On the 23rd and 24th of June 2022, the Department for International Trade is taking over the British Ambassador’s Residence in Paris to display up to 70 British companies as part of the Embassy’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. This is an opportunity for British exporters to showcase their products and services to French buyers, distributors, and other commercial contacts.
One of the companies selected for this prestigious event is Ulster Carpets, so we took the opportunity to chat to them about the companies’ long history and ambitions for the future.
1. Please can you introduce yourself and your role at Ulster Carpets?
I am Elisa El Hage and I am Contract Sales Executive based in the Paris office of Ulster Carpets.
2. Could you tell us about the history of Ulster Carpets?
We remain owned and run by the family of our founder, George Walter Wilson, who established Ulster Carpets in 1938. Since then, we have grown considerably and now operate the world’s largest Axminster factory at our headquarters in Portadown.
Within the UK we spin and dye our own wool and design and weave luxury carpets for the world’s leading hotels, casinos and cruise ships. Being the only fully integrated manufacturer of woven carpet operating entirely in the UK remains an essential element of our success.
3. Are there any key milestones in the history of your company?
This year we became one of the select few companies to be awarded a Royal Warrant, which was a particularly proud moment as it was presented during Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee year.
During nearly 85 years of business, our key milestones have been directly related to innovation. Pioneering systems such as our patented PSYLOTM weaving technology have revolutionised the industry and given us the ability to offer our customers greater levels of design freedom and colour choice.
Through continual investment in new technology we have set new standards for quality and efficiency and that forward-thinking philosophy continues to this day.
Stunning bespoke carpet designed and manufactured by Ulster Carpets for the InterContinental Paris Le Grand. Ulster worked with the world renowned Pierre-Yves Rochon on this project.
4. Why is being part of this event so exciting?
So British! : Le Meilleur du Royaume-Uni is such a unique event and we feel privileged to be included amongst some of the leading companies in the UK to be part of this showcase event.
We take great pride in the fact that, from the same site the company was founded on in 1938, we have grown to operate so successfully across the world. Our head office remains in Portadown but we have offices across the world, including in Paris.
This is a unique opportunity to illustrate our strong connections between the UK and Europe.
5. Which products have your selected to showcase at this event?
We will be focusing on our bespoke carpets and The Art of Ulster concept. Flooring offers such a large canvas and we have leading carpet designers creating artistic masterpieces for five-star hotels, world-famous casinos and prestigious cruise ships.
This concept also showcases our innovation. Thanks to our unique weaving technology, the only limit to a design is your imagination and this allows designers to enjoy complete freedom.
6. What do you hope to take away from your time in Paris?
We want to take the opportunity to meet new people and build on our existing relationships within the interior design and hospitality industries. We have always enjoyed significant levels of repeat business, with customers returning to us time and again.
We also feel that our focus on design will be welcomed in Paris – a city that the world looks to for the latest fashion and styles.
7. What does the future hold for Ulster Carpets?
We have an ongoing and significant investment programme to create and secure jobs in the UK, which, in turn, will grow our business across the world.
We have also shown our commitment to the markets we work in by establishing offices in Europe, the USA and the Middle East.
At the heart of Ulster Carpets is integrity and quality – attributes that are associated with a family run company. These are qualities that we will maintain as we continue to grow across the world.