The National Bed Federation will this weekend launch a six month consumer advertising campaign designed to highlight the safety, cleanliness and honesty of its members’ beds.

sharpsWardrobeUnderlying profits jumped 30 per cent at national bedroom furniture chain Sharps in 2013–14 as it made the most of new stores and above-the-line promotion.

kozeeSleepYorksDewsbury mattress and bed base manufacturer Kozee Sleep Beds has been placed into administration after a nightmare 12 months.

furnitureVillageStoreExt2015Furniture Village founder and CEO Peter Harrison says it will trade up as it implements its expansion strategy over the next five years.

Year-on-year furniture retail prices remained lower in April though the rate slowed for a third successive month, according to the Office for National Statistics.

atlanticShoppingMargins were squeezed but sales continued to gain momentum for online and warehouse furniture and furnishings retailer Atlantic Shopping in 2014.

Furniture manufacturers wanting to show at this autumn’s I Saloni Worldwide event in Moscow can cut costs after the BFM secured grant funding.

lucasAylesburyPrivately owned furniture retailer Stokers is expanding its store network with the addition of one of Britain’s largest single-site furniture businesses.

Ireland and Scotland furniture and furnishings retailer Harry Corry will pay less rent on a number of stores after all bar two of its landlords agreed a CVA proposal.

The National Bed Federation has elected Ebrahim Patel, md at Leicester manufacturer Vogue Beds, as its next president.

dreamsInterview2Interview: CEO Mike Logue shares his thoughts on production, his relationship with other Sun-backed retailers, store pilots, expansion plans and product strategy.

retailParkThe number of shoppers fell in all retail locations bar out-of-town parks in April, according to the British Retail Consortium.

Online home sales lifted 12 per cent last week to help total category revenue beat year-earlier trade at department store John Lewis.

firaTesting, calibration and advisory services provider Exova Group has acquired FIRA International owner BM Trada in a deal worth around £22m.

symphonySymphony group made the most of strong demand in 2014 with a big leap in sales, with profits further boosted by a large gain on property.

The Sleep Council says retailer demand is behind a renewed push to promote British made beds.

dreamsSolihullextCoNational beds retailer Dreams is on track to double profits in 2015 with sales continuing to trend upwards in the first four months of the year.

tescoHomeplusSupermarket giant Tesco is to close its six remaining Homeplus stores following the earlier closure of a similar number announced in January (see related).

Visitor numbers were up sharply at furniture technology and materials fair Interzum this month with international attendance behind the increase.

ukFurnitureManufacturingUK furniture exports dipped fractionally in the first quarter of 2015 despite strong demand from Ireland.

Foam based mattress supplier The Foam Company has strengthened its sales force with the appointment of Jon Baker as commercial director and two high-profile external hires.

Like-for-like retail sales slipped in April as the early timing of Easter impacted the year-on-year picture, according to stores group the British Retail Consortium.

Mail-order and online retailer Littlewoods — part of the Shop Direct Group — is to phase out its famous printed catalogue with growing online sales rendering it redundant.

The National Bed Federation says the industry needs to prepare for a time when it will no longer be acceptable for old and unwanted mattresses to be sent to landfill.

Chinese furniture importsBritain’s furniture retailers and wholesalers imported more than £220m more in the first quarter of 2015 compared with last year.

hofFurnitureOwn-brand represents close to half of all Home sales at House of Fraser after House brands grew strongly in the year to end January.

John Lewis sales climbed 2.8 per cent to £77m in the seven days to 2nd May with Home sales inching above year-earlier figures.

cfsStoreCoUpholstery and bed suppliers face hefty shortfalls following the pre-pack sale of a six-store furniture chain whose directors included the former CEO of Land of Leather.

Customer demand dropped sharply in the four weeks to 2nd May after a strong first quarter, according to sofas and carpets retailer ScS.

Yorkshire beds company Deepsleep Beds UK has been given a small fine after it pleaded guilty to breaching the Consumer Protection Act 1987.

vitafoamBritain’s bed manufacturers helped drive another top line lift at North West foam giant Vita Cellular Foams in the year to end December.

VIDA Living says it has stepped up investment in the UK market with its warehouses holding a third more stock and its delivery fleet expanding by more than a quarter.

Spinks Springs — the components arm of Leeds beds group Harrison Spinks — was an award winner as suppliers exhibition Interzum started in Cologne yesterday.

home24Sales growth escalated for pan-European ecommerce furniture retailer Home24 in 2014 though lower prices meant falling gross margin and wider losses.

Premium interior design retailer Occa-Home says it is building for significant growth by rebranding as Houseology and moving to larger premises.

Prominent BFM members were among a host of British furniture brands to show at last month’s iSaloni series in Milan, which included a BFM stand for the first time.

Bedroom furniture producer Wiemann will make its Long Point debut with the firm saying its presence is recognition of its increasing UK brand awareness.

habitatIntExtThe number of Habitat showrooms across the UK will more than double over the next 12 months under plans to escalate expansion of the mid-premium furniture and home brand.

New stores and online lifted John Lewis sales last week though a solid performance from both indoor and outdoor furniture lines helped Home sales to a 4.1 per cent rise.

Bed manufacturers, suppliers and retailers are being urged to enter the 2015 Bed Show Industry Awards, with the NBF launching the process yesterday.

alstonsFactoryAlstons — which is to be sold to management and a Thai carpet business in a deal effectively valuing it at £32m — becomes the latest in a long line of sofa company transactions this year.

johnAlstonAlstons and BFM chairman John Alston will focus full time on the concrete business once the deal to sell the family upholstery company completes in June.

Organisers of the January Furniture Show have partnered buying group SMG to add a floorcoverings showcase to the 2016 edition.

Colin Watson is stepping down as managing director at the British Contract Furnishing Association (BCFA) to return to consultancy.

ukFurnitureManufacturingPrivately owned Alstons has been sold to a joint venture comprising the existing management team and Thailand Carpet Manufacturing.

ikeaSales climbed sharply in the UK for IKEA in 2013–14 though weaker gross margin and the cost of growing its workforce hit profits.

Sofa manufacturer QFC capitalised on its significant investment expanding capacity as it returned strongly to profit in 2014.

The benefits of buying up rival carpet and flooring companies is paying off according to Victoria PLC, which says FY earnings will beat expectations.

Andy Harrison has been named chairman at home and furniture chain Dunelm, taking over from Geoff Cooper who retires later this summer.

Membership has swelled at industry trade association FIRA since January with the addition of 16 companies spanning established and new firms across the furniture supply chain.

relyonBensonsRelyon sales to third party stockists were broadly flat in 2013–14 with sales to other Steinhoff owned businesses rising by close to half.

Retail chain Magnet grew strongly in the first quarter buoyed by demand for kitchens at the lower end of its consumer price bracket.

Belgium headquartered textiles group Bekaert — supplier to many UK mattress manufacturers — has been sold by one investment group to another.

westwingNowMembers-only home retailer Westwing is launching a dedicated ecommerce furniture and décor store as it looks to take sales past €200m in 2015.

CASA — Italian for Home — is the name for Devon retailer Queenstreet Carpets & Furnishings’ soon-to-open second showroom (see related).

bedworldThe £10m privately owned ecommerce business behind the Bedworld and Saso mattress, beds and furniture websites has ceased trading.

furnitureQueueFurniture retailers ended the first quarter in rude health with strong March sales and an upwards revision for February, according to official data.

Department store retailer John Lewis has rebranded its B2B arm with a renewed focus on selling furniture and furnishings to trade customers.

actonaOwnersDanish furniture retail group Lars Larsen has acquired a majority stake in circa £100m furniture supplier Actona for an undisclosed sum.

lazboyUkRevenue pushed towards £50m at Colne upholstery supplier Furnico through 2013–14 though weaker gross margin meant profits growth was more modest.

bensonForBedsSteinhoff is steering funds towards developing Harveys’ online business after doing similar for its Bensons for Beds chain paid dividends last year.

Department store chain House of Fraser enjoyed profitable growth in the year to end January, buoyed by rising Internet orders.

comfyQuiltsStrong demand took the top line at bedding giant Comfy Quilts past £80m in 2013–14 though the North West supplier’s profits continued to be hit by legacy issues.

Carpetright says full year profits will be ahead of expectations after it traded strongly in the final three months of its financial year.

Furniture and home retailer IKEA wants to raise its multichannel profile by highlighting the different ways in which consumers can buy its merchandise.

somnusYorkshire beds and components group Harrison Spinks posted record group sales and profits in the year to end June.

Industry backed promotional body The Sleep Council is calling on beds retailers to back its new marketing campaign which starts 1st May.

The future of the high street, instore technology and brand power will be among the retail themes of the Conference and Seminar Programme at next month’s May Design Series.

debenhamsOnlineDepartment store chain Debenhams has overhauled and expanded its online furniture microsite to put trends at the heart of the way product is merchandised.

Value retailer JYSK is entering the Singaporean market in partnership with a name synonymous with UK furniture retailing.

ligneRosetFrench furniture brand Ligne Roset’s UK arm moved back into profit after enjoying strong growth in the year to end September.

Furmanac — the West Midlands motion furniture manufacturer behind the Mi-Bed and Mi-Chair brands — maintained its sales momentum in the year to end June.

discounting 1Furniture retail price deflation narrowed in March despite the earlier fall of Easter and its associated bank holiday promotions.

retailParkMarch looks odds-on to continue furniture’s double-digit growth trend as the category top scored in the British Retail Consortium’s monthly retail sales survey.

Thousands of furniture and design professionals trooped through the doors of the Fiera Milano showgrounds at Rho yesterday for day one of the 2015 iSaloni series.

cousinsDudleyFurniture independent Cousins’ product sourcing strategy paid off in 2013–14 as it made the most of a 160 basis point upswing in gross margin.

Two of Britain’s furniture ecommerce specialists are among a list of eight competing for the main prize at the Tech & Ecommerce Awards 2015.

lauraAshleyLaura Ashley said furniture like-for-likes inched up in the year to end January though overall category sales declined as it closed space dedicated to Home products.

Rent-to-own furniture and electricals chain BrightHouse says it wants to double store numbers to 600.

Department store retailer Debenhams has named Terry Duddy — former Argos CEO — as a non-executive director.

parkerKnollMontanaThe group behind the Parker Knoll, G Plan Upholstery and Duresta sofa businesses says it has laid the platform for substantial growth in 2014–15.

UK and Ireland furniture distributor VIDA Living says growing its international business will help it increase investment and reduce product cost.

Andrew Porter is investing £200k as part of a refurbishment programme at its purpose-built furniture warehouse headquarters in the North of England.



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