SpecFinish magazine is the official publication of the Finishes and Interiors Sector, the only trade association which represent specialists in all aspects of the interior fit-out and finishes sector.

Its January edition predicts key innovations for the fit-out and commercial interiors sector in 2022, and we’re delighted that our new MT4+ MagTabs are included.

Read the article here or in full below.


Flooring technology experts IOBAC UK Ltd are highlighting the crucial role that adhesive-free flooring installation can play in improving the circularity of commercial interior projects with the launch of their new MT4+ MagTabs.

Ian Spreadborough, Co-founder and Director of IOBAC explains: ”The floor covering naturally takes centre stage in the specification process as it’s a major part of the aesthetics, with the decision as to how it is fixed to the sub-floor often left to contractors.  They may decide on traditional adhesive-based methods such as tackifiers, spray and contact adhesives.

However, when that flooring is uplifted, it’s likely to be contaminated by not only adhesive residue but also some of the subfloor to which it was adhered, meaning it’s not suitable for recovery or reuse and can’t be easily recycled.

Plus the sub-floor, often metal raised access flooring, is also contaminated, and has to be made good before the next installation, adding remedial costs for the landlord and tenants.”

This often results in floor coverings contaminated with adhesive being sent for landfill after just one use.  Research by the Changing Markets Foundation concluded that an area the size of Birmingham, UK is thrown away every year, just in carpet alone.

IOBAC’s award-winning MagTabs are clever little squares, magnetic on one side and self-adhesive on the other, used to install a wide variety of floor coverings onto magnetically receptive bases such as metal raised access flooring, whilst ensuring no contamination of the subfloor or flooring product used.

Not only are tiles locked together horizontally as per conventional floating floor solutions, but due to magnetic attraction, MagTabs also enable a strong grip in the vertical direction, ensuring tiles are secured well in place until the time comes to uplift them.

And the new next generation MT4+ MagTabs are thinner, lighter, yet stronger than ever before.  The tabs incorporate IOBAC’s patented Dual Grip technology which combines dry-tack adhesion with magnetism for phenomenal grab, even in high footfall areas.

Ian comments: “Our solutions make flooring hard to shift, yet easy to lift – with MagTabs, the flooring can be cleanly uplifted and reused or recycled, with no contamination to the access floor.

From a design perspective, this gives flooring a new agility, able to adapt quickly to today’s flexible space requirements, whether that’s rental properties, flexible work environments or pop-up retail spaces.”

The installation method has financial benefits too, with labour and material costs significantly reduced during both installation and maintenance, no remedial costs, and no need to purchase new flooring as materials can be reused multiple times.  Repairs and access to services below are easy and fast.

The system is rapidly gaining popularity, and has been used to install carpet tiles, Luxury Vinyl Tiles and woven vinyl from leading flooring brands including Milliken, Shaw Contract, Forbo, Tarkett, Desso and Bolon  in multiple commercial interior fit-out projects.

Ian concludes: “In all the hard work around waste reduction and making flooring a circular material, we urge specifiers not to forget about the installation method.

Adhesive-free installation represents a different way to think about flooring – it helps transform it from a single-use material to a flexible design element that can be re-used and re-purposed multiple times before eventually being recycled.

It represents a sustainable choice, with design flexibility and operational cost benefits added in – it is a win-win for all concerned.”

To complement the launch of MT4+ MagTabs, IOBAC have created an online “Adhesive-Free Flooring Specification Centre” designed to make specification easy for architects, designers and contractors.

The resource contains whitepapers, case studies, technical data and a downloadable “Specifier’s Guide to Adhesive-free Flooring” CPD and can be accessed at www.iobac.com/adhesive-free-flooring.