The latest industry news and analysis—across all categories—listed in chronological order, with the most recent articles first.

House of Fraser's Oxford Street store is among those for whom the new owner has agreed terms with the landlord
House of Fraser stores containing ScS concessions previously threatened by its former owner's CVA proposal have now been saved, new owner Mike Ashley has announced.

Second quarter losses widened at Natuzzi
Soft demand and a strong euro, particularly against the dollar, harmed Natuzzi in the second quarter as the upholstery giant recorded a bigger loss on lower sales.

Workplace furniture maker Orangebox has been sold to U.S conglomerate Steelcase in a deal that will catapult the Welsh company on to the world stage.

Designer Contracts' 109,000sqft central distribution facility
Privately-owned floorcoverings supplier Designer Contracts has set out ambitious plans to double in size—both sales and staff headcount—as part of a new five-year plan.

OKA trades from 14 UK stores plus two outlets
OKA Direct, the premium British furniture and interiors retailer, has made its first ever acquisition, buying a controlling stake in a family-owned Texan furniture business.

Sleepeezee's owner Adova has outlined ambitious UK plans
The newly-appointed UK boss at Sleepeezee's French owner Adova has outlined plans to put its 'under-utilised' Royal Warrant at the heart of a strategy will see it aim to double revenue within four years.

Adova, the French parent to Kent bed maker Sleepeezee, will launch Beautyrest by Simmons in Britain as part of a plan to 'disrupt the disrupters.'

Unboxing the cash situation at the emerging direct-to-consumer and wholesale mattress brand?

Steinhoff International Holdings has fleshed out plans to restructure the debts of its Steinhoff Europe AG (SEAG) business unit, lining up EY as supervisor to a company voluntary arrangement (CVA).

Harrison Spinks hopes to drive consumers towards stockists' stores
Leeds bed maker Harrison Spinks will invest £2 million on an integrated marketing campaign that will see the business advertise on national television for the first time.

Shop Direct cited a "challenged furniture and homewares market," as it recorded a steep fall in sales at Littlewoods in 2017–18. Growth elsewhere made up the shortfall.

Eve Sleep losses widened in the six months to June 30, 2018
Losses widened at mattress brand Eve Sleep in the six months to end June, the period that led to the departure of its founding CEO and its decision to pare back its international ambitions.

Condor Carpets, the Dutch floorcoverings conglomerate, has acquired Edel Carpets in a deal that includes its multi-million turnover UK operation in Yorkshire.

United Carpets Group says it invested more on marketing to prop up flaccid demand in the summer months, meaning half-year profits will be much lower than previously thought.

It seems fitting that in the same month that WorldStores is phased out as a brand by Dunelm that Argos has been named Large Online Bed Retailer of the Year.

Year-on-year home merchandise sales declined for a second straight week at John Lewis & Partners and have now climbed just once in the past 16 weeks.

DreamsTV Ad Dec 2017
Dreams was named Large Bed Retailer of the Year
National beds specialist Dreams was last night named Large Bed Retailer of the Year at the National Bed Federation's Bed Show Gala Dinner with Arighi Bianchi, Argos and Otty winning in other retail categories.

Harrison Spinks was named top large bed maker at the NBF Gala Dinner in Telford last night, with South Coast producer Millbrook claiming the prize for smaller concerns.

A second straight fall in sales contributed to South East England flooring distributor STS recording a loss last year, though management are bullish on the outlook for 2018.

HomeSense is escalating its co-located store network
Homesense, the off-price furniture and homeware retailer, is opening at least nine stores this autumn including a major escalation of co-located units with sister company TK Maxx.

Old Boot Sofas is back up and running under new ownership
Leather and velvet upholstery brand Old Boot has been acquired off liquidators by the owner of Derbyshire based manufacturer and retailer Authentic Furniture.

Decorex International, the interior design event taking place in London this week, has announced a new autumn dateline and a change of venue for next year's edition.

First UK accounts for U.S direct-to-consumer mattress business.

Tony Judge will leave after "an orderly transition"
Chief operating officer Tony Judge is leaving Headlam, Europe's largest floorcoverings distributor, sparking a search for a replacement in a reconfigured role.

Furniture Barn Doncaster is closing following the earlier shuttering of units at Sheffield and Grantham
The last of the Furniture Barn stores acquired by Lee Longlands in 2016 is closing amid a business model adjustment that sees the brand shift its focus towards its Internet operation.

Profits dipped for the second year straight at Blackburn carpet maker Cavalier with the privately owned producer citing rising raw material costs caused by weaker sterling.

Walker Greenbank has signed a licensing agreement with global retail business H&M that will see its Morris & Co brand next month diversify into the fashion sector.

Klarna has agreed to buy Close Brothers Retail Finance in a move that shifts the Swedish banking and payments business from the periphery of the furniture retail sector to its core.

The Co-op was once one of the UK's largest retailers of furniture, running dedicated stores and large departments in multi-category shops.

Profits jumped by more than half for Ulster Carpets last year as the privately-owned Portadown manufacturer made the most of a double-digit leap in sales.

Mattress imports reached record high in July
July saw record mattress imports as higher shipments and truckloads arriving from China and Poland pushed the category 10 percent higher-on-year.

Cabinet shipments from China are falling: Image: Maersk
The second half began as the first half ended for China's case goods producers, with a decline in the value of goods shipped to the UK.

Online furniture retailer and flash sales business Westwing has confirmed plans to raise €120 million via an initial public offering on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange.

Habitat's new Westfield London showroom; Photography: Dunja Opalko
Furniture retailer Habitat opens its first new standalone store in a decade today, at Westfield London. It is one of two new showrooms—the other is in Brighton—opening this autumn.

The new-look identity features a contemporary interpretation of a D that subconsciously references innovation while retaining historic signature features such as the gold colourway.
The Design Guild Mark has relaunched its brand identity as part of a move it hopes will lead to higher consumer recognition and greater resonance among new and established designers.

Andrew Perloff has acquired furniture retailer AHF
Andrew Perloff, the property investor and owner of businesses including Airsprung and Beales, has acquired furniture retailer AHF after buying out majority shareholder Central England Co-operative.

Price pressures weighed on John Lewis & Partners with the department store chain reporting a half-year negative earnings swing of nearly £67 million.

Colefax Group, the diversified fabrics and upholstery supplier, will tell shareholders today that sales are tracking forecasts thanks to growth in the United States, its largest market.

N Brown operates the JD Williams and Jacamo web businesses
N Brown Group, the shopping business behind the JD Williams and Jacamo brands, is searching for a new leader after it announced the planned departure of CEO Angela Spindler.

London Fabric takes place at Chelsea FC's Stamford Bridge stadium
London Fabric, the trade event aimed at buyers of fabrics for upholstery, beds and soft furnishings, has moved its show dates to avoid a potential fixture clash for venue host, Chelsea FC.

The Furniture Makers’ Company (FMC) has launched a free human resources toolkit as it looks to support the hiring and development of industry talent among smaller furniture companies.

Dunelm bought WorldStores for £8.5m back in 2016
Dunelm is trading online from a single web platform having closed the WorldStores website it bought late 2016 as part of a move to "simplify the business."

Stronger Italian imports offset falls from China and Poland
Year-on-year upholstery imports climbed for the first time since January at the start of the second half despite continued weakness from China, the largest single overseas source nation.

The negative home trend returned at department store chain John Lewis & Partners last week despite a record week for its contemporary own-brand House.

Carpet imports into Britain inched forward in July, bringing an end to a four-month streak of falling figures.

L&P is best known here for supply springs to the mattress market
Pocket spring maker Leggett & Platt, one of the key suppliers to Britain's bed industry, absorbed higher raw material costs as profits fell last year despite a double-digit sales bump.

Upholstery producer Whitemeadow Furniture has opened a new design and development centre at its Nottinghamshire HQ.

Browns' Davygate store in York
The company behind the Browns of York department store and others nearby has lowered its near-term debt servicing costs after consolidating borrowings.

Debenhams has substantial long-term lease commitments
Department store retailer Debenhams last night moved to reassure suppliers, staff and investors following weekend newspaper reports that sparked a sharp fall in its share price yesterday.

Rising input costs have been a recurring theme over the past two years.

Dura Beds' Batley factory
Sales and profits fell last year but West Yorkshire bed maker Dura Beds spent heavily again on production capacity and capability as it eyes expansion.

North West furniture and home improvement retailer Taskers reported a £1.1 million net loss last year as it incurred one-off costs associated with its planned restructure.

Victoria, the acquisitive carpet and flooring manufacturing and wholesale group, says underlying sales are trading ahead as it continues to yield the benefit of its new UK pricing strategy.

Sweet Dreams, the Lancashire bed maker celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, has appointed Darrell Tough as its new sales agent for Scotland.

Taskers reported a seven-figure loss in 2017–18 but there are positive signs coming from the North West business, whose ongoing restructure will complete next year.

DTC mattress brand Simba expanded in 2016–17
Mattress brand Simba Sleep invested nearly £2 for every £1 it generated in sales last year in a sign of its intent to make an impression on British and international bed markets.

Direct-to-consumer mattress business Simba Sleep has begun financing its receivables in selected European markets after agreeing a new secured line of credit late last month.

New furniture launch from Homebase
Embattled home improvement retailer Homebase has taken baby steps back into the furniture product sector with a new line of dining, living and occasional cabinets.

As The Furnishing Report suggested earlier this week, Harveys has partnered with Louise Redknapp
Furniture chain Harveys has confirmed it has partnered singer and style blogger Louise Redknapp for a new upholstery collection under the Bold by Louise brand.

Loaf's new St Albans store
Furniture retailer Loaf's physical store expansion took another step yesterday as the retailer opened its seventh showroom, in St Albans.