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This month: In bed with Savoir FIRA’s latest statistical digest Espritmeuble’s spirited performance

The essential guide to the UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade

February 2016

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“The second edition of the January Furniture Show did not fail to impress – the industry displaying its innate capability for innovation, originality and evolution”

Comment February brings with it an ideal opportunity for reflection, with the industry’s largest and most significant UK event – the January Furniture Show – over for another year. The second edition of the show since the takeover from Interiors UK certainly did not fail to impress – the industry displaying its innate capability for innovation, originality and evolution. The event’s growth was clear to see in the five halls encompassing around 450 exhibitors in total – as opposed to three halls and just over 300 industry names last year. In addition, the extended four-day duration of the show was undoubtedly a necessity for both exhibitors and visitors. Quality worked in tandem with the increased size of the show, and it appeared in abundance. A wide-reaching range of products covering the whole industry spectrum, teamed with new features such as a flooring showcase and impressive, original exhibitor stands made for a memorable and inspiring event. What’s more, The Furniture Awards identified some of the best new products launched at the show. Think Rugs won the Value Category for its Hong Kong design, Bentley Designs’ Cadell range

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won the Mid-level Category – with Gallery Direct’s Wycombe range as the runner-up – and Nicoletti Home’s Allure sofa won the Upperlevel Category, beating runner-up Collins and Hayes’ Brooke sofa. Our upcoming March issue will feature a full review of the January Furniture Show. As for this month’s issue, you’ll find my interview with Savoir Beds’ founder Alistair Hughes, Paul Farley’s review of Paris’ Espritmeuble fair, Yard Sale Project’s Cubrick cabinet featured in our In Design article, plus much more. I hope you enjoy the issue!

Victoria Noakes

Victoria Noakes, deputy editor T 01424 776105 E victoria@gearingmediagroup.com Twitter @Victoria_FNmag

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e. enquiries@manchesterfurnitureshow.com t. +44 (0)20 8387 1270

manchesterfurnitureshow.com

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CONTENTS

This month: In bed with Savoir FIRA’s latest statistical digest Espritmeuble’s spirited performance

February 2016

5

7 Partner Comment

INFORMATION

The essential guide to the UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade

|

www.furniturenews.net

Nick Davison, portfolio director of Spring Fair, discusess the rise of the increasingly savvy consumer

16 News Prodigy by Panacea

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The Prodigy collection by Panacea (www. panaceafurniture.co.uk)

Editor Paul Farley 01424 776101 paul@gearingmediagroup.com Twitter @FurnitureNewsED Deputy editor Victoria Noakes 01424 776105 victoria@gearingmediagroup.com Twitter @Victoria_FNmag Advertising manager Sam Horscroft 01424 776100 sam@gearingmediagroup.com Twitter @FurnitureNewsAD Deputy advertising manager Trisha Fletcher 01424 776100 trisha@gearingmediagroup.com Production manager James Ash 01424 775304 james@gearingmediagroup.com Deputy production manager Katie Bate katie@gearingmediagroup.com Production assistant Stephanie Reading stephanie@gearingmediagroup.com Proofreader Keith Fitz-Hugh Editorial director John Legg 01424 776104 john@gearingmediagroup.com Twitter @extralegg Publisher Nigel Gearing Accounts Wendy Williams 01424 774982 wendy@gearingmediagroup.com Subscriptions subscriptions@gearingmediagroup.com Annual Subscription Rates UK-£65 Europe-£85 RoW-£95

24 Interviews

Victoria Noakes speaks to Savoir Beds founder Alistair Hughes, and Suki Cheema stars in this month’s Clickthrough interview

28 Events

Savoir Beds (24)

Paul Farley reflects on his trip to Paris’ Espritmeuble event, and Meble Polska features in February’s Fair Comment article

34 Resources

Colin Watson, former MD of the BCFA, examines the impact of consistent brand beliefs, plus FIRA’s Dr Peter Beele reports the results of the organisation’s recent statistical digest, and single-source insurance company Fortegra’s Kevin Cundiff presents the sales practices to ditch in 2016

40 Profiles

Espritmeuble (28)

Featuring an in-depth look at Besp-Oak and Kettle Interiors’ recent offerings

52 Living Room

Repro, print and distribution Acorn Web Offset Ltd Gearing Media Group Ltd 4 Red Barn Mews, High Street Battle, East Sussex TN33 0AG ISSN No: 1475 - 3731

64 Beds & Bedroom

© Gearing Media Group Ltd 2015 General information No part of this publication may be reproduced without the specific prior written agreement of the Publisher and may not be stored on any type of retrieval system. Furniture News/ Gearing Media Group Ltd accepts no responsibility for variations in colour reproduction. Special colours (Pantone etc) can be catered for with prior arrangement. Some elements of the editorial content in this publication are submitted by the trade, however, all efforts are made to ensure that the editorial remains true to fact and unbiased. Monies may have been accepted to offset the costs of colour reproduction. Gearing Media Group Ltd reserves the right to alter without prior notice any content other than customers’ advertisements. No correspondence will be entered into regarding altered or adjusted editorial content. The editor’s decision is final. All material submitted for inclusion in Furniture News is done so entirely at the owner’s risk and no responsibility is accepted for the safekeeping or return thereof.

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74 Dining Room 80 Designer

Yard Sale Project’s Cubrick cabinet is put under the spotlight in this month’s In Design article

Yard Sale Project (80)

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15 11:54

PARTNER COMMENT | 7

Media Partners

Furniture News enjoys partnerships with a wide range of key global and national institutions and exhibitions, and invites a spokesperson from each to share their views each month … EXCLUSIVE UK MEMBER

OFFICIAL MEDIA PARTNER

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Furniture News supports the aims and objectives of ACID (Anti Copying In Design) which is committed to fighting intellectual property theft

Consumer driven “Never before in our industry has the consumer been more knowledgeable, with expectations as high as they are today” Retailing has never been more competitive, and everyone is searching for ways to stay ahead of the game, through savvy marketing and PR solutions, the latest technology and brilliant creative merchandising. We are increasingly seeing that today’s most successful independent retailers have learnt that to win new customers – or sell more to existing ones – it is vital to add new ranges, products, promotional events or services. Thinking out of the box when extending their offering can help independents build business in unexpected ways, strengthen customer loyalty and provide real points of difference from competitors. It sounds obvious from a business perspective, but it’s surprising how many retailers don’t really understand the potential of their local consumer base. Some of the most inspirational and successful independents I know of are constantly evolving and making sure they always have something new and interesting to offer. There are different ways of going about this. For example, the content theatres at Spring Fair and social media sites like Instagram and Pinterest can yield invaluable insights about trends that can be adapted to suit a local consumer base. Retailers who may not have a prime spot on the high street can encourage footfall by holding promotional events and advertising them locally, through community Facebook pages and smart signage. When it comes to the actual merchandise, we’re seeing more and more retailers moving out of their traditional areas of expertise and charting new territory. Oliver Bonas – a recipient of Spring Fair’s Buyers Power List Award – has blazed a trail in this area, mixing up clothing and fashion accessories with homewares in key locations, at the same time as more and more retailers get to grips with the fact that modern consumers want all-round lifestyle solutions. Today’s consumers also want multichannel retailing. The latest gadgets like iPhones and tablets are not just status symbols, they are frequently the primary means by which people organise their lives. A busy professional wants to gather news and browse products on their mobile phone during their morning or evening train commute, to compare prices in store, click and collect their orders and make the most of special offers. Never before in our industry has the consumer been more knowledgeable, with expectations as high as they are today. The retailers that can fulfil the consumer desire for instant (usually online) gratification so often wins the day, although I also maintain that fantastic in-store customer service is very hard to beat when it comes to building loyalty. Independents should aim to be essential destinations and trusted providers for the shoppers of today.

Nick Davison is the portfolio director of Spring Fair, Europe’s largest home and gift trade fair, which next takes place at the Birmingham NEC from 7-11th February (www.springfair.com).

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2016

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Home In


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Home Inc. Premium Indoor Furniture for the Trade - Exclusive Designs - Fully Assembled - Free Delivery on Orders Over £1,500 - Free Next Day Collection from our Warehouse - Direct Containers Option Thank you to all the visitors to our stand at the January Furniture Show at the NEC, which helped make it a fantastic success. For those who weren’t able to make it we have transferred the whole stand to our warehouse. Please contact Alistair on: 0800 772 0807 or info@homeinc.co.uk to arrange a visit!

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NEWS Retail

The future of Furniture Sale of Home Retail Group appears imminent Home Retail Group has received an approach from fair prices, through an integrated, multichannel Barn outlined proposition.” Sainsbury’s has until 2nd February to J Sainsbury plc for the potential acquisition of the Administrators at FRP Advisory has confirmed that trading continues across each of Furniture Barn’s seven retail store outlets – in Thurrock, Market Harborough, Grantham, Sutton Coldfield, Kidderminster, Doncaster and Sheffield. The group also continues to operate a warehouse in Corby and a storage facility in Market Harborough. The joint administrators have granted a six-month operating licence to a new company, The Furniture Barn 2016 – run by directors Nigel Hickman, a former director of Furniture Barn Market Harborough, and Terry Maywood – which will continue operations for that period across the business and ensure retail trading continues as normal for both customers and suppliers across the retail stores. The Furniture Barn 2016, intends to close the Sutton Coldfield and Thurrock stores this month. The Furniture Barn has operated with more than 100 staff since it entered administration in December, and has continued to trade as normal. The closures and further reductions will result in a total of 45 job losses, with a further 14 jobs lost with the closure of the two retail outlets.

Marks & Spencer CEO to step down After six years in the role, Marc Bolland is to retire as CEO of Marks and Spencer Group. He will be succeeded by Steve Rowe, executive director of general merchandise, on 2nd April. Steve has been with the group for over 25 years. Last July, he was appointed executive director, general merchandise, with a mandate to improve the overall performance of that business. Group chairman Robert Swannell says: “Over the last six years Marc Bolland has led Marks & Spencer through a period of necessary change. “Over this time, the company has made significant investment in enhanced infrastructure and capabilities. “It is now positioned for a digital age, with its own online platform and dedicated ecommerce distribution centre, improved design and sourcing capabilities in general merchandise and an industry-leading track record of growth and innovation in the food business. Marc has put Plan A at the heart of the business and leaves a strong sustainability legacy. “Steve Rowe has a deep knowledge of Marks & Spencer and a proven track record of delivering results in key parts of the business. The nomination committee was unanimous in supporting Steve’s appointment in the light of his considerable knowledge of the business and its people, his appetite to continue the process of change – particularly in general merchandise – his perceptive and effective problem solving, his values and his observed leadership.“ The announcement came as the retailer reported an “excellent” Q3 for food, a significant increase in general merchandise gross margin, yet “disappointing” general merchandise sales (-5.0%, like-for-like -5.8%) due to “unseasonal conditions and availability”.

group. Last month, Sainsbury’s confirmed that it had made an offer to purchase the group – owner of the Argos, Homebase and Habitat brands – in November, but the offer was rejected. “Over the last year, Sainsbury’s has been working in partnership with Home Retail Group, trialling a number of Argos concessions in Sainsbury’s stores,” stated Sainsbury’s. “The board of Sainsbury’s believes the combination of Sainsbury’s and Home Retail Group is an attractive proposition for the customers and shareholders of both companies, establishing a platform for longterm value creation. “The combination is an opportunity to bring together two of the UK’s leading retail businesses, with complementary product offers, focused on delivering quality products and services at

make a formal offer. It later emerged that Home Retail Group had been talking to Australian conglomerate Wesfarmers regarding the sale of Homebase, and that the sale, pending shareholder approval, would go ahead for £340m. Wesfarmers said it will spend a further £242m to build the Homebase business, under its own DIY brand, Bunnings. The future of the Habitat brand was not clarified. The latest trading statement, which covered the 18 weeks from 30th August 2015 to 2nd January 2016, noted “mixed” trading results for Argos, at which total sales increased 0.9%, “affected by volatile trading patterns” and “the continuing effects of price deflation”. Like-for-like sales decreased 2.2%.Homebase like-for-like sales grew by 5% while total sales declined by 4%.

Head appointed to John Lewis Leeds James Prince will become head of branch at its department store in Leeds, set to open this autumn. John Lewis will invest £37m in the 255,000ft2 department store, which will be one of the largest outside London. James, currently head of branch at John Lewis Sheffield, will lead a team of 550. The retailer will be the anchor tenant of the Victoria Gate development in Leeds’ Victoria Quarter. The department store frames the scheme and is a major entrance to Leeds’ retail core from the eastern side.

ScS appoints new CFO Chris Muir will join retailer ScS as chief financial officer and an executive board director on 4th April. The appointment follows the decision by Ron Turnbull, current CFO, to step down from the board and resign from the company. Chartered accountant Chris joins from Northgate plc, one of Europe’s leading specialists in light commercial vehicle hire, where he has worked in various roles since 2003. For the year ended 30th April 2015, Northgate announced revenue of £614m and profit before tax of £83m.

Victoria Plum buyer moves to Matalan Direct Craig Hadley, Victoria Plum’s former head of buying, has joined online-only home furniture brand MatalanDirect.com as buying director. Having being instrumental in leading Victoria Plum to unprecedented growth, Craig has been appointed to oversee strategic category onboarding for the new online home brand. Prior to working with Victoria Plum, Craig was the buying manager for Globe Union/PJH Group, one of the world’s largest suppliers of plumbing products, and PJH Europe’s largest bathroom and kitchen supplier and distributor. Craig comments: “This is an exciting role to take on as MatalanDirect.com has fantastic potential to become one of the leading online home retailers in the UK. With over 12.5 million loyal customers and supported by the powerhouse of Matalan on the high street, the future looks bright for the brand.”

Craig Hadley

Leekes continues to make headway Leekes Retail & Leisure Group reports significant sales and profitability growth in both the year to 31st March 2015 and in the eight-month post yearend trading period to 30th November 2015. The group achieved a £1.6m improvement in profitability in the year to 31st March, achieving an EBITDA of £3.8m. The first eight months trading of the 2015-16 financial year has shown continued improvement, resulting in the group already exceeding the previous year’s full-year profit position with an EBITDA of £4.5m – 55% up. The retail business delivered 6% like-for-like sales growth, leading to substantial improvements

in profits. Strong performances were seen in conservatories, windows and doors, kitchens and bathrooms and furniture and furnishings. Retail MD Emma Leeke says: “We have continued to make a significant investment in our retail business in recent years with the opening of our new flagship store in Coventry in 2012, a £1m modernisation programme at our Cross Hands store as well as the refurbishment of our kitchen and bathroom studios in all stores. We are delighted to see that this continuing investment, coupled with improving economic conditions, is having a significant effect on our sales and profitability.”

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NEWS Events

Fabric event returns to Increase in exhibitors and visitors Chelsea Football Club boosts Frankfurt fabric show The BFM-sponsored London Fabric Show, taking place from 29th February to 1st March, will bring together 31 international and British fabric manufacturers in the executive boxes of Chelsea FC. The variety of fabrics, synthetics and leathers on show will encompass wools, jacquards, chenilles, velvets, tweeds, mattress ticking, backing fabrics, curtain lining, high-performance polyester fabrics, graded leathers, cottons and linens. Many of the manufacturers offer buyers the opportunity to customise their choice, and offer exclusive designs and colourways. Companies from the UK including Abraham Moon & Sons, Flameproofings and British Velvets will exhibit alongside companies from Belgium including Ter Molst, Symphony Mills, Annabel Textiles, Muvantex and Green Street Textiles, together with Boyteks Textiles and Adoksan from Turkey, and Prostex from Italy. Jackie Bazeley, MD of the BFM, says: “This year’s London Fabric Show is a third bigger than last year, with more well known fabric manufacturers and suppliers exhibiting. This show is growing in stature, and its value to UK fabric buyers for both contract and domestic markets is not to bee underestimated. It is a great opportunity for UK buyers to see a huge array of different fabrics and designs together in one place.” W bfm.org.uk/londonfabric2016

International trade fair for home and contract textiles, Heimtextil, which took place last month in Frankfurt, recorded an increase in the number of exhibitors and visitors – over 69,000 trade visitors (67,861 in 2015) and 2866 exhibitors (formerly 2723). Detlef Braun, CEO of organiser Messe Frankfurt, says: “The world of textile interior design came to Frankfurt, and the increase in exhibitors and visitors alike speaks for itself. The positive economic indicators also boosted discussions between suppliers and purchasers. Heimtextil has thus impressively consolidated its position as the top global meeting place for the industry.” As was the case last year, 68% of trade visitors attended from abroad. There was an increased

number of visitors from Italy, Spain, Sweden, Russia, Japan and South Korea in particular. Also, 89% of the exhibitors (88% in 2015) came from abroad. This year’s event saw a growth in exhibitors from Europe, in particular Turkey, Italy, the Netherlands and Belgium, as well as global exhibitors from countries including Brazil and the US. In terms of products, Heimtextil was able to considerably expand its portfolio in various segments, including decor and upholstery materials, textile digital printing, and the product group covering bedlinen, bedding, covers, decorative pillows and, chiefly, mattresses. The next Heimtextil will take place from 10-13th January 2017.

Clerkenwell Design Week prepares for seventh edition The seventh edition of Clerkenwell Design Week will see new locations, brands and installations join this vibrant festival in one of London’s most creative quarters. In a first for the festival, the organiser has appointed architecture practice Ommx to create a strategic plan for the event – including the format expanding to eight exhibition venues, a gateway destination to Clerkenwell’s showrooms, an installation trail and a new destination at Spa Fields. Show director William Knight says: “The

expansion of Clerkenwell Design Week‘s exhibition programme to eight major locations is a sign of how dynamic the creative industries are in this area, and a testament to the successes of previous years’ shows. We have new exhibitions, a new masterplan and a new visual identity. But it is the energy and sense of community among architects and designers here that inspires us, and helps make the festival so unique in London.” Clerkenwell Design Week, sponsored by Renault, will take place from 24-26th May across the London district.

Paris event organiser positive despite drop in footfall at recent edition

Tokyo fair records visitor increase Japanese trade event IFFT/Interior Lifestyle Living, which took place in November, presented a record-breaking 431 exhibitors (378 domestic, 53 from overseas) from 18 countries and regions, offering a variety of products. Despite bad weather, the visitor count reached 17,369 – an increase of 11% on the previous year. The next IFFT/ Interior Lifestyle Living will be held from 7-9th November, while sister event Interior Lifestyle Tokyo will take place from 1st-3rd June 2016 – both at Tokyo Big Sight.

Shanghai design event back next month Design Shanghai returns to the Shanghai Exhibition Centre from 9-12th March, welcoming the likes of Cassina, Vitra, Moroso, Magis, Hay, Seletti, Villeroy & Boch, Miele, Bang & Olufsen and Serip. It will also present China-based exhibitors such as Frank Chou and Chen Furong. Local names also include Mexmarts, Beyond Object and Derek Chen, founder of Maxmarko. The event is curated by Infrastructure, Hong Kong-based duo (Ross Urwin and Darrel Best) behind the creative direction of Habitat, Lane Crawford and Liberty of London.

Last year’s edition of Espritmeuble, which took place at Parc de Porte de Versailles, Paris in December, reported an attendance of 8742 – a slightly lower footfall than in 2014 (-6%), attributable, according to the show’s organiser, to “the general climate of December 2015”, and a limited reduction “in relation to the defections observed by the organisers of professional trade

fairs, which are estimated to be between five and 15%”. The exhibitor offer was much larger than in 2014, with 300 brands present – an increase of 50%. Espritmeuble will next take place from 3rd to 6th December 2016. Read a review of this year’s edition in this issue.

Chelsea Harbour the hub of London Design Week From 13-18th March, the Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour will become the focus of London Design Week 2016, the spring design event devoted to luxury interiors. With a mix of original collections and commissioned installations, the event promises product launches from over 600 global names, as well as the Conversations in Design series and the Access All Areas programme. Whether seeking ideas for a residential scheme, finishing touches for a city apartment or design solutions for a hotel, bar or yacht, London Design Week 2016 promises the latest furniture, fabrics, lighting, wallcoverings, carpets, tiles, kitchens, bathrooms and outdoor living, alongside a design

blog for breaking news, backed up by courtesy transport, restaurant, pop-ups and curated displays. New initiatives at Design Centre, Chelsea Harbour include the development of Design Centre East. New showrooms and ateliers opening in time for the event include Birgit Israel, Marc de Berny, Iksel, Front Rugs, Espresso, Elise Som and Houlès. Exhibitors include Altfield, Baker, C & C Milano, Cassina, Christopher Guy, Cole & Son, Evitavonni, Flexform, Harlequin, Jacaranda Carpets, Nicholas Haslam, Poltrona Frau, Romo, Samuel Heath, Sanderson, Turnstyle Designs and Zoffany, plus Designers Guild and others around Chelsea.

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Most ranges available upholsered and leather Rockers and grandfathers available in beech and colonial hardwood All Farmhouse chairs are available in standard and wide seat and Carver design Chairs, tables, cabinets and occasional furniture available in Oak, Beech and Pine

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NEWS Industry

UK bed buying habits exposed

Chippendale furniture school wins Global Business Excellence Award

According to the results of a Europe-wide survey into consumer bed buying habits, part-funded by the UK’s National Bed Federation (NBF) and The Sleep Council, the UK tops the league when it comes to lack of sleep – 45% of respondents claim not to get enough compared to an average of 35% across the rest of Europe. Despite these figures, only 9% thought the quality of their bed or mattress disturbed their sleep, while twice as many (18%) of their counterparts in Europe have made a connection between good sleep and good beds. One reason could be that Britons are more likely to buy mattresses online – where they cannot try them out first – rather than through traditional retail outlets. 16% of those questioned in the UK, compared to 12% in Europe, said they had bought online. According to the study, British bed buyers are also more price sensitive than their European counterparts, with 52% saying price was important to their purchasing decision as opposed to 45% across the rest of Europe. Indeed, 41% of those questioned in the UK agreed that they would only buy a mattress if it was on sale – only 16% of those questioned across Europe said special discount offers were important. Indeed, 73% of Brits said they would not pay more than £750 for a double mattress. Jessica Alexander, executive director of the NBF, believes there is a link between this perception of value and the trend for buying online: “Buying online certainly has a role to play in today’s world, and it’s not exclusively the domain of bargain beds – some very good mattresses can be bought on the internet too. But our advice to people would always be to try before you buy so that you can be sure the mattress you are buying is comfortable for you. It’s a very subjective purchase, and what’s right for one person doesn’t suit another.” This focus on low prices could also explain the apparent dissatisfaction of many Brits with mattress purchases in the past few years. According to the research, 47% of the UK sample had replaced their mattress in less than five years, compared to only 30% of Europeans. Says Jessica: “While we recommend that people should look to change a good mattress every seven years, the fact that so many people in this country are doing it in under five would indicate they were not altogether happy with the mattress they had. Perhaps that’s not surprising if it was a really cheap one which they didn’t even try out.” The growing shift to online sales could also account for Britain’s love of brands as a buying reassurance. Buying a well-known brand was deemed important by 16% of those questioned in the UK, but only by 11% of Europeans. The UK survey was conducted by InSites Consulting, and commissioned by the European Bedding Industries’ Association (EBIA) to examine European consumers’ perceptions and expectations of mattresses. The research was conducted across 10 countries (Belgium, Holland, France, Germany, Spain, Austria, Italy, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK), and involved interviewing 500 consumers in each country, with a focus on those who had either bought a bed in the past year or who were intending to buy one in the next year.

The Chippendale International School of Furniture has been named winner of the Outstanding Educational Service category at the 2015 Global Business Excellence Awards. The school, based in East Lothian, Scotland, is acknowledged as being one of the finest furniture design and restoration schools internationally, and last year celebrated its 30th birthday. The Global Business Excellence Awards boasts a large panel of independent expert judges who select winners according to strict criteria for each category and sector, focusing on financial results, innovation, customer, employee, investor and community benefits. The chairman of the judges comments: “Congratulations to the Chippendale International School of Furniture for putting British education in furniture design on the international map. The school runs intensive 30-week courses, and by combining its own in-house expert tutors with a rota of visiting experts, it offers training in old techniques and those using the latest technology. It has a reputation as a beacon of excellence, attracting pupils from all around the world and it is showcasing the UK as the place to go for expert training in furniture making.” Last year, the school was also named winner of the Best Business category in East Lothian at the 2014 Best of the Best Business Awards, and a

The school’s teaching staff Best Business Award in the small- to medium-size category. Anselm Fraser, principal of the school, says: “We are absolutely delighted to have won this prestigious award, which again underlines our status as an internationally-recognised furniture school – a school that continues to attract students from around the world. Furniture design and making is an age-old craft that also uses modern techniques and computer technologies – a something-old and something-new teaching course. We’re very pleased to have been recognised as an international place of learning in a niche area of education.”

BRC chief executive awarded OBE Helen Dickinson has been awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours List for 2016 for services to the retail industry. Helen has been in her post for the BRC since January 2013, following a successful career working with retailers at KPMG. At the BRC, Helen is a strong advocate of retail, supporting retailers and influencing governments and stakeholders in order to make a positive difference to the industry and the customers it serves. Helen says: “I am deeply honoured to receive an OBE – it is a testament to the encouragement and support of the BRC’s members as we have sought to promote and serve the industry and to our great BRC team. I am passionate about the retail industry and its place at the forefront of innovation and social cohesion, touching every aspect of our local communities and the lives of everyone in the country.”

House price forecast

QFC lends its support

House prices in the UK will see an average increase of 6% over the course of next year, according to the RICS housing forecast. East Anglia is set to see the highest predicted rise, at 8%, while the North-east is likely to see more modest price rises of 3%. The North-east, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland are set to continue outpacing the rest of the UK. Although housing has climbed the policy agenda, with supply issues dominating, RICS suggests that the likely increase in prices in 2016 will outstrip any rise in household income.

Sofa manufacturer QFC, based in Grantham, Lincolnshire, offered over £45,000 worth of sofas and chairs to help people in Cumbria who had lost their furniture and belongings to floods last year. Gareth Mayhew, compliance manager at QFC, initiated the idea, contacting Eden Flood Volunteers in Cumbria to arrange deliveries. The first delivery of sofas included 11 new armchairs and 54 sofas. The next included 17 more pieces – in total over £45,400 in retail value, by far the largest donation received by Eden Flood Volunteers.

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NEWS Supplier

Origin Red to close UKbased operation Hong Kong-based Origin Red Group has announced its intention to pull out of UK distribution to concentrate on its growing international container business for furniture and home decor products. Sales at Origin Red Furniture in the UK have reportedly grown consistently over the past three years, but at a much slower rate than international sales have for its parent company, Hong Kongbased Origin Red. Following a strategic review, it was concluded that an orderly wind-down of the UK operation would allow the group’s management team to focus on container business to customers in the UK, Republic of Ireland and Australia, as well as new business in Canada, the US and elsewhere.The target closure date for the UK business is the end of March, in line with the group’s financial year-end. Origin Red’s Paul James comments: “It’s been my life for the past 25 years and I am looking forward to new challenges and opportunities.”

New head for Steinhoff ’s European mattress operation Manufacturer and retailer Steinhoff International has appointed Maurice Hasani to oversee the development of its mattress manufacturing operations across Europe. Prior to joining Steinhoff, Maurice sat on the board of the Cauval Group, which owns the Dunlopillo and Treca brands in Europe, and was also general manager of SAPSA, licensee of the Tempur Sealy brands. With over 16 years in the mattress manufacturing sector, Maurice comes to Steinhoff with a wealth of operational experience.

New financial controller for mattress company UK mattress specialist The Foam Company has appointed Lee Males as its new financial controller. Lee has over 18 years’ experience as a senior professional having previously worked for Oxford-based James Cowper, and then later in both the engineering and retail sectors. Lee says: “I am pleased to have the opportunity to work with such a fantastic management team and am looking forward to the challenges ahead.”

Charltons Furniture completes MBO Charltons Furniture has completed a Management Buy Out from its parent company, AJ Charlton & Sons. The MBO will trade under the name Charltons Furniture, under the direction of MD Ross Charlton and operations director Bill Howard. Ross says: “This is all very much a natural progression for us. The main activity for AJ Charlton & Sons Ltd has been gates and fencing. As a furniture business, we have had to deal with very different pressures, demands and expectations. For everyone it made sound business sense for the furniture part of the business to develop on its

own, with a small but very focused management team, able to react quickly and decisively in a marketplace that is capable of changing very rapidly. “Our customers will notice little, if any, difference in the day-to-day running of the business. For everyone here at Charltons Furniture the MBO presents us with new opportunities and possibilities. “Our business plan contains many new and exciting ideas, which we shall be revealing as 2016 unfolds.”

Industry veteran announces retirement After nearly 50 years in the furniture industry and some 30 since founding the business that bears his name, Julian Bowen has announced his retirement. Julian’s business is widely regarded as one of the UK’s leading furniture wholesalers. Following record sales in 2015, the company remains ambitious, expanding warehouse capacity by over 50% for 2016. Julian will remain a significant shareholder in the business and will continue to advise the executive team of Julian Bowen Ltd. Julian’s son Jonathan, who joined the business in 2015 after a career in financial services, will assume the role of chairman, while current commercial director Emmett Lenaghan will take on the role of MD. Julian says: “I am incredibly proud of the business that I have been able to build, over 30 years, with the help of some phenomenal people. There is no doubt that the staff at Julian Bowen Ltd are the best in the business, from our customer service representatives, through to our warehouse and logistics teams, our quality control teams across the world and a very talented senior leadership team. “I have always demanded that as a business we must constantly strive to set ever-higher benchmarks in terms of what we can offer our customers, and I know that this ethos will persist under Jonathan and Emmett’s leadership.

I’m incredibly grateful to so many of our loyal customers, many of whom have become good friends over the years, for their unwavering support on our journey. It has been a lot of fun, and I’m delighted to leave the business in such fine fettle and with more growth to come.” Emmett comments: “Julian Bowen is a hard act to follow. He has created a brand, culture and framework for success that positions us incredibly well in a rapidly-changing industry.”

Despite not acknowledging infringement, Baumhaus Imports has paid Anti Copying in Design (ACID) member Bluebone £15,000 over a lookalike challenge. When Bluebone discovered its competitor was importing a furniture range known as Urban Chic which looked very similar to its Titanic range, the company acted decisively. After lengthy legal exchanges a settlement was reached, avoiding the need for court proceedings. Baumhaus claims to have made only a small profit on sales of its Urban Chic range, and has agreed to stop manufacturing or importing Urban Chic and to pay £15,000 compensation to Bluebone for its UK sales. Baumhaus said the settlement would wipe out its profits on the range.

Bluebone’s Dale Boal says: “In today’s market it is increasingly challenging for companies to present original designs, concepts and ideas. As a company Bluebone make huge efforts to work with manufactures and designers to bring interesting, design-led, commercial products to our clients and retail partners. “We are very pleased that by working together with Mr Olivier Lalmand, the original designer, and the services of Stone King solicitors, we were able to negotiate a halt to the import of these products and secured a level of compensation. It has certainly spurred us on to continue defending against other perceived infringements, of which we have several currently pending.”

Silentnight triumphs at nursery awards Bluebone wins £15k in lookalike challenge UK bed manufacturer Silentnight has secured two more awards for its Safe Nights memory wool cot bed mattress, after the product passed more rigorous testing from parents. The bedmaker won gold for Best Nursery Product at the Mother and Baby 2016 awards, and bronze for Best Sleep Product. These two additions take the total accolades for the cot bed mattress to four in the last year. The mattress also received the Loved By Parents award for Best Safety Product, and it was chosen as a silver winner for Best Mattress in the Best Baby and Toddler Gear Awards.

New MD for Wade Upholstery Long Eaton brand Wade Upholstery has seen Simon Wade – formerly G Plan Upholstery’s design director – appointed as the business’ MD. Simon will take over the role from Eddie O’Dwyer, who has held the post since 2012. In the meantime, Eddie will remain within the company in a different position.

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INTERVIEW Savoir Beds

In bed with Savoir Based in London, Savoir Beds handcrafts luxury mattresses from natural materials, including horsetail, cashmere, lamb’s wool and cotton. Victoria Noakes speaks to MD and founder Alistair Hughes to uncover more about the bed retailer with a rich history ...

Harlech

Savoir Beds’ story began more than a century ago, when Richard D’Oyly Carte opened The Savoy Hotel in London in 1889. During a refit in 1905, it was felt that no bed on the market met the hotel’s legendary standards of excellence, so the prestigious upholsterer James Edwards was commissioned to create The Savoy Bed. To ensure exclusivity, the Savoy Group bought the bedworks in the 1930s, and it did not change hands again until Alistair Hughes and his business partner bought the company in 1997, and Savoir Beds was born. The luxurious bed originally created for The Savoy Hotel – which has been slept on by the likes of Elton John, Oprah, Madonna, Sir Winston Churchill and Marilyn Monroe – is still made today as the Savoir No 2 bed, featuring the trademark Trellis ticking designed by Lady D’Oyly Carte. Savoir Beds opened its first showroom in 2001 in London’s Wigmore Street, and since then has expanded internationally, now boasting stores in major cities in Germany, France, China, the USA, India, Russia, Taiwan and Korea. What’s more, the business has a

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concession in Harrods and a second bedworks in South Wales. “Savoir still makes its beds in the same way that it did in 1905, using the same materials – which is so rare in today’s market. We make luxury beds using the finest natural materials, from long, curled Latin American horse tail to Mongolian cashmere and British lamb’s wool, with the best craftsmanship to create long-lasting comfort for our clients,” Alistair says. Each of Savoir’s beds is made on a bespoke basis, specifically for the customer, either at its main bedworks in London or its second site in Wales. One craftsman makes each mattress, and like an artist, signs the label on each completed job. Savoir customers are able to create a bed to their own specifications in terms of both style and comfort, completely from scratch. “We recently had a client who bought a chateau in the South of France, and had a wonderful view from his window as well as a lovely atmospheric open fireplace. He wanted to be able to face the window and the fire, so we designed a high-tech round bed that rotates on a platform,” explains Alistair.

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Savoir Beds INTERVIEW

Claudia

Felix

Ian

Savoir Beds MD Alistair Hughes

“Savoir Beds is for anyone who wants to experience the best! We have a wide variety of clients, from billionaires to customers of more modest wealth, and we believe that as we all spend around a third of our lives in bed, this is something we should truly invest in.” Last year was a busy one for Savoir, signalling the opening of its company-owned showroom in one of the most sought-after streets in Paris, as well as its Asian expansion, with concessions being opened in both Hong Kong and Seoul, South Korea. On top of this, the company unveiled its show space within Harrods’ refurbished bed studio. “France has been a good market for us over the last five or six years, and we felt that the time was right to open our own showroom rather than operating through branded dealers. So, when the opportunity came up, we had no hesitation in investing heavily in the showroom. We were also excited to expand further in Asia to South Korea’s capital and Hong Kong – they’re fantastic and prosperous locations,” says Alistair.

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“Savoir still makes its beds in the same way that it did in 1905, using the same materials – which is so rare in today’s market” Savoir keeps a close eye on the market’s design trends, making sure that the company is always forward-thinking when it comes to style. With the changing consumer market in mind, Savoir is aware that buying preferences are evolving, and is set to reveal a new-look website with various new features very soon. This, along with plans to open another company-owned showroom early this year, demonstrates Savoir Beds’ desire to continue to innovate and progress, making the retailer one to watch in the months to come. W savoirbeds.co.uk

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INTERVIEW Clickthrough > Suki Cheema This month, the homewares website in the spotlight is www. sukicheema.com – Furniture News explores the practices and philosophies behind the enterprise …

Clickthrough > Suki Cheema Suki Cheema, creative director

Why visit your website? If you’re after one of a kind textile designs for the house, you will find bespoke pieces at Suki Cheema. Each design is based on a story from around the world, designed by me and handcrafted by artisans in India with techniques from centuries ago. How did you enter the trade? After graduating from Central Saint Martins in 1999, I moved to New York were I worked in the fashion, textile and home industry for eleven years for the likes of Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren. I spent eight years as print room manager for Diane Von Furstenberg, who became a big inspiration in my life, making me want to follow my dreams. In 2011, I launched Suki Cheema, a home lifestyle brand. Who is your e-commerce hero? To be honest I don’t have an e-commerce hero. I do have an artist and a designer I admire, whose work inspires me – Cy Twombly and Diane Von Furstenberg. Describe a typical working day I’m up early around 5:30-6am to meditate for 30 mins and then a morning walk in the surrounding countryside in Kent, before I start my day. I’m normally in the studio by 8am and the day starts with me checking in with India on

production and delivery timelines – as they are five hours ahead, this normally takes up my morning sometimes into the afternoons. I receive packages from Asia on a daily basis, and deal with fabric strike off and colour corrections, as well as checking my emails during the morning. Afternoons are mostly designing and calling potential buyers and by evening, I’m on the phone to my US counterpart on sales and collection launches dates and target strategies for the next collection launch. What part of your job would you prefer to avoid? I don’t really have a part of my job I would avoid. Having your own company does have it challenges but I like to jump in and make sure everything is done on time from stock take to shipping, making sure invoices are paid, production timelines are met. It’s all fun because it’s part of the job.

What are your growth plans for the business? We are looking at expanding into the Asian market and online worldwide. We also hope to have our own freestanding store in the near future. What advice would you offer an aspiring e-tailer? Be true to your identity and brand. Follow your dreams

What has been your greatest challenge? Making sure my manufacturers understand my design process and quality control and meet delivery timelines. Making sure my brand is true to my identity. How much do you invest in making your site more visible? We have a small budget for online but we try to keep it simple for customers to use and get our brand identity across. As my

“Each design is based on a story from around the world, designed by me and handcrafted by artisans in India with techniques from centuries ago”

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design motto is “Suki Cheema is a love affair between art travel and beautiful things”, we make sure the Instagram feed for the website reflects my travel and inspiration.

Snapshot: Suki Cheema produces striking furnishing pieces such as cushions and rugs Launched: 2011

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END OF LINE SECONDS RETURNS

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EVENTS Espritmeuble

Review A spirited performance Frustrated by the lack of a strong furniture trade event in the country, three French manufacturers came together in 2012 to launch Espritmeuble, a Parisian event with a strong focus on the mid- to upper-end of the market. Four editions later, the show has cemented its place as France’s principal furniture show – Paul Farley visited the latest edition to evaluate its unique charms …

It’s long puzzled me that, despite being one of our closest neighbours, France accounts for such a small proportion of the UK’s furniture imports – around 2% in 2014, according to FIRA’s latest findings. Although a combination of issues concerning cost, design style, language and legislation barriers are at the heart of this disconnect, the fact that the country has gone for so long without having a prominent furniture exhibition at its heart must be partly to blame. It’s now 2016, and that caveat no longer applies. Espritmeuble has quickly come to exemplify the better end of the French market – the bulk of the industry not completely dominated by multiples – bringing a notable selection of exhibitors from France and further afield together within an attractive, convivial environment. It’s also accessible. From London, the heart of France can be reached in little over two hours by train. It was perhaps symptomatic of the times that my own journey was delayed due to reports of violence on the London underground. Just three weeks earlier, Paris had suffered a co-ordinated terrorist attack that left 130 dead, and the ripples following this tragedy were still being felt around Western Europe. Consequently, whilst the inhabitants of Paris were generally quick to go back about their business, to many outsiders the city remained a

1 Lee & Lewis 2 Mab

less certain destination – particularly for large-scale gatherings such as trade exhibitions. In the event, the show reported an attendance of 8742 – a 6% decrease on that of 2014, principally driven by a drop in the number of international visitors. “With attendance to the other professional shows in Paris at that time down 5-15%, we were actually quite stable,” comments Gaétan Ménard, the show’s president and the director-general of cabinet furniture manufacturer Ernest Menard – who, alongside Gilles Silberman, vice-chairman of the Cauval Group, and Alain Liault, chairman of Meubles Célio, founded the event. “We were expecting a bigger drop – and those who did come were extremely satisfied.” Further mitigating the decrease, the organiser points to a significantly more qualified visitor base of company managers in attendance, as well as a far broader exhibitor offer – at 300, a collection of brands 50% greater than in 2014, across a floorspace of the Parc de Porte de Versailles venue 30% larger than previously. Quality is the watchword when it comes to the show’s exhibitors, of which 50% were French businesses. The remainder comprised companies from Portugal, Italy, Germany, Spain and elsewhere, including leading brands such as Calligaris, Calia Italia, Stressless and himolla.

“Espritmeuble has quickly come to exemplify the better end of the French market, bringing a notable selection of exhibitors from France and further afield together within an attractive, convivial environment”

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Espritmeuble EVENTS

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Whilst Gaétan’s team is keen to further expand the show’s offer this year – in particular its range of contemporary furniture – the selection of exhibitors remains very much a curated process. Gaétan argues that consistency of quality is now a given for the event’s target visitors, which comprise “the top 15% of France’s retailers, and 90% of the country’s independent dealers”. “This was only the fourth edition,” he says. “I think we are almost at maturity for our own market.” Internationals accounted for 11% of the show’s visitors in 2015 – a component Gaétan is determined to build, to this end hosting this year’s AGM of global journalist alliance, the IAFP.

Representatives from nearly 20 international magazines arrived in Paris to explore the event, and assess its relevance to their respective markets. It is impossible to disregard the fact that – acts of terror notwithstanding – two rival shows bookend Espritmeuble’s early December fixture. With Brussels Furniture Fair taking place in early November, and imm cologne in January, what can espritmeuble offer those buyers already sourcing European exports? “The French market is Europe’s second in terms of size, so it deserves a good show, and we certainly want to become more significant in terms of European trading,” says Gaétan. “Both Brussels and Cologne are doing a great job, but they don’t >>>

3 Espritmeuble president Gaétan Ménard with IAFP president Zeki Yucel 4 Fama

“The very spirit of the show is in some ways more evocative of an at-home event than a trade fair”

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EVENTS Espritmeuble “The lavish approach to catering and entertainment goes a long way towards creating an intimate, friendly atmosphere that matches many better-established events”

5 A masterclass with celebrity chef Norbert Tareyre 6 Treca 7 Artcopi

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offer the same exhibitor roster as us. Just as the Brussels show is tailored to the Benelux market, Espritmeuble offers more southern European names, and their product tends to be more tailored to the French market. “Take the cabinet furniture market, for example. We probably have the most interesting offer of any show of our size in this sector, more so than the mass-market Cologne fair, and the prices can often be 20-30% higher in Germany than they are here.” Cabinet trends running throughout Espritmeuble’s halls range from country rustic to the ultra contemporary, with made-to-measure, concrete tops and integrated lighting features jumping out at every turn – enough variety for retailers looking to differentiate their offer. It almost goes without saying that it’s near impossible to match Paris as a destination, and Espritmeuble offers international visitors an invitational programme covering their flight and accommodation. The show is accessible, professional, and eminently hospitable – visitors are treated to free catering throughout, and the organiser celebrates proceedings with a lavish gala dinner. Indeed,

the very spirit of the show is in some ways more evocative of an at-home event than a trade fair. “Espritmeuble was organised by three professional manufacturers for the purpose of welcoming our customers,” clarifies Gaétan. “We don’t see our visitors as customers of Espritmeuble, but as guests of our respective factories.” Gaétan can certainly argue that his management team of manufacturers has a better grasp on the realities of the furniture trade than most show organisers. The lavish approach to catering and entertainment – from mobile snack stations to celebrity chef demos – goes a long way towards creating an intimate, friendly atmosphere that matches many better-established events, creating an environment for bigger, better business transactions with each passing year. With its unique, concentrated offer of high-end European brands and specialised French product, Espritmeuble deserves to be on any buyer’s radar, and its relevance to the UK market can only grow. The stage is already set for the next edition, which will run from 3rd-6th December. W espritmeuble.com

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EVENTS Fair Comment – Meble Polska

Fair Comment: Meble Polska In Fair Comment, Furniture News quizzes the people behind the scenes to discover what makes their exhibition unique, what changes are taking place, and why buyers from the UK and ROI should take note. This month, Józef Szyszka, project manager of Meble Polska, outlines his event’s offer …

Identity: Meble Polska is the largest international furniture contracting event in Central and Eastern Europe, attracting around 20,000 furniture wholesale dealers and retailers from almost 50 countries every year.

Józef Szyszka

Attendance: In 2014 the show attracted 17,500 visitors, and 20,065 in 2015 – the target is 21,000 for this year’s edition. In terms of exhibitor numbers, there were 207 in 2014, 241 in 2015, and there will be 255 this year. What’s new? This year’s exhibition will occupy a surface area of over 40,000m2. Almost all of Poland’s leading furniture manufacturers have confirmed their participation. Compared to the previous year, the number of upholstered furniture will be significantly enlarged – as will the number of mattress manufacturers, due to the inclusion of a few major companies new to the fair this year. Like last year, the fair will be accompanied by the Home Decor Interior Design Fair – with a similar contract profile – and the arena Design event, dedicated to industrial design, during which, each year, lectures by global design stars will be held. This time, the special guest of arena Design will be Inga Sempé, a famous Parisian designer, cooperating with such manufacturers as Ligne Roset, Alessi, LucePlan, Mutina, Moustache and Svenskt Tenn. During the fair, Inga will deliver a lecture entitled Making Some Objects, which will match the theme of arena Design 2016 – Project, Process, Product.

“The most spectacular increase in the number of exhibitors in recent years has been noted in the mattresses sector”

Direction? Poland is the third largest furniture exporter in Europe and the fourth in the world. As much as 90% of the furniture manufactured in Poland is sold outside the country. In addition, the export of Polish furniture is constantly growing – according to estimates by market research institutes, in 2015 it amounted to €8.6b. That is why we want Meble Polska to be of an even more international character. We are focused on inviting the key furniture buyers from the most important markets, including, of course, the UK. It is a kind of feedback loop – the greater the export of furniture manufactured in Poland, the higher the exhibitor and visitor interest in participation in the fair. And the growth of our fair contributes to the growth of Polish exports.

In your opinion, what makes Meble Polska better than any other similar furniture event? Contrary to many similar events organised in Central and Eastern Europe, Meble Polska has a strictly business transactional character. It is visited only by professionals, significantly increasing its suitability for exhibitors and visitors. FIRA’s latest statistics show that Poland is now the UK’s third biggest importer, after China and Italy. What plans are in place to increase this trade even further? The furniture industry professionals from the UK represent the largest group of visitors at the furniture fair in Poznan, after the guests from Germany and the Czech Republic – British furniture buyers represent as much as 10% of the visitors from abroad. It is the result of our intensive promotional campaigns in this market carried out for several years now. Fair organiser MTP in Poznan includes in its structure a Department of Communication with Visitors, composed of several dozen employees, whose main task is to ensure a great number of professional visitors during the fair and offer comprehensive services for VIP guests. Before the fair, telemarketers contact about 13,000 furniture industry professionals in Europe and beyond by phone, and invite them to participate. Such direct actions are also carried out in the UK. However, if we have failed to send an invitation to any readers, I encourage them to register through our online service for visitors, www.mtp24.pl.

Date: 8-11th March | Location: Poznan International Fair | Contact: www.meble.mtp.pl/en

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Fair Comment – Meble Polska EVENTS

What product areas have developed most significantly over the last three years of Meble Polska? The most spectacular increase in the number of exhibitors in recent years has been noted in the mattresses sector. But it should not come as a surprise, as Poland is one of the undisputed leaders in the manufacture of mattresses in the world, and second only to China as an exporter of those products. In 2014, we sold mattresses worth 2.14b PLN (Polish zlotys) abroad. The data for the first half of 2015 – 1075m PLN – confirms that in 2015 maintaining this result should not be a problem. Why did the timeline for the event change for this year? The organisation of Meble Polska in March is not much of a change. The last two editions were held in February, but the previous two before that took place in March. The main reason for the changes were due to suggestions from exhibitors who, thanks to the postponing of the date, have more time to prepare new collections.

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Why should UK buyers in particular take note of the event? The Meble Polska Furniture Fair is the largest presentation of Polish furniture in the world. Anyone who is interested in trading in furniture with Poland simply needs to be there. Many of our exhibitors already have considerable experience in the export of furniture to the UK, and their products have the required certificates and meet the relevant British Standards. Anything else potential UK visitors should know? I would like to warn furniture buyers from the UK that due to the size of the exhibition it is worth spending two days in Poznan. Reaching all the potential suppliers in a single day can be difficult. The registered furniture buyers will receive a VIP card entitling them to free admission and vehicle access to the fair, catering and participation in the evening gala event. The key customers can also anticipate unlimited access to the VIP zone, offering comfortable working conditions and absolute discretion when conducting business negotiations

“Anyone who is interested in trading in furniture with Poland simply needs to be there”

Date: 8-11th March | Location: Poznan International Fair | Contact: www.meble.mtp.pl/en

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RESOURCES Building a brand – beliefs

THE AUTHOR

Colin Watson is an industry consultant, and former MD of the British Contract Furnishing Association (BCFA), which boasts over 250 members including manufacturers, suppliers and designers. W thebcfa.com

Building a brand – beliefs Since it was established in 1970, the BCFA has observed the impact of multiple brand tactics on its members’ value – both that perceived by the public and stakeholders, and that evidenced financially through sales and profit. In the second of a series of articles exploring brand building, Colin Watson examines the impact of clear and consistent brand beliefs on a company’s value …

Our last article explored how a clearly-defined identity is integral to company success and, as the skeleton of a brand, underpins and influences all future decisions. Here we will look at how, steered by their personality, companies have taken this one step further and structured their personality into clearlydefined beliefs and values. As well as examining the differences between brand personality and beliefs, we’ll explore how a sustained commitment to defined values is essential for success, and look at the importance of communicating ideals both internally to staff and stakeholders and externally to customers and clients. Finally, we will examine what the success borne out of strong and sustained brand values looks like. Concrete commitments On the face of it, a brand’s personality and beliefs can appear to be very similar, and naturally there are some undeniable resemblances. Like its personality, a brand’s beliefs should focus less on the products and services it provides, and more on its ‘soul’. It should inspire and aspire to more than the financial, and will ultimately yield much more than this, stirring an emotional connection and the trust, rapport and loyalty akin to that felt when one finds a kindred spirit. There are, however, some key differences between the two which makes having both beliefs and personality essential for success. The main distinction is the form each takes. Beliefs are more concrete and typically take the structure of a set of words or phrases which define the company’s values and mission – distilled down from the fluid and transient actions which make up

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a personality. Clearly defining values and motivation in this way serves an important purpose, promoting, encouraging and enabling consistency across all elements of the company, and we have found this to be integral to brand success. Values and mission statement Reflecting the way brand beliefs must be strongly defined to ensure success, the form they typically take is equally as structured. Most commonly, these are laid out as a set of values and a mission statement. Communicating these commitments Once identified, company values and beliefs must be successfully communicated for success. Although it is of course essential for values to be conveyed to customers, this will only be possible once they are fully embraced by those within the company. For customers to believe in the beliefs, the beliefs must truly be within and part of the brand. Communicating values within a company ensures every employee’s energies and efforts are focused in the same direction, ensuring total brand cohesion and consistency. When defined and written down, all members of the company, at any level and in any department, can also refer to them at any time. It is by no means only new staff who may need to refer to these values – even founders of companies and those who initially identified the beliefs should re-examine and refresh their ideals. Google articulates well both how company beliefs act as an anchor for all brand decisions, and the importance of revisiting these. Fittingly titled What We Believe, the introduction to the company’s values

i

explains how “from time to time we revisit this list to see if it still holds true”. It is also of course essential to communicate brand beliefs to customers, but this will be much easier once they have been embodied internally. The ways these can be conveyed are boundless and developing daily, and the marketing mix of the 21st century is almost indistinguishable from that which marketeer Neil Borden defined in 1953. What is clear, however, is the importance of consistency across all channels. Consistent brand values for sustained success A sustained commitment to brand beliefs is essential for success and value, and this can reveal itself in many ways. On an unseen level, defined values promote brand direction. Another intangible benefit is the emotional connection it instils in customers. In today’s increasingly crowded marketplace, this can not only incite solitary sales, but also inspire brand loyalty. Other benefits for business are perhaps more easily measurable. One way success for Cartier, one of the world’s oldest jewellery design companies, has been evidenced is its expansion into other markets. Its commitment to staying at the forefront of contemporary design has seen it expand since 1847 from Paris to India, London and New York. Similarly, Brooks Brothers, widely considered the world’s oldest fashion brand, has 210 stores in the US and 70 in other countries. Success can also make itself visible on the balance sheet. What has become clear is that for success, well-defined brand beliefs must combine with consistency and commitment

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W

Dealers


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36

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RESOURCES Industry statistics

THE AUTHOR

Dr Peter Beele is the technical development manager at FIRA International, a company that delivers independent services dedicated to the furniture supply chain and consumers, as well as research and standards advice for members of the Furniture Industry Research Association. The full report is available free to FIRA members, and for £300 otherwise. T 01438 777700

Latest FIRA statistics digest points to recovery FIRA’s latest statistical digest, covering the period from 2011 to 2014 and including some 2015 estimates, is an invaluable guide to national economic and industry trends.

Compiled using data publicly available from Government bodies such as the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and HM Customs and Revenue, the statistics digest is one of the clearest pictures available of today’s industry, covering its sub-sectors across a range of contract, office and domestic product groups. As a media partner of the Furniture Industry Research Association, Furniture News has the privilege of bringing its readers a summary of the report …

National economic trends Lending Following a significant increase in unsecured lending from 2012 to 2013 (4.4%), there was an even greater increase from 2013 to 2014 (9.8%). Net lending reached £247b in March 2015 – higher than the previous peak in September 2008. Total lending, including that secured on dwellings, has increased since 2011, peaking at £1496b in 2014. This upward trend in total lending to individuals and housing associations is dominated by lending secured on dwellings, which reached £1.255b in 2014.

£40,000 from 2012 to 2013, a trend that continued into 2014. Whilst the total number of transactions reached 1.3 million in 2013, this figure remains lower than the number of transactions in 2006, which totalled almost 1.7 million.

Property Historically, the number of dwellings starts in the UK almost halved between 2007/8 and 2008/9. Since then, housing starts have increased gradually, although in 2013/14 there was a dramatic increase – of 26% compared with the previous year. Despite this increase in the building of new houses – and its potential for increasing associated furniture sales – annual dwellings starts remained well below those recorded in the four years prior to the 2008 financial crisis, when they were typically of the order of 220,000-230,000. There was a sharp increase in the number and value of property transactions above

Spending Total consumer expenditure on all goods increased between 2011 and 2014 to over £1077b (an increase of just over 7%). Expenditure on furnishings, household goods and house maintenance increased over this period by 8%, with the majority of this growth (5%) attributable to 2013/14. Consumer expenditure on furniture and furnishings was almost £14b in 2014 – an 8% increase from 2011, fuelled by significant growth in 2014 (7% greater than 2013). Furniture and furnishings repair spend, having reached £59m in 2012 – a significant recovery after a very tough year in 2010 – dropped to just £23m in 2014. However,

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Number of companies in turnover bands by region (£k) – Yorkshire and the Humber boasted the largest proportion of high-turnover companies although anecdotal evidence suggests otherwise, the true value may be hidden within other statistics. The average weekly retail internet sales for all products grew to £719m in 2014. As such, in December 2014 the internet accounted for almost 12.8% of all retail sales, compared with 11.8% in the same month the previous year. Comparable values in the household goods sector were much smaller – only 5% of all internet sales are attributable to the sector (2% for furniture and furnishings).

Furniture industry trends Turnover Total provisional turnover for all UK furniture manufacturing in 2014 was £7.4b – 6.1% higher than in 2013, and 14.6% higher than in 2011. This represents a significant recovery, with the largest increases occurring in 2013 and 2014. Furniture manufacturing in 2014 represented 1.4% of the UK’s total

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Industry statistics RESOURCES manufacturing turnover. The total number of furniture manufacturers in 2014 was 5932. This number has gradually declined since 2011 (by 3.2%), with the most notable decrease occurring in 2012/13 (1.9%). Despite 2014 turnover being 1.4% of the total for UK manufacturing, the furniture sector employed 2.9% of all UK manufacturing personnel (71,000). This is estimated to have equated to 2.4% of the UK manufacturing wage bill. The number of employees appeared, against general employment trends, to have dropped significantly from 2013 to 2014. This may not be the true position due to the provisional nature of the data – the 83,000 figure for 2013 may be a better reflection of the situation. Sub-sectors There has been a 6% increase in office and shop furniture manufacturing turnover since 2011. Whilst 2014 turnover was estimated to be just over £2b, there was no increase in value compared with the previous year.

Kitchen furniture manufacturing turnover had historically fallen significantly, from a high of £1.7b in 2008 to a low of £1.1b in 2011. After a couple of years of comparatively poor performance the corner appears to have been turned – turnover in 2014 increased to £1.7b, matching the sector’s 2008 high. This represents a 50% increase since 2011 and a 22% increase over the previous year. The mattress sub-sector has tended to be relatively stable compared with its counterparts, but over recent years has exhibited substantial growth. Manufacturing turnover has continued to increase since 2011, reaching £0.66b in 2014, a 29% increase over the period. The majority of this increase (20%) occurred between 2011 and 2013, although 2014 still saw a very healthy 7.1% increase over the previous year. Other furniture, which comprises all items not previously mentioned, plus parts, has grown less significantly. 2013 saw a slight recovery to £2.92b, and this recovery continued into 2014 when turnover reached £2.99b (a 2.5% increase on the previous year). Furniture exports from the UK, 2014

Furniture imports into the UK, 2014

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37

International trade Imports In 2014, imports rose to £4.8b from £4.6b the previous year, representing 47% of the home market. This home market, based on UK manufacturing sales, export and import data, was estimated to be £10.2b. Annual imports are predicted to be close to the £5b mark by the end of 2015. The majority of imports (almost £1.6b) originated from China, and its share of this market, having dropped slightly to 32% in 2013, recovered to 33% in 2014. Italy remained the second largest exporter of furniture to the UK, its share of the import market remaining at 11%. Poland overhauled Germany in the league table and supplied 10% of all imports (Germany supplied 9%). Other changes in the hierarchy saw the Czech Republic, Lithuania and Spain leapfrog France, and Brazil and Portugal appeared in the top 15 for the first time. Imports from the US appear to have fallen dramatically, from £141m in 2013 to £55m in 2014. Exports Furniture exports have remained relatively static since 2011, although the provisional £930m figure for 2014 is an improvement of 10% on the previous year. Initial indications for 2015 suggest that this improvement in export performance may not be sustained, and could fall back to about £867m. The UK export market traditionally targets the Republic of Ireland and the US, although in 2014 France and Germany both received 10% of exports, and the US only 9%. The total for the Republic of Ireland was 19% (£166m), compared with 17% the previous year. Exports to the EC totalled £531m in 2014 – an increase of £21m. Exports to the UAE, having grown in value the previous year, fell from £38m to £30m, and Russia – as might be expected due to its current economic position – only received £19m worth of furniture. Trade gaps The negative trade gap continued to widen, with increases in imports outstripping any small increases in exports. It reached £3.84b in 2014. The negative trade gap with China, the largest for the sector, increased to £1.57b. The main positive trade gap – as in previous years – was with the Republic of Ireland, which increased from £122m to £141m in 2014. After this, there was a number of countries with which the UK benefited from much smaller positive trade gaps, starting with the US at £31m, and followed by the UAE at £22m. In 2013 the trade gap with the US became negative for the first time in a number of years. The position, due to a decrease in imports, has now been reversed, and there was a positive trade surplus in 2014 of £31m

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RESOURCES Sales practices to ditch

THE AUTHOR

Kevin Cundiff is vice-president of retail for Fortegra, a single-source insurance services company that offers a range of specialty programme underwriting, credit protection, and warranty solutions. W fortegra.com

Six sales practices to ditch in 2016 You probably know which sales tactics are helping your numbers, but do you know which ones are costing you valuable sales? Fortegra’s Kevin Cundiff looks at six of the main offenders …

Just like making your brand attractive to customers, there are sure-fire ways you can push them straight out the door and into the arms of another furniture retailer. In fact, according to RightNow’s Customer Experience Report, 89% of consumers have stopped doing business with a company after a poor customer service experience. And, let’s be honest, many sales professionals don’t even know they’re the cause when it happens. You don’t want to be one of the retailers losing brand loyalty, do you? If your team is engaging in even one of these six bad sales practices, now is a great time to turn over a new leaf. Ditch these bad habits, keep customers happy and rack up more sales in 2016: 1. Leading with price Of course everyone will eventually want to know how much cash they’ll be dropping on that new couch. But that doesn’t mean you need to bring it up as soon as their eyes meet the merchandise. Leading with the product’s

value is a much better way to hook customers and make the sale. Once they see the value of the purchase, that price tag won’t matter quite as much. 2. Using jargon Throwing out too many design terms or using sales-ese can make customers uncomfortable, even if they know what you’re talking about. Try to use more approachable layman’s terms when selling. Technical speak may be second nature to you, but that doesn’t mean everyone else gets it. If customers don’t know what you’re talking about, why would they buy? 3. Providing too much information If a customer asks a question about a product, it’s obvious you should give them a full answer. But unless that customer is indicating they want more, there’s no need to drive the message into the ground. If you overload them with information, customers may feel overwhelmed, and more willing to walk away from a purchase.

“Technical speak may be second nature to you, but that doesn’t mean everyone else gets it. If customers don’t know what you’re talking about, why would they buy?”

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4. Giving up early Just because you get turned down after your first attempt to make a sale, doesn’t mean the customer won’t change their mind. Encourage a sale more than once when communicating with customers, and give them that second chance at a purchase. However, avoid being too pushy. There’s nothing worse to customers than an overly aggressive salesperson. 5. Not asking enough questions Does your team know what your customers actually want before you start trying to sell to them? Everyone’s tastes are different, so they may not be interested in the same products your previous customers were. Prepare questions that can help you identify their reasons for buying, budget and preferences. 6. Having to always be right There’s a reason the saying ‘the customer is always right’ has stuck around for so long, and no-one likes a know-it-all. Letting consumers feel knowledgeable about products can make them more comfortable and help ease them into a sale. Want an easy way to up your numbers in the new year? Ditching these off-putting practices is a great place to start

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39 FA B U LO U S N E W F U R N I T U R E , L I G H T I N G ART & GIFTS DEBUTING AT THE NEC

FEBLAND GROUP LTD

ARE NEXT EXHIBITING AT THE

7-11 FEBRUARY 2016 NEC BIRMINGHAM UK

Sun 7 - Weds 10 Feb : 9:00 - 6:00pm Thurs 11 Feb : 9:00 - 4:00pm

Plush Door Stops

Model Ships

Flocked Figurines

Mirrored Furniture

Glass Plates

Globe Lights

Wall Clocks

Nest of Tables

Dining Chairs

HALL 1, STAND B20 - A21 Febland Group Ltd Flag House, Ashworth Rd Marton, Blackpool, Lancashire FY4 4UN t : 01253 600 600 f : 01253 792 211 e : info@febland.co.uk www.febland.co.uk

Opening Hours Monday - Friday : 9:00 - 5:30 Saturday : 9:00 - 5:00 Sunday : 10:30 - 4:30

COME VISIT OUR SHOWROOM - OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK

Unique quality furniture Bluebone offers Bold Colours, Eclectic Vintage, Beach house, Retro, Rustic Pine or French Provence

County Retreat - Pathfinder Homes

bluebone

River Mill II, Park Road, Dukinfield Cheshire SK16 5PD. TEL.: 0161-330 8959, FAX.: 0161-330 8949 E-mail: sales@bluebone.co.uk Web: www.bluebone.co.uk

Occasional pieces Provence Bedroom Design-led Oak County Retreat - Pathfinder Homes

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County Retreat - Pathfinder Homes

Nando’s staff rec room - Hunters North

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PROFILE Besp-Oak

Besp-Oak is supporting its customers for the third year running by absorbing increased shipping and production costs to maintain a price freeze on all products.

Besp-Oak goes the extra mile Open by appointment to all members of the trade, Besp-Oak is hosting an in-house event from 1st-12th February, timed to conveniently coincide with this year’s Spring Fair which is taking place at the NEC just 10 minutes away. The showroom displays an offering which includes over 5000 products well suited to garden centres, furniture stores, hotels, bars, restaurants, cafes, holiday homes, rental properties, villas and much more. All products have been audited by the National Measurement Office and approved as EUTRcompliant confirming that the manufacturing supply chain is 100% legal in line with the European Timber Regulations. Open 9am-5:30pm on weekdays, free parking and on site catering is available to visitors who will receive a guided tour. Offering a wide choice, Besp-Oak can deliver in stock items direct within 10 working days. The company suggests trade customers should ask themselves if they are getting the best deal on their furniture and accessories as some of the UK’s most exclusive products are available to purchase at a fraction of recommended retail price. Indoor and outdoor furniture, freestanding kitchen, accessories, lighting and giftware are just some of the stock genres available to order on a wholesale basis. Besp-Oak is proud to be the original sellers of the genuine high grade oak collections Vancouver Premium and Vancouver Petite and also the Vancouver Expressions collection which features oak tops with units painted in a choice of seven

Outside Besp-Oak’s Midlands-based store

on-trend colours. For chairs and benches, English leather and a range of tartan fabrics are amongst the latest additions to this season’s offering as well as a choice of stylish interchangeable handles. Besp-Oak has firmly established itself as a brand of choice for over 500 retailers, interior designers and contractors worldwide. With one of the largest furniture and accessories stock holdings in the UK, the company boasts a 100,000ft² wholesale storage and distribution depot which is situated five minutes away from the M6.

Besp-Oak’s store interior

Potters Wheel Buffet and Hutch For small volumes, customers can receive wholesale trade prices with free delivery on accessories orders over £800 or furniture orders over £2000. If buying in volume, customers can receive factory direct prices by creating their own mixed container in 20ft, 40ft and 40ft high cube sizes. Supplying the trade on a container and wholesale basis, the Midlands-based operation offers home furnishing products that promise market-leading design and great value. Besp-Oak has a product and purchase solution to suit all needs. W besp-oak.com

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THE EVOLUTION OF VAN TRUCKSMITH™ is celebrating its 30 YEAR anniversary. Since we went into production in 1993, we have been helping you evolve your business with the Renault Master LoLoader™, Vauxhall Movano KneeHi™ and Fiat Ducato Canniloader™. For more information on these vehicles, contact our sales office on 01884 33001 opt.1 or email sales@trucksmith.co.uk On the web: www.loloader.co.uk www.kneehi.co.uk www.canniloader.co.uk

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PROFILE Kettle

The January Furniture Show saw a brand new look for Kettle Interiors as it rolled out a fresh stand design created to showcase the potential of its furniture collections. Simon Ainge, sales director, talks about the supplier’s 2016 introductions.

Kettle Interiors pulls out all the stops “Our new look stand at the January Furniture Show reflected our belief that bringing key items from the same collection together is the best way for homeowners to really see the potential of furniture when in store. It allows them to visualise how a particular piece, or a few items, will look in their home. By grouping together a few items in a roomset style approach, dressing with accessories and introducing soft furnishings it really is something that can make a difference to sales. “We opted for low walls to create separation between each collection in what is our biggest stand for quite some years. These low walls also demonstrated the impact our oak, pine, painted and brand new industrial look collections can bring in stores of all sizes. “As always we came armed with plenty of new items, which proved to be a huge hit with visiting retailers. We’ve expanded our Oakham collection with seven new items including a small cupboard, bench, hall bench, highboard and some really great kitchen island units with granite tops. These new items have really taken Oakham to another level and it continues to be one of our most popular oak collections. “From a stylistic perspective, the new 17-strong AB range marks quite a departure for us here at Kettle Interiors. The industrial look and steel frames of the collection have great contemporary appeal and this is only enhanced with the use of a really beautiful aged-effect solid oak. Quality too is first rate, with great details such as soft-close drawers and doors lifting AB into a range that LG living

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DG

demands significant attention. “With unusual but commercial items such as a large TV unit and highboard with built-in LED lighting, as well as more standard pieces, we’ve high hopes for AB and look forward to it finding a position all of its own within the market. “The show also saw us launch the LG range of classic-style oak. Adding to our already impressive array of this ever-popular wood, this 36-strong collection is set to hit the ground running. Capturing the essence of tradition, LG’s strong proportions and rustic detailing make it a hugely warming and appealing escape into great looking oak furniture that is sure to have a widespread fan base. “With some very large benches, tables, sideboards and an impressive highboard with internal lighting and soft close drawers throughout, this is a collection well-suited to PR dining chair

larger homes and the reception from visitors has been overwhelmingly positive. “Although seen by selected retailers at our in-house show back in October, this is the first time we’ve shown our new painted DG bedroom collection on a national platform as well. Already benefitting from a successful introduction in many stores, DG brings contrasting oak tops to its truffle shade finish, bringing a real dose of country style. Each piece in this 13-strong bedroom range comes supplied with optional wood or metal handles, allowing homeowners to add their own unique statement. “We also introduced the PR upholstered chair at our in-house event and again took it along to the January Furniture Show. The perfect accompaniment to many of our living and dining collections, this chair just goes to show we are focused not just on variety and value, but also exquisite detailing and timeless style. “With so many new items to see, one would be forgiven for forgetting that our service too has become one of envy in the industry and that we are not only continuing long relationships with retailers because of it, but welcoming many new ones too. “We hold more than ever UK stock and have extensive production and warehousing overseas, meaning we can meet the demands from retailers for quality furniture supplied quickly and efficiently. With our wholesale, stockist and container services, we really do believe we can provide retailers with quality furniture, incredible pricing and great service. There are more and more reasons to have Kettle Interiors as one of your major suppliers.” T 01536 444960

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43

New ranges unveiled soon from Pangeae‌

Working as a fair trade company & supplier to AIS members

Unit 8/9, Ashley Heath ind est, Ringwood Rd, Three legged cross, Wimbourne, Dorset. BH21 6QZ T: 01202-825959 | E: pangeae1@gmail.com

www.pangeae.co.uk Pangeae Advert USE.indd 1

Spring Fair Birmingham Hall 1 Stand E32/D33

21/01/2016 09:02

authe

i nt

c

dels.com o m MF134

Grand Club Trunk Bar

Maison et Objet Paris Hall 3 Stand E62/F61 Ambiente Hall 9.0 Stand E70

AM UK

Phone 01403-734999 info@am-uk.eu

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MF121

War Chest

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Furniture Here at Kettle Interiors we bring furniture for all styles. From traditional and contemporary oak to beautiful white painted furniture, classic pine bedroom and striking industrial aged oak, we’ve got every look covered so that you can bring your customers the very best in choice. Each item of furniture from our 398 strong collection shares one thing in common, excellent value, meaning that you can bring great style at surprisingly low prices. For 2016, we are introducing three new ranges that demonstrate just how versatile our collection has become. With the classic styling of LG and the country romance of DG painted bedroom furniture through to the striking AB industrial collection, we are leading the way in bringing you great furniture. Kettle Interiors is choice for all.

Container

Stockist

Wholesale

Direct mixed container delivered in just 6-8 weeks

Based on an average spend of ÂŁ2,500 per month delivered from UK stocks

ÂŁ500 minimum order for free delivery from UK stocks

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for all. Our service too is second-to-none, offering you complete flexibility no matter how big or small you may be. We’ve developed three ways to enjoy furniture from Kettle Interiors, so that you can make the most of our collection’s diversity, enjoying your very own hand-picked selection of beautiful furniture. The Wholesale service is ideal for retailers wanting to benefit from our furniture without commitment, offering fast delivery in the UK, free from orders of £500 or more. Then for those retailers who want to exploit the quality and value in our furniture, our Stockist service provides the same flexibility and fast UK delivery with improved pricing from an average spend of £2,500 per month. For the very best in value, the Container service brings incredible pricing delivered direct to you in just 6-8 weeks. Kettle Interiors is service for all.

www.kettleinteriorsagencies.com Container

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01536 444960

Stockist

sales@kettleinteriorsagencies.com Wholesale

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NEW

Featuring soft close drawers & doors

Spring/Summer

Container

Stockist

Wholesale

Direct mixed container delivered in just 6-8 weeks

Based on an average spend of ÂŁ2,500 per month delivered from UK stocks

ÂŁ500 minimum order for free delivery from UK stocks

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The AB Collection.

17 Items

Striking industrial looks make this contemporary furniture collection unique. Featuring aged effect solid oak and metal frames, this is a range that demands attention.

Chair AB-CH

1.8m Table AB-18T

Highboard with LED Lights AB-HB

£39.99

£189.99

£329.99

£45.00

£219.99

£385.00

£49.99

£249.99

£429.99

Standard Sideboard AB-STS

Lamp Table AB-LT

Standard TV Unit AB-STV

£199.99

£75.00

£169.99

£229.99

£87.50

£199.99

£259.99

£99.99

£225.00

www.kettleinteriorsagencies.com Container

FN_323 V18.indd 47

01536 444960

Stockist

sales@kettleinteriorsagencies.com Wholesale

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NEW

Featuring soft close drawers

Spring/Summer

Container

Stockist

Wholesale

Direct mixed container delivered in just 6-8 weeks

Based on an average spend of ÂŁ2,500 per month delivered from UK stocks

ÂŁ500 minimum order for free delivery from UK stocks

FN_323 V18.indd 48

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The LG Collection.

36 Items

Capturing the essence of tradition, this dining & occasional collection brings the warming and familiar overtones of classic style oak. Lovingly finished in a durable and natural style with soft close drawers.

Ladder Back Chair PU Seat LG-CHP

1.3m Butterfly Extending Table LG-13BET

Display Cabinet with Lights LG-DIS

£41.50

£195.00

£249.99

£46.50

£225.00

£289.99

£52.50

£257.50

£325.00

Small Cupboard LG-SCUP

Telephone Table LG-TEL

Small Wide Bookcase LG-SWBC

£125.00

£52.50

£115.00

£145.00

£59.99

£132.50

£162.50

£67.50

£149.99

www.kettleinteriorsagencies.com Container

FN_323 V18.indd 49

01536 444960

Stockist

sales@kettleinteriorsagencies.com Wholesale

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The DG Collection.

36 13 Items

This bedroom collection brings the appeal of painted furniture with contrasting oak top for a true twist on country style. Choose from metal or oak knobs supplied with every piece.

Metal & wood handles with every piece

Bedside Cabinet DG-BSC

2 Over 3 Chest DG-2O3

Full Hanging Wardrobe DG-FHR

£35.00

£135.00

£155.00

£39.99

£155.00

£179.99

£45.00

£175.00

£205.00

Container

Stockist

Wholesale

Direct mixed container delivered in just 6-8 weeks

Based on an average spend of £2,500 per month delivered from UK stocks

£500 minimum order for free delivery from UK stocks

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Introducing the PR Upholstered Button Back Dining Chair...

Introducing the Wicker Merchant storage & furniture collection...

A great match to many of our dining collections, this chair brings sophisticated style & supreme comfort.

This new brand brings beautiful and natural wicker baskets, storage units & furntiure.

£39.99

£45.00

£49.99

Call for your Wicker Merchant trade price list now!

See us at:

Now in Ireland with:

The Springfair

Decor Furniture

Sun 7 - Thu 11 Feb NEC, Birmingham Stand: 1B10-A11

02838 446000 / 02887 724472 www.decorfurnitureltd.com info@decorfurnitureltd.com

Spring/Summer 2016 Brochure & Price List now available. Call for your copy www.kettleinteriorsagencies.com Container

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01536 444960

Stockist

sales@kettleinteriorsagencies.com Wholesale

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LIVING ROOM

Cirrus, Flair Rugs

Mosaiq, Louis de Poortere

Following a successful launch at this year’s January Furniture Show, Flair Rugs (01457 850660) is enhancing its reputation as a manufacturer with strong focus on consumer research and trend development in design, continually looking to innovate. Latest release Cirrus epitomises Flair’s consistent introduction of high quality rugs and brings a premium touch and feel inspired by the appearance of cloud formations. Cirrus uses its sheen to present a striking colour palette that includes pastel blues, greys, creams and subtle metallic hues that can be worked seamlessly into an array of residential settings. Making use of the fine quality polyester, this extra deep pile is set to stand the test of time with great spring and resilience, meaning that Cirrus will not fall flat in years to come. A sophisticated twist on the established shaggy aesthetic, Cirrus is an ideal way to soften any interior with a timeless look, whether carpet, laminate or oak boards are found beneath. Available in three versatile sizes – 80 x 150cm, 120 x 170cm and 160 x 230cm – these hardwearing polyester rugs are as practical as they are striking. Cirrus can be combined

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seamlessly with the fresh floral watercolours of Sommer and indoor/outdoor flexibility of Decks to form a striking spring/summer 2016 collection. Placing modern twists on vintage classics is the 2016 mantra for premium rug producer Louis de Poortere (www.louisdepoortere. com) as it continues to take rug creativity to new levels, delivering design innovation and premium quality within each of its striking collections. A brand continually looking to evolve and improve, the de Poortere design hub has taken a bold step looking ahead to spring/ summer 2016 and beyond. Traditionally a vintage brand with classic intricate designs aplenty, for the new design season Louis de Poortere has incorporated contemporary twists on old favourites in a departure from the norm, with new collections Mad Men and Mosaiq. Holding designs inspired by the golden boys of the 60s responsible for some of America’s most recognisable brand images, Mad Men rugs are loud and make a statement in high-end residential applications. These high-gloss polyester and cotton chenille choices, woven onto jacquard Wilton

The Wicker Merchant

looms, are striking in weave and bold in colour. This is a collection of contrasts – straight and broken lines, dull and shiny yarns – each implemented with as much thought as the last. Joining Mad Men is sister collection Mosaiq, once more unmistakably de Poortere yet with a contemporary edge. Adding weight to an already-impressive portfolio, this new modern realm is further explored with an explosion of tones and textures. Louis de Poortere prides itself on keeping up with the latest in design trends and themes, despite its standing as a vintage brand taking inspiration from vintage sources. Mad Men and Mosaiq bring together the classic and the contemporary. Seeing that quality wicker home lifestyle products were often overpriced therefore limiting market appeal, Kettle Interiors has launched The Wicker Merchant (01536 444960), a range of wicker baskets, storage and furniture that is set to change this status quo. With a reputation for great value and quality backed by fast and reliable service, Kettle Interiors is aiming to apply its same successful recipe to wicker goods, >>>

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Alpha D


ALPHA D E S I G N S

ALPHA DESIGNS UPHOLSTERY LIMITED T: 01902 492937 F: 01902 493700 E: sales@alpha-designs.co.uk Unit 1, Stag Industrial Estate, Oxford Street, Bilston, Wolverhampton WV14 7HZ FN_323 V18.indd 53 Alpha Design 323 v2.indd 1

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Weybourne sofa arm detail, Wood Bros

Wood Bros’ Weybourne collection

Weybourne armchair, Wood Bros

Crest Leather

believing the natural appeal is one that is finding renewed desire from homeowners across the UK. The Wicker Merchant brings 91 items or sets across traditional wicker baskets, laundry and log baskets, pet baskets and houses, occasional storage furniture, trunks, trunk benches and furniture. The collection is a broad one and this is ideal for tailoring orders to exact requirements. One of the brand’s chief advantages is that it offers a fast and cost-effective delivery structure on orders of various sizes, meaning no bulky commitments should requirements be selective. Orders of £300 or more get free delivery, while those over £2500 receive an extra 10% discount. For retailers with smaller demands, any product suitable can be shipped on a 24-hour service for just £15. Larger customers can save with container pricing across the collection. Sales director Simon Ainge says: “Those already trading with us can jump straight in to The Wicker Merchant and we look forward to welcoming a new customer base that is yet to experience out service-driven approach. As usual, we are bringing some great lifestyle

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Mandal, Serene

and full product imagery making it easy to turn The Wicker Merchant into something very special in store. Crest Leather (0208 457 7129) is a multinational producer of high quality finished leather. Through its various operations across four continents, Crest Leather uses a combination of the latest technology and traditional artisanal techniques to ensure its range of leathers meet even those most demanding of requirements. The company currently owns and operates tanneries in Brazil, Italy and Thailand and has further operations in London, Manchester and the USA with a total workforce wellover over 800 personnel. Every year Crest Leather processes over 1m hides and moves thousands of containers across six continents. Wood Bros (www.woodbros.co.uk) has paired country-style Chatsworth furniture with the Weybourne upholstery group which was introduced last year. The chunky turnings and simple metal handles featured on Chatsworth ideally complement the traditional sofas. Chatsworth is available in warm Flaxen and also, new for 2016, Fumed Oak, a more

Lebus Upholstery

sophisticated grey oak finish which offers a completely different look and feel. Weybourne has an extensive fabric swatch and an option of a wood detail on the arm which is available in all Wood Bros timber colours. Serene Living’s (0121 505 0270) Recliner collection combines stylish design and comfort, presenting a broad choice to meet differing tastes and requirements. Mandal is one of the collection’s 360 degree swivel designs in cotton fabric. Generous cushioning, soft upholstery and an adjustable recline makes this striking model – available in cream and mink – so comfortable. A striking five star wooden base in a honey finish completes the look. Lebus Upholstery (www.lebus.co.uk), which was established in 1840, has become one of the largest furniture manufacturers of UK-produced upholstery, based in North Lincolnshire. It has a modern purpose-built 250,000ft² factory supplying a wide range of furniture retailers across the UK and Ireland. The present site is over 5.5 acres and is one of the largest one-site operations of its kind in the country. A dedicated workforce, coupled with a strong forward-thinking management team, ensures that all Lebus products >>>

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Comfort

Style

Sophistication

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For more information contact:

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e. sales@lebus.co.uk

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AB Highboard with lights, Kettle Interiors

are designed and manufactured to high standards. All frames are made in-house from selected seasoned hardwoods and composite materials with all joints glued, screwed and pinned for triple strength and long lasting rigidity. Lebus creates all of its own exclusive designs using both in-house and freelance designers. This, coupled with investment in the latest computer technology and its own foam and fibre manufacturing facilities, ensures that quality control and efficiency go hand in hand to give customers quality and value for money. The striking industrial look of the AB collection breaks new ground for Kettle Interiors (01536 444960) as the supplier looks to exert its reputation for quality and value upon a new sector. The striking AB Highboard with lights is

Tiffany, Febland

Springcore, Fibreline

a prime example, a statement-making piece of furniture that provides style as well as a practical solution. In a metal frame and agedeffect oak, the AB Highboard features softclose doors and elegant efficient LED lighting designed to highlight whatever resides on its glass shelf. The 17-strong AB range is now available through Kettle Interiors’ fast and efficient wholesale, stockist and container packages with free delivery across the UK in just a few days starting from £500. To make space in its warehouses, which are full with great new lines, Febland (01253 600600) has marked down a large number of fine pieces. The company is renowned for its ranges of lighting and furniture, but also has a large selection of artwork and gifts. Many of these will be marked down in Febland’s February sales with the hope of attracting

Growing Business?

new customers with unique style and taste. Febland delivers nationwide on ist own vehicles, and varnishes and lacquers hard wood dining chairs and sofas, all upholstered in-house. What’s more, the company has a large selection of wood colours and fabrics, and its showroom is open seven days a week. Springcore is a new development from Fibreline (01535 606846), in which small pocket springs are inserted into a shaped foam core. For the first time a spring foam cushion can now be made in almost any shape or size, without the noise of springs moving against each other – an advantage over conventional spring cushions. Springcore has a low flat profile much requested for some of today’s retro styles. Along with the Encore Feather and Fibre range it comes with a full four-year guarantee against sagging

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LIVING ROOM Jual Furnishings

Jual Furnishings has come a long way since it first opened for business in 2006, starting out supplying the AV industry with conventional TV stands. Ten years later, and the company’s unique products are undeniably recognisable – to celebrate reaching this milestone, Jual plans to run a number of promotions throughout 2016, starting with a price rollback …

Jual celebrates 10 years of unique products and service

JF700

Alongside the promotions outlined on pages 62 and 63, Jual introduced two new ranges at the end of last year – JF700 occasional and PC700 home office. JF700 comprises TV stands, coffee table, lamp table, console and a nest of tables, all of which feature Jual’s signature curved wood and are finished in a warm real walnut veneer. For PC700, Jual has succeeded in producing practical and stylish pieces of furniture to suit the expanding home office market. The range is available in both ash and white ash, to appease those with traditional tastes as well as those who prefer a more modern look. The ranges are finished off with solid ash spindle legs, which give all the products a slight retro feel – again appealing to a wide range of people, including those who remember retro the first time around, as well as the younger generation. “Sales of the new ranges really have taken

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PC700 in ash us by surprise,” says Julie Powell, one of Jual’s directors. “We are thrilled with the success of them so far – and with numerous new designs in the pipeline, 2016 could be a fantastic year for us.” Jual’s success over the past 10 years has been largely down to its next-workingday-delivery service, combined with the company’s ability to continually introduce ranges that offer retailers and consumers something different. “Ten years of business is certainly

PC700 in white ash something we are proud of, especially considering the difficult economic climate we have been through for a fair portion of that time,” comments director Alf Powell. “We would never have reached this point if it were not for our customers, who have been fantastic. I would just like to say how thankful we are for their business, and I hope we can build on our relationships for another 10 years.” T 01443 816982 W jualfurnishings.co.uk

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LIVING ROOM Panacea Furniture

Panacea is committed to providing an all-round service backed up by extensive research and knowledge of the furniture market.

Panacea’s comprehensive offering Panacea’s striking stand at the January Furniture Show was custom-built, as one of the company’s founders, Ryan Lucas, explains: “It’s all about the smallest of details and demonstrating just how serious we are about not only the quality of our products but also the commitment we have to delivering service excellence.” In addition to the seamless end-to-end service currently utilised by a number of retailers, Ryan is keen to demonstrate how other retailers are picking and choosing various elements of the available services to create a bespoke offering that best suits their business requirements. “Whether it’s our storage, distribution, white glove delivery service or simply fantastic wholesale prices of an excellent range of products there’s something to suit everyone,” he states. The acquisition of a highly experienced, respected and connected team of agents with full UK coverage has propelled this business plan forward considerably. “We had at first thought we would need to spend time reintroducing the Diamond brand to the UK on a volume scale before then introducing our premium line of full leather, consistently comfortable products, however the acquisition of these agents makes it possible to market our premium range right from the

Cresta start,” Ryan says. So serious was Panacea to take the thoughts and views of its agents into consideration that the company sent them to the factory in Thailand, as Ryan recounts: “It made complete sense. These guys have long standing reputations to consider and we wanted them to see first hand the quality control, the quality of products used, the care

and attention taken in the production and to see the ongoing research and development so that they can present our products with the utmost of confidence.” In addition, the knowledge the agents have of the market at ground level was instrumental when the brand chose the initial range to show at Birmingham. Panacea has a range of premium quality, full leather products at competitive prices backed up by a desire for service excellence and a commitment to immediate delivery on its core range. W panaceafurniture.co.uk

Champagne

Lincoln

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Normandie

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BEDS & BEDR0OM

T

i Empress 5000, Sweet Dreams

Adventure, Sweet Dreams

Sweet Dreams’ (01282 830033) fabricupholstered, British-made bedframes have proved a major success, especially for offering an option of two integral large drawers. Five of the latest models feature the optional builtin drawers – sleighbed Monet, luxury Renoir, Adventure and Degas and elegantly-styled Aura. Two other models, Gloria and Suranne, are now also offered with optional drawers. All the beds come in three sizes – 135cm, 150cm and 180cm – plus feature a sprung

slatted base, and are offered with a wide choice of fabrics. Adventure, Renoir and Degas also offer a choice of diamante or self-covered button embellishment, an option extended to Gloria and surround-sound Verve. Sweet Dreams displayed its acclaimed topend Royal Pillowtop collection at the January Furniture Show. The four divans all sport pocket springs in the main mattress and a pillowtop with its own mini-spring system. In Sovereign 6000, the premier model, the main

mattress contains 4000 pocket springs and the pillowtop 2000 mini-springs. Luxurious fillings are used in other mattresses within the collection, with Empress 5000 featuring latex and Princess 4000 featuring Sweet Dreams’ UK-exclusive Breathe Gel strips. Quality finishing to mattresses and bases characterises the collection. Royal Pillowtop beds are sold with branded footmats and pillowcases for shop floor models. >>>

Don’t Run Your Next High-Impact Sale

Yourself

Doing so could cost you far more than you’ll save. A high-impact sale event, utilizing the time-proven, copyrighted Lynch sale plan will double the results you can get on your own. Don’t risk your next sale. Choose the leading professional in the sale event industry, the Lynch Sales Company. To learn more, call Gareth Price today for a complete outline, including a copy of our easy-to-understand, one-page contract, or visit www.LynchSales.co.uk

MORE THAN 100 YEARS OF INTEGRITY AND RESULTS Serving the U.S., Canada and the U.K. Contact Gareth Price • Tel: +44 (0) 1243 378369 • www.LynchSales.co.uk Copyright 2016 Lynch Brothers Licensing Corporation

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The secret to a healthier lifestyle

is a better nights sleep.

The Harmony Collection. Trust Slumberland and invest in your health and wellbeing. Featuring the innovative Affinity Comfort System™ for the perfect balance of comfort and support:  AffinityTM Foam – 30x more breathable than memory foam.  AffinityTM Pocket Springs – adapt to the pressure of your body.  Affinitex Top Layer – innovative Actipro® component to neutralise bad bacteria.

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BEDS & BEDROOM My Natural mattress in cashmere, Myer’s

Naples, Serene

Serene’s (0121 505 0270) Precious Metals collection presents a series of designs inspired by the Edwardian and Victorian eras – eleven models that capture aspects of the traditional and contemporary to breathe new life into modern day bedroom design. With impressive proportions, hand-poured castings and pressed steel decorative touches, Godiva is available in an antique silver or antique brass finish and in three sizes – 135, 150 and 180cm – each with a birch veneered slatted base for optimum comfort. An impressive high headboard and low foot-end makes Serene’s Emily a striking bedstead in the hugely popular fabric collection. Emily is available in mint, latte and graphite with a choice of four leg finish options – mahogany, ebony, walnut and natural. The Faux & Leather collection by Serene comprises bedsteads, sofa beds and

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Emily, Serene

headboards, harnessing aspects of the traditional and contemporary. Naples is a comfortable, stylish sofa bed created using a combination of bonded and faux leather. Top-notch craftsmanship is evident throughout – a simple pull-out mechanism effortlessly converts this two-seater into a small double bed, while quality upholstery, plentiful padding and a soft foam mattress makes it a versatile addition to the home. As with the wider collection, the faux leather on Naples receives numerous treatments to help make it easy maintain and look good for longer. Naples is available in black, brown and cream. The Myer’s (www.myersbeds.co.uk) brand has undergone a significant overhaul, the mattresses, divan bases and headboards in the range enjoying numerous enhancements in a bid to help them stand apart from the competition.

Godiva, Serene

These include: the implementation of ballbearing drawer runners, a high-end feature that is set to reduce the problems caused by loose drawers in transit; taller spring units, improving the look and feel of the mattresses; improved edge zoning; added probiotic treatment; and the application of upholstery fabrics instead of ticking on headboards. “We’ve added further value to this alreadystrong value brand,” says Steinhoff UK Beds’ design and development director, Richard Naylor. “We looked at what our customers wanted that wasn’t already on the market – and the developments have been very well received.” The brand’s identity has also been transformed, the PoS featuring simplified language and presentation to better appeal to today’s consumer. “Just because it’s a value brand, there’s no reason Myer’s shouldn’t be an aspirational product,” concludes Richard

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Furnitur


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BEDS & BEDROOM Slumberdream

Bed manufacturer Slumberdream has been producing high-quality beds since 1991, and has grown to become a major supplier to the bedding trade.

Slumberdream’s success story

Amber, Slumberdream

With a 100,000ft² premises and more than 50 products in its portfoilio, Slumberdream enjoyed a positive year in 2015, seeing its customer base grow and business increase considerably. Following a successful year, Slumberdream has recently acquired several new delivery vehicles, including 7.5 and 12t wagons and trailers, which will help the business to maintain the high level of service that its clients expect. Slumberdream has now split its product ranges into different brands to give a clear indication of their position in the marketplace. What’s more, the company has invested in creating fresh products and establishing a strong new website, which displays Slumberdream’s new Slumbaflex vaccuum-packed mattresses. The company used the January Furniture Show to present its high-end mattress brands Sleepking and Healththerapy. T 0121 773 6669

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BEDS & BEDROOM Trend Interiors

Trend Interiors offers value, simplicity and quality, with added credibility being part of the Mereway Group, a respected British company that celebrates 30 successful years in business this year.

Trendy bedroom solutions

Lift-up ottoman storage bed

Trend Interiors will be unveiling an enhanced range of fitted bedrooms at KBB Birmingham this March alongside a new sliding wardrobe range. There will be a selection of new colours for some of the bestselling ranges such as the gloss Ava and Ava Plus and a new matt foil slab collection with a scalloped handle, Orla, available in twelve finishes. Graham Jones, sales and marketing director at Mereway and Trend Interiors, gives his opinion on the evolving bedroom sector: “The bedroom market is coming of age as homeowners seek a designer look, just as they do in the kitchen and the bathroom. The range of options available in the fitted bedroom market has expanded, offering more choice and extensive range content. “Historically the traditional painted and panelled look was most popular with standard wardrobes, dressing tables and chest of drawer options. Recent developments have seen an explosion of not just colours, textures and styles but a totally new approach that coordinates bedside tables, beds and occasional furniture. More sophisticated hidden storage options and

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lighting allows consumers to personalise their bedroom design like never before. “Current stand out trends in bedrooms include the growth in synchronised MFC finishes. Modern technology has enabled the production of beautiful wood grained finishes with texture and variety that are much closer to the real thing, making these very popular. In terms of colour, grey continues to lead in both matt and gloss and different shades of grey. “In terms of products, sliders are surging ahead in popularity. In the past a sliding wardrobe door was considered to be a solution to a small room, rather than a preferred option. This has changed and there is a growing demand for sliding wardrobes because they present a sleek solution to bedroom storage and are available in a wide range of colours and finishes.” The new Trend sliding wardrobe collection includes nine styles with 39 different door options. The cabinets can be colour coordinated and there is a comprehensive range of accessories available including lighting and matching beds.

Slider wardrobe The Ottoman storage bed is set to make an impact at KBB. This bed has a lift–up mechanism that has been ergonomically designed so that it is safe to handle and practical for one person to operate with ease. Each size of bed has different piston sizes to ensure optimum performance. The bed can also be set midway for ease of use when making the bed. The headboard, frame and bedside furniture can be coordinated with the bedroom design in one simple step. T 0800 028 4466 W trendinteriors.co.uk

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Sen Furniture presents our new living room ranges, with sleek minimalist designs our new products provide a touch of sophistication to any home. Featuring stylish and versatile designs as well as a pristine look and feel, the quality of our new ranges speaks for itself. Here at Sen we pride ourselves in offering outstanding customer service with which we offer an on time daily dispatch service, weekly deliveries to all counties and drop ship to any UK postcode.

Contact us on: 01978 660768

www.senfurniture.co.uk E-mail: sales@senfurniture.co.uk Sen Furniture Unit 26-29, Abenbury Way, Wrexham, LL13 9UZ

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DINING ROOM

Kielder, Gallery Direct

Bexley dining table with Marlow dining chairs, Serene

The Kielder dining table, chairs and bench from Gallery Direct (01795 439159) were launched at the January Furniture Show as part of the business’ new Spring/ Summer 2016 Lookbook. This collection is an understated range that offers simple, contemporary and fresh design. Crafted from solid oak, using the planked and jointed build method, Kielder creates defined lines for a stylish design solution. The whole range is enhanced by the mellowed oak with white hues, to induce a sense of calm and serenity, taking influence from Scandinavian style. Alongside the dining range, the collection has a variety of living and bedroom furniture offering practicality and iconic design. The Kielder collection demonstrates

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Knightsbridge dining chair, Serene

craftsmanship and simple elegance, with strong forms and high quality for the home. A broad selection of colourways makes introducing Serene’s (www.serene.co.uk) Marlow dining chair into the home an easy thing to do. The new dining collection from Serene has been designed with the enjoyment of modern life in mind, with tables in oak and walnut finishes and chairs in tactile fabrics and supple faux leathers. Marlow’s subtle curves and sharp lines are eye-catchingly striking and bring this chair design to life in shiraz, bark and pearl fabric or black, brown and cream faux leather. Legs on the Marlow dining chair look striking in oak and help seal the look. This is a comfortable, stylish place to sit, relax, dine and entertain, being suited to most tastes

and decors. The Knightsbridge dining chair is a design that successfully blends aspects of the traditional and the contemporary to suit a wide variety of homes. Striking fabric tones are punctuated by contrasting nails, which add definition and finishing detail, to complement the oak legs of this stylish chair design. Core Products (01738 630555) has started off 2016 with an expanded collection of flatpacked furniture encompassing more contemporary designs which fuse plastics, metal and painted finishes into their design. Of these, Aspen stands out from the crowd with its clean, contemporary look and fusion of vibrant colours. It has a mix of tables, chairs and casual living cabinet furniture. >>>

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Aspen, Core Products

Developed especially to meet the demand for compact casual living at affordable prices, the Aspen range offers a variety of tables in arctic white pain and natural beech wood finish. These are contrasted with chairs in a selection of colours which combine plastic, fabric, natural beech and metal. All are robustly constructed and are ideal for busy family homes. All is complemented by a selection of sideboards, bookcases and TV units which are worldwide-exclusive to Core Products. Aspen, like all of Core’s ranges, is available for store or direct to home delivery with no minimum order requirement. An express next-day service is also available, full details of which can be found in the new Core

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Oakham Large Island, Kettle Interiors

Products 2016 product portfolio. The ever-popular Oakham collection from Kettle Interiors (01536 444960) has been expanded with the launch of seven new items for 2016, including two impressive kitchen island units. Topped with granite and storage aplenty including a handy wine rack – on the large size only – the Large Island and Small Island are real highlights for the Oakham dining and occasional collections. With the familiar rustic oak of this impressive collection these units are stylish and have quality running throughout. Both island units are available through wholesale, stockist and container packages, with fast delivery from UK stocks. The new

Furniture World

items feature in the Spring/Summer 2016 brochure now available from Kettle Interiors Furniture World (www.furnitureworlduk. com) manufactures solid pine and melamine furniture, its aim to supply quality furniture to its customers and continue to grow. The company has new solid pine products this year, and produces them with no shortcuts no money saving tactics. Six colours are available in both pine and melamine items. All Furniture World’s pieces are ready to use straight away, and the company uses casters which make the furniture easy to transport, with 3x35mm contract hinges on each door. Furniture World’s solid pinetopped wardrobe in grey is the company’s bestseller

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Full pag


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Designed to work... Built to last.

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Grey is the new black

Give your customers a new way to express themselves with Vancouver Petite in Downpipe After many years of success with the Vancouver Petite® Expressions collection, we would like to introduce to you a stunning new colour which is guaranteed to spice up your offering this winter.  The new Downpipe colour is an exquisite matt grey with a hint of blue. Combined with the original Vancouver Petite design in natural Oak, this new option will allow your customers to inject style into any occasional or dining home setting. Downpipe is just one of seven colours available – others include French Grey, Cornish Cream, Linen, Oak, Brick Lane and Potter’s Wheel – and it works well with our oak tops with satin chrome handles/knobs. It is available to view now in our recently refurbished Coventry showroom, open Mon-Fri 9am until 5pm. For more information and to book your showroom visit, please call Hanna on +44(0)24 76 632148.

FN_323 V18.indd Besp-Oak Furniture78 Advert.indd 1

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Downpipe only by

Ringway House, Hill Street, Coventry, CV1 4AN t: +44 (0)2476 632148 f: +44(0)2476 231628 sales@besp-oakfurniture.co.uk

Visit

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www.besp-oak.c om

to find out more

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DESIGNER In Design – Yard Sale Project

Yard Sale Project is the collaboration between Cairn Young, an industrial designer, and Ian Spencer, a cabinetmaker. Together they create one-off and small batch pieces of furniture that combine Cairn’s unique design skills with Ian’s talent for bringing them to life.

In Design: Cubrick cabinet, Yard Sale Project “The combination of a practical and conceptual approach can produce exciting outcomes and solve problems that seem unsolvable”

Training/achievements: Ian has a first class degree in Furniture Design & Craftsmanship from Bucks New University, and Cairn has lectured at the Royal College of Art in London. E info@yardsaleproject.london “The Cubrick cabinet combines bespoke precision-engineered components and lustrous fabrics, finished with meticulous craftsmanship”

“Cubrick would be perfect as a cocktail cabinet that adds glamour to a party or as a talking point”

“It is both a tall cabinet with numerous compartments and a multi-faceted cubed revelation, with 20 square interlocking storage units”

“It is available made to order in any coloured lacquer finish, with a complementing or contrasting lining of Impala material”

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5 ESSENTIAL WAYS TO MAXIMISE YOUR SALES AND PROFIT

• ADVERTISING – Most advertising does not work, so if81

CASA BELLA FURNISHINGS Manufacturers of inspired fabric sofas & chairs

yours isn’t, stop wasting your money now and re-design your advertising campaigns using a benefits-orientated-style. Call Greenwood for effective know-how. DON’T GO copywriting AHEAD AND BOOK

GREENWOOD NOW, UNLESS YOU

• PRODUCTS – BeIT’S ruthless with your precious floor space. KNOW RIGHT FOR YOU…

If a product or collection is not pulling its weight after being “York Was Drowning… the Police Closed the Street given a fair chance to shine, then clear it and replace it with a and Told Everyone to Stay Away. The phones & better performing line. Test and measure the selling potential card machines were down, yet, we took two Months of all your products in a Greenwood Sale. Business in the first week of our 3rd Greenwood Sale! Martyn Macdonald, Director, Macdonalds of York

• SELLING SKILLS - Get good at selling.

Most retailers

“Our Seventh Greenwood equalled a remarkable don’t bother with a proper salesSale process or sales training. The 35% of our annual turnover during the three weeks!” successful ones do! Invest time and money in quality sales Philip Heath, Dir. of Trading, Sturtons & Tappers.

know-how. Call Greenwood to arrange an effective sales training “Our course. Third Greenwood Event is well on the way to

The Cambridge suite in The Vintage Collection by J.Brown - Suites from £449-£999 - New designs and fabrics for 2016 - Made to measure and bespoke service

www.casabellafurnishings.co.uk Tel: 01254 661661 | 07720 073043 Fax: 01254 661802 Email: casa.bella@btconnect.com

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being our best ever - proof that Greenwood Events COMPETITIONreally – Check your competition do consistently work!” to find out what Nicky Gilligan, Owner, Liberty Furnishings & to out-do they are offering. Avoid all-out price wars. Be sure Carpets, Newtown

your competition on the most relevant beneficial USP’s including choice, quality, value and service. Call Greenwood to mystery shop your competitors. DISCOVER THE POWER OF

GREENWOOD SALES…

• PROMOTION – Promote your business effectively. Every As literally hundreds of quality independent retailers,

good retailer Tesco to and Harrod’s Consider using a based from all over the UK Irelanddoes. know very well, the benefits holding a ‘Greenwood Sale’ are many. ‘Greenwood’ salesof promotion to increase sales, turn stock into cash and win future market share, while protecting your profit Firstly, your sales event will be a financial success in at the same time. Call Greenwood! 20/01/2016 12:22

itself – WHATEVER THE WEATHER! Plus, you’ll generate instant cash flow, fill your order book and clear your redundant stock – with good margin maintained. And, longer term benefits include increased market share due to the positive publicity created by the event. It’s also very exciting – and your team will love to see the business doing so well.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT GREENWOOD SALES... Take a look at our website or call us now on 01625 521010, Find an Oute More Greenwood Sales. Takecall a look at to or, send mailAbout enquiry, and we’ll gladly you our website or call us now on 01565 650101, or, send an discuss the exciting possibilities we can offer you, e-mail enquiry, and we’ll gladly contact you to discuss without obligation. the exciting possibilities we can offer you, without obligation.

We are now booking events right across the UK and Ireland for the BOOKING rest of 2013 on aFOR first2016/17 come first served basis. NOW - CALL TODAY Book your sales event01565 early650101 to guarantee exclusivity for your business.

GREENWOOD RETAIL LTDLTD GREENWOOD RETAIL Britain’s Leading Experts in Retail Sales Promotion since 2002

Britain’s Leading Experts in Retail Sales Promotion sales@greenwoodretail.com

www.greenwoodretail.com

1 Wilmslow House, Grove Way, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AG sales@greenwoodretail.com www.greenwoodretail.com Greenwood Advert.indd 1 FN_323 V18.indd 81

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Further Reading On the web this month:

Do you have a story to share? To contribute, call the editorial desk on 01424 776105 or email victoria@gearingmediagroup.com

The Furniture News website is constantly updated with fresh stories. Visit www.furniturenews.net to access the latest unique content, or sign up to the weekly newsletter

Are you looking to place product before the UK’s buyers? To advertise or submit product advertorials, call the sales team on 01424 776100, or email sam@gearingmediagroup.com or trisha@gearingmediagroup.com. Do you wish to receive a copy of the magazine every month? You can subscribe to receive the magazine monthly by emailing subscriptions@gearingmediagroup.com. On the move? To read issues of the magazine on your mobile device, you can download the updated Furniture News app for free from the Apple App Store or Google Play.

News: Kozee Sleep owner found guilty of human trafficking

Keep up to date You can also sign up to receive free access to the digital edition each month, as well as the weekly Furniture News e-newsletter, at www.furniturenews.net/magazine – or email sam@gearingmediagroup to be signed up automatically. Don’t forget to follow the Furniture News Twitter feeds, @FurnitureNewsED and @Victoria_FNmag, to keep up with the latest news and opinions from the team.

News: Retailer Oka opens new store in Bath

Furniture News is an invaluable resource for those operating in the UK domestic furniture and furnishings sector – but it’s just one of the titles published by Gearing Media Group.

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Those involved in the contract furnishings market should take a look at Hospitality Interiors magazine (www.hospitality-interiors.net), while anyone seeking furniture manufacturing machinery or supplies should check out Furniture Production (www.furnitureproduction.net).

In next month’s issue:

January Furniture Show Review | The winners of The Furniture Awards 2016 Rob Scarlett meets designer Matt Arquette | Fair Comment with Design Shanghai

FN_323 V18.inddFeb 8216.indd 1 Further Reading

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16 14:55

Latex foam bedding products distributor

• Latex Cores • Latex Comfort Sheets • Latex Pillows • Finished Latex Products • No minimum order quantity • Fast delivery • Flexible terms • Competitive prices

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Profile for Gearing Media Group Ltd

Furniture News #323  

The essential guide to the UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade

Furniture News #323  

The essential guide to the UK domestic furniture and furnishings trade