’ walls and flooring solid.” Each DuraBath SSP product comes with a limited lifetime warranty and is installed by a trained, qualified Re-Bath franchise.
To meet the most up to date demands of today’s homeowners and home decorating trends, Re-Bath also frequently updates its diverse line of products and services. “We’re launching a new line of colors and patterns for our franchisees in April,” Dawson notes. “We have four new colors and patterns that fall within the granite, slate and marble families. The look of those patterns from a high-definition standpoint is amazing with great clarity. If you’re looking for a beautiful bathroom at an affordable price, these products are going to wow a lot of customers around the country. Right now, a lot of people want some type of stone, whether it’s granite or slate, travertine, any kind of tile. We can provide customers with that aesthetic.”
Staying Ahead in a Challenging Market
Many in the construction industry faced obstacles throughout the recession, which have followed into the recovery. Dawson credits his relationships with both franchisees and a broad network of strategic partners and vendors to Re-Bath’s stability and continued success.
“We had an exciting 2013,” he says, “And nice double-digit growth in 2012. The home shows we’re attending confirms attendance is up, and our leads and interest in consumers at home shows are also up, which is nice to see. The consumer as a whole is still somewhat speculative about the economy. People are buying, but they’re buying smarter. Our customers perform their due diligence and spend money more wisely on remodeling projects.”
Above all else, Re-Bath is committed to satisfying each customer’s needs. “What it boils down to is customer service,” Dawson continues. “We provide quality installation at a fair price. We want to have cheerleading customers in the end who will help us build our brand by recommending us.”
Dawson and his team are devoted to the success and growth of Re-Bath. To the leadership team, that means ongoing dedication to the success of each franchise. “If they do well, we do well,” he explains. “We have business tools in place to help our franchisees operate in any type of economic situation. We focus on numbers with our franchisees to help them price products, while managing the costs of marketing and goods so they make a profit. We want to set up our franchisees to make the right decisions at the right time regardless of the economy.”
Supported by a reputation for quality, affordable bathroom remodeling and backed by a loyal team of franchisees and vendors, Re-Bath is looking forward to years of continued growth and adding new franchises to better serve its audience around the world.