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Romasafe Takes Out Us Award

The system, known as the Romasafe Roman Shade System, was developed by Don Hailes, the managing director of Seaford-based The Roman Empire along with an American company.

“Back in 2006 I patented an aluminium batten system to manufacture no sew Roman Blinds, the blinds still required cords so unfortunately the system didn’t take off in the States,” Hailes told WFA.

“I was contacted by a client from the States about three years ago who said he had designed a system that piggy backed my system creating a cordless no sew Roman Shade.”

“Since then we have established SPP Industries USA in conjunction with our client and set up warehousing in Wisconsin to distribute the components.” Hailes said that creating a market for the system had been a slow process due to the election and other external factors but says the recognition of WCMA award will help attract some of the larger players in the US.

“The blinds themselves utilise a Mylar [polyester resin] band instead of cords, which eliminates the choking hazard, which wraps around a roller blind tube, contained within a cassette.”

“The headrail has lift spools designed to be fitted inside the headrail itself.”

“This particular design still requires a chain to lift and lower the blind but it looks like the legislation for child safety in America is going to still allow Chain Lift Systems as they can be locked into a tensioner device to prevent choking.”

The system will be on display at the International Window Coverings Expo (IWCE) to be held March 8 – 9, 2017 in Charlotte, North Carolina with other category winners from the Awards.

Other companies with award winning entries include Coulisse, Hunter Douglas, Norman Window Fashions, QMotion, Rollease Acmeda and Somfy.

“Pairing technological advancements with on trend styles speak directly to the hard work and ingenuity of our industry’s engineering and design teams”, said Ralph Vasami, Executive Director of WCMA.

“In 2016 WCMA fine-tuned the program’s categories, particularly the judges’ criteria, resulting in a more rigorous competition. Each manufacturer raised the bar for the industry and is to be acknowledged for their contributions.”

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