BedTimes JANUARY 2010
THE BUSINESS JOURNAL FOR THE SLEEP PRODUCTS INDUSTRY
The economy in 2010 When will credit start to flow & consumers begin to buy again?
ISPA EXPO 2010 preview & trip planner Careful contract writing helps avoid legal traps Supporting good causes is good for companies
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16 What’s ahead in 2010?
After a steep decline, the economy appears to be gradually turning around. Economists and analysts are cautiously optimistic about the forecast for the overall economy and mattress industry sales this year.
26 Avoiding legal traps
Carefully writing your company’s contracts and ensuring that they include a few key clauses can save you time and money in the event of a dispute.
31 ISPA EXPO 2010
The biggest show devoted to mattress industry machinery, components, supplies and services is March 3-6 in Charlotte, N.C. BedTimes makes it easy for you to plan your trip and register.
13 Company Profile
In the past four years and under the leadership of Kevin Coleman, Latex International has transformed itself from a supplier of foam to the mattress industry into a sales and marketing company focused on innovative products for both manufacturers and retailers.
71 Cost Management
Chances are that someone owes your company money. What can you do to get those outstanding invoices paid? How can you craft policies to deal with such problems in the future?
5 Editor’s Note 7 Front Matter 10 Leadership Lessons 53 Industry News 67 ISPA News 68 Industry Conference 75 Employee Relations 79 Newsmakers 82 ISPA Advocacy 84 Classifieds 85 Calendar 86 Advertisers Index 88 The Last Word BedTimes | January 2010 |
Resolve to save money in the new year by using SABA water-based adhesives
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Since we began working with SABA our adhesive costs have come down almost 20%. Using their monitoring system we can now track our costs and make adjustments faster. We also don’t have all the messy overspray that wasted adhesive and caused problems for our operators. We are very happy with the professional service we have received and would recommend SABA to others in the bedding industry.
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EDITOR IN CHIEF Julie A. Palm 336-727-1889 firstname.lastname@example.org SENIOR WRITER Barbara Nelles 336-856-8973 email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS Mike Christiansen Donna LaMar & Betsy Laney Phillip M. Perry Rhonda R. Savage Larry Wilson Dorothy Whitcomb ART DIRECTOR Stephanie Belcher 336-201-7475 firstname.lastname@example.org Vice President of Sales Kerri Bellias 336-945-0265 email@example.com Ad Production & CIRCULATION manager Debbie Robbins 336-342-4217 firstname.lastname@example.org COPY EDITOR Margaret Talley-Seijn BedTimes deadlines Editorial deadlines for the Industry News and Newsmakers sections of the March issue of BedTimes are Monday, Feb. 1. The March issue is the ISPA EXPO 2010 show issue, which has bonus on-site distribution at the show. Volume 138 Number 1 BedTimes (ISSN 0893-5556) is published monthly by the International Sleep Products Association. Periodicals postage paid at Alexandria, Va., and additional mailing offices. Editorial and advertising offices 126 Parkview Lane, Reidsville, NC 27320 Phone 703-683-8371; Fax 703-683-4503 Administrative and ISPA offices 501 Wythe St., Alexandria, Va. 22314-1917 Phone 703-683-8371; Fax 703-683-4503 Postmaster Send address changes to BedTimes, 501 Wythe St., Alexandria, Va. 22314-1917 Contents © 2010 by the International Sleep Products Association. Reprint permission obtainable through BedTimes.
Editor’sNote Goodbye McMansions & big mattress sales?
f there has been an inescapable housing trend in the past two decades, it’s been the rise of the McMansion, built en masse in newly created suburbs and exurbs that turn cropland into house farms. Flying across the United States or driving through any of its major cities, you can’t miss them: oversized, multistory homes with overly gabled roofs outside and great rooms inside. McMansions have been good for the mattress industry. Homeowners tended to furnish them well, buying new bedding for the master bedroom, if not all the sleeping spaces. The large rooms have encouraged the purchase of kingsize mattresses for master bedrooms and queen-size models for children’s bedrooms and guest rooms. How things can change in a just a year or two. It appears the recent collapse of the housing market is being accompanied by the crumpling of the McMansion. In a blog on the consumer finance Web site, Walletpop.com, Amy Pyle previews “The Home of the Future: Smaller, Simpler, More Affordable.” “Homeowners,” she writes, “are looking to slim down, hoping for less space to heat, cool and clean, and cheaper mortgage payments.” She cites a CNN poll in which 69% of respondents said they thought homes had gotten too big, as well as comments from Kermit Baker, an economist at the American Institute for Architects, who reported in the fall “that while people want a home office more than ever… special-function rooms such as home theaters, exercise rooms, guest wings and three-car garages have become less popular.” Another amenity homeowners are increasingly willing to give up, Pyle writes, is the big master bedroom with big master bathroom.
Pyle also points to a survey by the National Association of Home Builders. In 2004, 37% of homeowners said that, if their funds were limited, they would rather have a smaller home built with higher quality materials than a large home with fewer amenities. By 2007, that number had increased to 58%. If this trend takes hold and these smaller-is-better preferences remain after the economy rebounds, mattress manufacturers may not only have to adjust to a much different marketplace but also will have to rethink mattress design (lower, simpler profiles?) and possibly even dimensions (more queens and fulls instead of kings?). Deadline reminders The editorial deadlines for the Industry News and Newsmakers sections of the March BedTimes are Monday, Feb. 1. The March issue is the ISPA EXPO 2010 show issue, which has bonus on-site distribution at the show in Charlotte, N.C. If your company has EXPO-related news, make sure to submit it by Feb. 1. Email the information and photos to email@example.com. BT
Julie A. Palm BedTimes | January 2010 |
FrontMatter Supporting good causes is good for business Survey: Consumers worldwide lean toward socially responsible brands
espite the difficult global economy, consumers around the world still are spending money with companies and brands that support “good causes,” according to the annual Edelman “goodpurpose” Consumer Study. Global public relations agency Edelman surveyed more than 6,000 people in 10 countries and found that 57% of respondents said a company or brand has recently earned their business because it has been doing its part to support good causes. And more than two-thirds (67%) said they would switch brands if another brand of similar quality supported a good cause. Some 83% of respondents said they are willing to change consumption habits if it can help make the
world a better place to live. More specifically, 70% would prefer to live in an eco-friendly house than a big house and 69% would rather buy a brand that supports the livelihood of local producers than a designer brand. “People all over the world are now wearing, driving, eating and living their social purpose as sustained engagement with good causes becomes a new criterion for social status and good social behavior,” says Mitch Markson, Edelman chief creative officer, president of its brand consulting group and founder of “goodpurpose.” “This gives companies and brands associated with a worthy cause an opportunity to build long-term relationships with consumers.” The study findings suggest that in both struggling and rebounding
economies, brands will continue to benefit from identifying and contributing to a positive social purposes that makes sense for their business. About two-thirds (64%) of people globally said they would recommend a brand that supports a good cause, up from 52% in 2008. In addition, 63% of respondents are looking to brands and companies to make it easier for them to make a difference. “People are demanding social purpose and brands are recognizing it as an area where they can differentiate themselves and, in many parts of the world, not only meet governmental compliance requirements, but also build brand equity,” Markson says. While the study reveals that having a social purpose is becoming increasingly important to a brand’s success, that purpose must be authentic and true to the core values of the brand itself. In addition, brands must look beyond traditional corporate social responsibility programs in which they simply donate money to a cause. Twothirds (66%) of respondents believe that it is not enough for companies to merely give money away; they must integrate contributions to good causes into their day-to-day business. More study findings: ➤ 71% of respondents think brands and companies spend too much on advertising and marketing and should put more money into good causes; ➤ 59% would help a brand promote its products if there was a good cause behind it; ➤ 44% are aware of brands that actively support good causes through their products and services; ➤ 68% feel that it’s becoming more unacceptable to not show concern for the environment and live a healthy lifestyle;
BedTimes | January 2010 |
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➤ 64% expect brands to support a good cause; ➤ 61% have bought a brand that supports a good cause even if it wasn’t the cheapest choice; ➤ 59% have a better opinion of companies that integrate good causes into their business, no matter why they do so ; ➤ 56% believe societal and corporate interests should have equal weight in business decisions. The survey, conducted in July and August 2009, queried consumers age 18-64 in 10 countries. The research firm StrategyOne conducted an online survey in Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States and face-to-face interviews in China and India. BT
Brazilians expect most from socially conscious companies Some interesting national and regional differences emerged in this year’s findings from the annual Edelman “goodpurpose” Consumer Study. Respondents in Brazil proved to have the highest expectations for companies, with 89% expecting brands to do something to support a good cause and 61% saying they were more involved in good causes themselves in 2009. Consumers in China and India also have strong opinions about doing good and are significantly more likely to say they are aware of brands that support good causes. More than 70% of respondents in each of those countries said they would switch brands if a different brand of similar quality supported a good cause. Unlike its Asian counterparts, Japan fell short of many of the global results, with the exception of choosing social purpose over social status. Respondents in Japan overwhelmingly preferred hybrid cars (89%), eco-friendly houses (87%) and brands that support the livelihood of local producers (76%). While Europeans are least likely to think that companies actually do support good causes nowadays, they said supporting good causes in their own lives is important. More than three-quarters of respondents in France, Germany, Italy and the United Kingdom were willing to change their own consumption habits if it would help make the world a better place to live. Though the economic downturn has made Americans most likely to cut back on giving money to good causes themselves, they are willing to change consumption habits to make the world a better place to live (85%) and are looking to companies to make it easier for them to make a difference (65%).
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LeadershipLessons To create loyal customers, start with staff Making employees happy creates ripple effects By Larry Wilson
very company leader who has been reading the latest research on the best way to predict longterm organizational success should now know the answer: It’s finding and keeping loyal customers. What makes this so important is the finding that loyal customers contribute twice as much to bottomline profit than customers who are simply satisfied. And that begs the questions, “What do loyal customers look like?” and “How do you find and keep them?” Let’s start with a profile of a loyal customer. First, she buys more of what she buys than other consumers and is the first to buy whatever your company sells that is new or different. These behaviors alone boost profits. Second, she goes out of her way to passionately recommend you to others. This wordof-mouth marketing creates additional profit from the new customers she influences to come to you. Third, she’ll generally be loyal in the face of a problem, which will inevitably happen, and give you valuable feedback about the reasons for her dissatisfaction. Finally, she’s immune to the pull of competition. An article in the Harvard Business Review written by the Gallup polling organization says that the way—the only way—a person becomes a loyal customer is through an emotional connection with the company. The word “emotion” can cause a minor panic in the minds of leaders. You might be thinking, “I’ve never heard much about emotional connections, except maybe that conversation with a boss who told me to leave my emotions at home because business is business.” But recent research challenges that
BedTimes | January 2010
thinking. The new message is: Bring your emotions to work, especially your positive emotions, and share them with others. Think of it this way: There are three broad categories of emotions— positive, negative and neutral. Although the Gallup researchers didn’t say it this way, it’s only a positive emotional connection that creates a loyal customer. And that’s where you come in. As a leader, you can be a primary source of creating positive emotional connections with your staff to show them the way. For example, instead of finding
Instead of finding what people are doing wrong, find what they’re doing right and celebrate that behavior. what people are doing wrong, find what they’re doing right and celebrate that behavior. Does this sound too touchy-feely? It’s not about that. It’s about leaders being key influencers of their culture. In essence, culture means “the way things are around here.” In most business cultures, there’s a lot more fear than fun. And that usually means that people are protecting themselves by having one hand cover their backsides—leaving only one hand to do their job. It’s a leader’s job to make sure employees have both hands free to do their jobs—and to do those jobs joyfully. When people enjoy their work, they are fun to be around. And when customers interact with company representatives who joyfully intend to serve them, it’s easy to make positive emotional connections. Think about what it would mean if your staff regularly made positive statements about your company culture such as “I love my custom-
ers,” “I love my co-workers,” “I love my job” and “I love my boss.” Or worse, imagine if they always said the opposite. If you want your employees to create positive emotional connections in order to find and keep loyal customers, treat those employees the way you want them to treat your customers. And have fun making it happen. BT Larry Wilson is a pioneer in change management, leadership development and strategic thinking. He has founded the Wilson Learning Corp., Pecos River Learning and The Wilson Collaborative. Wilson works with companies to help them “create the organization that, if it existed, would put them out of business.” His clients include major mattress manufacturers and retailers. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
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CompanyProfile Latex Int’l expands beyond U.S. manufacturing
Company emphasizing product innovation, international growth By Dorothy Whitcomb
atex International is a company transformed. Operating for most of its 34-year history as a supplier providing latex foam to the bedding industry, the company has spent the past four years reshaping its operations and broadening its focus. Positioned now as a sales and marketing company that offers innovative, branded product to both mattress manufacturers and retailers, the Shelton, Conn.-based company is experiencing significant growth and is poised for more, its executives say. Founded in 1975 by William Coffey and Steve Kordiak, it originally was called Latex Foam Products. Today, the privately held company’s majority stockholder is Pouchine Cook Capital Management LLC, a New York-based private equity firm. Members of the founding families and company executives also hold equity positions. Much of Latex International’s transformation has been fueled by Kevin Coleman, the company’s president and chief executive officer. Coleman joined Latex International in 2005 as chief operating officer and was immediately tasked with leading a companywide lean transformation, an initiative he also spearheaded at his previous employer, Evans Industries. The results have been dramatic, Coleman says. “Two years ago, we had 300 people generating half as much revenue,” he says. “Today, we have 220 employees and, with the same assets, have doubled our output and quadrupled the complexity of our operations.” Coleman has deployed lean principles throughout the organization, creating a horizontal management structure and a culture of continuous improvement. Executives typically have responsibility for multiple, www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
Above: At the helm Kevin Coleman, Latex International president and chief executive officer, joined the company in 2005. Right: Research and development The company has built a state-of-the-art department for creating new products.
traditionally nonaligned areas. The company is so committed to management across diverse areas of operation that Coleman says, “If you can’t do five different jobs, you probably shouldn’t be working here.” Kevin Stein, vice president of marketing and research and development, is a fan of the approach. “In my case, marketing trends help feed scientific efforts to create better sleep products,” he says. “Having diverse responsibilities helps communication across the board. Companies fail when one part doesn’t know what the others are doing.” Four years of focusing on lean principles and hundreds of Kaizen events later, Latex International has a fast-paced, efficient and results-oriented culture. “We hire people who are flexible, do what it takes to get their jobs done and who thrive on change,” Stein says.
It’s also important, he adds, that people who work for the company have a sense of humor and know how to have fun. Multidimensional structure Today, Latex International’s mattress components division provides latex foam to more than 100 U.S. mattress makers, including seven of the industry’s top 10 companies, Stein says. Latex International is the only Talalay latex producer in North America. Manufactured in a multistep process and to exacting standards, Talalay provides excellent pressure relief, comfort and durability, according to the company. Latex International uses the material in many of its branded products, including EverCloud, a quiltable latex, and Celsion, a patent-pending, temperature-regulating material that can be used on top of innerspring, visco-elastic, polyurethane and latex cores.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
plant within the next 12 to 18 months to service expanded sales. Latex International’s other facilities include a 208,000-square-foot latex pouring plant in Shelton, where it produces more than 1.4 million pillows and 400,000 mattress cores annually. Cores are cut and completed at fabrication sites in Shelton, Atlanta and La Miranda, Calif. A fabrication facility in the United Kingdom supports the company’s European business. Above: New channels Latex International has a permanent showroom at the Las Vegas Market to better reach retailers. Right: Pillow power The company’s pillow division has five lines. The sleep accessories can be found in more than 4,000 sleep shops and furniture stores in the United States.
The company’s pillow division, which sells directly to retailers, offers five different lines, including its RejuveNite brand. “Our branded pillows are in over 4,000 sleep shops and furniture stores in the United States alone,” Stein says. Latex International uses distribution partnerships to expand the number of channels into which it can sell. “We have had a long-standing pillow sales and distribution agreement with Louisville Bedding to sell into the big box, department store and warehouse channels. This year, we established a relationship with Hickory Springs to distribute latex mattress components,” Stein says. “There are small mattress manufacturers throughout the U.S. with plants in remote locations. Now these smaller customers can get the best latex available, but in smaller quantities and at reduced freight costs.” Partnerships like these fit well into the company’s model of value-added, lean operations, Coleman says. “We are continually looking at partnerships, domestic and international acquisitions, mergers and joint ventures,” he explains. Latex International’s acquisition of the assets of British supplier Dunlop Latex Foam Ltd. in 2008 provided a platform for significant growth in its
14 | BedTimes | January 2010
international division. In 2007, the division, which sells both mattress components and branded pillows, contributed less than 3% to Latex International’s total annual sales. “In 2009, we will finish the year with over 25% of total sales coming from international and by 2011, global sales will be more than 45% of total sales,” Stein says. Global growth Indeed, the company is counting on
the continued growth of international sales. “We have a corporate responsibility to increase shareholder value and with double-digit declines in the domestic mattress business we weren’t going to wait around for that business to come back,” Coleman says. The company sells into about 30 countries outside the United States and expects to add 10 more early this year. In addition to Australia and countries in Europe and South America, Latex International sells into Southeast Asia, an area it intends to develop aggressively during the next several years. To date, a fabrication facility in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, has supported its business in the region but Coleman says he expects to open a Malaysian manufacturing
What’s ahead Latex International’s R&D efforts are concentrated at its headquarters in Shelton. Executives say they are committed to bringing new products to market and last year doubled the size of the department and provided it with its own latex production system—complete with compounding and molding areas—at a cost of close to $1 million. Much of the current R&D effort is focused on bringing new products to market “at higher velocity price points,” Stein says. “We’re looking at latex in general and latex enhanced with natural additives that give it new characteristics,” he says. “Over the next year or two, look for less expensive products, including a bed at $1,000.” The company also hopes to reduce the price of its products by gaining control of raw material costs. “Kevin Coleman has spent a huge amount of time looking at the latex supply chain and how we can manage costs through the vertical integration of materials,” Stein says. “We’re very close to agreements that will allow us to do this.” Company officials see a strong future for latex foam and intend to be in a position to capitalize on growth of the category, which they expect will exceed $250 million in sales by 2012. “We started with operational muscle. If you can’t make it perfect and have it there on time, every time, then you’re a nonstarter,” Coleman says. “After that, it’s all about what else you can bring to the table.” BT www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
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economy in 2010
A rebound is coming. How big will the bounce be?
16 | BedTimes | January 2010
By Phillip M. Perry Fair with gradually clearing skies. That’s the forecast for the 2010 economy from one observer. And after the stormiest year in recent memory, who can deny that a spell of even partial sunshine sounds pretty good? Maybe 2009 was tough, but as a business survivor you can congratulate yourself on your hardiness and take steps to make the most of the rebound. “The weak have given up and the biggest have been humbled,” says Bob Phibbs, a consultant based in Coxsackie, N.Y. “It’s a new game for everyone.” Economy exits recession The best news is that some key economic data now signal a broad move to positive territory. “The recession has ended and we are looking at a modest recovery in 2010,” says Sophia Koropeckyj, managing director of industry economics at Moody’s Economy.com, a research firm based in West Chester, Pa. The health of the U.S. economy depends largely on trends in the gross domestic product, the yearly total of all goods and services produced in the country. The University of Michigan’s economic forecast, which the International Sleep Products Association uses in creating its own industry forecasts, expects GDP to grow 1.7% in the first half of 2010 and 2.5% in the second half. Moody’s Economy.com forecasts GDP to rise a modest 2% in 2010. That figure represents a rebound from the 2.5% decline expected when figures for 2009 are finally tallied. To put these numbers in context, the annual GDP increase for an economy in average growth mode is 2.5%. While the GDP numbers in 2009 were pretty miserable, Koropeckyj notes that the economy actually enjoyed 3% growth in the last six months of the year. “The rebound has been entirely due to the federal stimulus money,” she says, citing a number of ways the federal government pumped money into the economy: aid to state and local governments, first-time homeowner tax credits, Cash for Clunkers, a decrease in payroll tax deductions and the extension of unemployment benefits. “All these programs have kept a floor under the economy and spurred some consumer spending.” Indeed, these federal programs have been so important that Koropeckyj says there is a real risk of a return to recessionary trends if the programs are allowed to expire. “That possibility could be forestalled by extensions of a number of these programs—and we believe that will very likely occur,” she says. Federal stimulus money should support a strengthening economy in the first half of 2010. As for the second half, Koropeckyj expects further economic strengthening from a rebound in the private sector.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
Holding back Companies are right to be concerned by low consumer confidence levels. “Most measures of consumer confidence are still very low,” says Scott Hoyt, senior director of consumer economics at Moody’s Economy.com. It’s no secret why: Stubbornly high unemployment rates and a moribund housing market are key disincentives to spending sprees. Unemployment, at 10% in November, is projected to increase. “We expect unemployment to peak at 10.3% by the middle of 2010 and will end next year no lower than about 10%,” Koropeckyj says. “Peakto-trough employment will decline by about 8.5 million, by mid- to late 2010. We do not expect a recovery in employment until 2013. Because of this, the industries most dependent on consumer spending will be the ones that recover the latest.” Although layoffs are moderating significantly, it will take a while for consumers to start spending more freely again. “At least through the first half of the year, consumers will be asking ‘Where will the money come from to spend?’ ” Hoyt says. “People are still paying down their debt and there are no capital gains to realize. Interest rates are low and dividends are not increasing.” While that’s enough to put a significant drag on spending, there is better news regarding housing. “Housing prices are expected to keep falling for another few quarters but the market, in terms of construction and sales, is close to bottoming out,” Koropeckyj says. “Sales have inched up in large measure
‘We expect big banks will start to improve their lending practices in late 2010 and small banks about a year later.’
18 | BedTimes | January 2010
because of improved affordability and the sales of foreclosed homes at deep discounts.” Businesses remain cautious Burned by the rapid expansion and subsequent crash of the past few years, business owners remain cautious about the future and careful about taking risks. “I think everyone feels they are battling back but the war is still on,” says Walter Simson, principal of Ventor LLC, a New York-based management consultancy. For businesses large and small, credit remains a significant problem. “People are breathing sighs of relief that banking seems to be stabilized, but not enough credit is yet being given to small- and mediumsize enterprises,” Simson says. Those businesses were often dependent on smaller finance firms that have closed or merged with other companies, disrupting established credit channels. And there is a new focus on quality in loan portfolios. “Some things that banks used to let slide are now large areas of concern,” Simson says. “A lot of this stems from regulatory pressures.” Even credit card financing is problematic. “Many small businesses fund
their operations on their credit cards and that can pose problems as fees are increasing,” says Marilyn J. Holt, a Seattle-based management consultant. “Even a small increase can have serious impact on your bottom line. So you either have to raise your prices or accept smaller profit margins.” In many cases, credit card companies are lowering credit limits and beefing up bills with fees and service charges. “If you use credit cards in your business, watch your bills for new fees and look for changes in payment due dates,” Holt says. “Card companies can slip them (fees) back in and that can spark big increases in interest rates.” Expansion trimmed When credit is available, the cost of money still can be an issue. “While there’s more money available than a year ago, the problem is that the terms are not very attractive,” says Michael Smeltzer, director of the Manufacturers Association of South Central Pennsylvania, a trade group whose members employ some 220,000 workers. And that’s driving decisions to borrow for capital investment. “Profit margins in manufacturing continue to get squeezed, and if the terms of credit would squeeze profit further, our members are not inclined to make investments,” he says. Business owners have indeed held back on expansion. Capital investment dropped by 19% in 2009 and is expected to inch up only 0.5% this year. “We expect big banks will start to improve their lending practices in late 2010 and small banks about a year later,” Koropeckyj says. On the positive side, the drawdown www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
of inventories that categorized manufacturing for much of the year is turning. “We are seeing an improvement in industrial production sparked by an inventory swing,” she says. “Businesses will start to build inventories again.” Building inventories, in turn, should feed the profit machine. While corporate profits declined 10% in 2009, they are expected to enjoy an increase of 2% in 2010, Koropeckyj says. “Corporate balance sheets are likely to improve next year and those with good balance sheets are raising cash in the bond market thanks to low investment-grade corporate bond yields.” Further, exporters are expected to enjoy a currency advantage. “The value of the dollar has gone down quite a bit and we expect it to fall farther, which will be good for exporters,” Koropeckyj says. “The dollar peaked at 112 against a broad-based basket of currencies in the first quarter of 2009, has since fallen to 103 and is expected to be below 100 by the fall of this year.”
‘What we need to do more than anything is break out of the commodity trap. Be a partner to your customers and be more concerned with their success than making a quick dollar in a transaction.’ Looking ahead In the first few months of this year, watch for trends in consumer and business confidence. Both measures will be key factors in determining the pace of the rebound. “Consumers are still quite skittish,” Koropeckyj says. “The real risk to the
Box INSIDE The
rebound is from the labor market. A lot of people have been unemployed a long time and that creates a big weight on the economy. Too, the longer people are out of work, the tougher it is to get reabsorbed into the market. Their skills deteriorate and employers are hesitant to hire people who have been without work for a long time.” “For their part, businesses are no longer cutting back on equipment and software purchases but they are not expanding either,” she adds. “They have already begun to reduce the rate at which they lay off workers but they will not start hiring people until they see the economy has already embarked on a recovery. That should start to be apparent sometime in 2010.” Many business owners are troubled by uncertainty over government policy, Smeltzer says. “Where are we going to be left in terms of cap and trade? Health care reform? State and local tax rates?,” Smeltzer asks. “All those things have become almost monumental. If I don’t
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20 | BedTimes | January 2010
know what my business costs are going to be, I am not inclined to hire workers and make capital investments.” Position for profit How can you position yourself for the rebound? Keep an eagle eye on your product line. Take a fresh look at the mattress market and introduce new programs that excite the customer. “More than ever, the tightening up of consumers and businesses has caused everyone to look at value,” says
Shep Hyken, a St. Louis-based management consultant. “What we need to do more than anything is break out of the commodity trap. Be a partner to your customers and be more concerned with their success than making a quick dollar in a transaction.” And take steps to become more visible. That can mean providing information or benefits consumers don’t actually have to buy. “Keep asking yourself, ‘What can I give away to get noticed?’ ” Hyken says. “That may be a newsletter with
helpful tips or a webinar with voice on your Web site.” In the next two or three months, analysts think they’ll have a more solid feel for how 2010 will shape up. “I think we’ll know by no later than March the trajectory of the recovery,” says Chicago-based consultant James Dion. His forecast? “I think people will be surprised by how fast the recovery comes in 2010.” Why? “Two words: ‘Pent-up demand.’ ” BT
Industry forecast: Value of shipments to grow 7%
he mattress industry likely reached a low in summer 2009 and can look forward to modest market improvements in 2010, according to the International Sleep Products Association’s economic forecast. “This has been the worst industry recession in memory, but it appears that we are at the bottom looking up,” the report says. Produced in September, the report anticipated that the dollar value of mattress shipments in 2009 would be $5.4 billion, 13.5% lower than 2008. For 2010, ISPA expects the industry to experience a recovery, with the value of mattress shipments forecast to grow 7%. The dollar value of shipments, bolstered by higher unit prices,
peaked in 2007 at $6.9 billion. From 2007-2009, the value of shipments will have contracted by 21.3%, according to the report. ISPA forecasts unit shipments to fall 10.5% in 2009, after declining 11% in 2008. That represents the fourth annual decline in shipments, which peaked in 2005 at 43.7 million units. Unit shipments are projected to rise 3.5% to total 33.2 million in 2010 and are forecast to reach 35.2 million in 2011. Each economic forecast from ISPA includes “Another Perspective,” written by Jerry Epperson, a partner in the Richmond, Va.-based investment banking and advisory firm Mann, Armistead & Epperson Ltd. Epperson
Creating the forecast
Since the mid-1980s, the International Sleep Products Association has published economic forecasts for the mattress industry. The forecast is produced using an econometric model, which statistically links the mattress industry with the larger home furnishings market and the U.S. economy. The industry forecast reflects the consensus of the ISPA Forecast Panel, which is made up of leading mattress producers and component suppliers. ISPA’s econometric model is used to generate a baseline industry forecast based on the outlook for the national economy prepared by the University of Michigan. This initial forecast is then reviewed and analyzed by the Forecast Panel. The resulting “consensus” forecast couples the econometric model’s statistical relationships with insight and up-to-the-minute market movements observed by seasoned industry participants. The members of the Forecast Panel adjust the econometric model to produce a forecast consistent with the average of the predictions. The most recent ISPA forecast for the total domestic mattress industry was created in September 2009 and extends through December 2011. ISPA will update the forecast in April, as it does each year.
22 | BedTimes | January 2010
says that creating any forecast based on the past year is difficult. “Looking beyond this terrible year becomes almost an alphabetic challenge,” he says. “Will the recovery be Vshaped, U-shaped or the double-dip W shape? One Wall Street wizard recently predicted a reverse square root-shaped recovery!” He continues: “Given the ample bad news in the last year plus the controversy that continues about our economic future, it is difficult to forecast a recovery with any real vigor but it should happen and…we foresee some surprises on the upside.” While Epperson calls the anticipated 7% growth in the dollar value of mattress sales in 2010 “heavenly,” he points out that such a growth rate is fairly anemic when compared to recoveries after past recessions. “Those recessions were also shorter and shallower, so there is the potential for a double-digit gain in 2010, in our opinion,” he says. For the industry to rebound, the housing market has to stabilize, consumer credit needs to flow freely and consumers have to feel more confident about the economy. If that happens, Epperson says, the mattress industry is poised to benefit because it has “cut overhead, reduced indebtedness and downsized to its most efficient facilities with the best work force to a degree beyond anyone’s memory. He concludes: “It may be years before we return to record shipment levels, but profits can return very rapidly.” BT www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
As a leading innovator of long lasting comfort technology, we don’t allow ourselves to get too comfortable. As Foamex, we were always creating the science, providing the solutions, and inventing the processes that have set the standard for the best in today’s comfort technology. But that just wasn’t good enough for us. The result is FXI, a more nimble, more inventive, and more environmentally friendly company. We’ve taken the best of our past, and firmly positioned for the future with renewed commitment, focus, and energy. FXI. There’s no one else like us. Visit FXI.com to learn why.
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Contractual obligations 2 | BedTimes 26 | BedTimes| January | January2010 2010
5 simple clauses can protect your legal interests
By Mike Christiansen
I have to sue where? ou think you’re right. You know you’re If your contract has an “appropriate venright. The facts are clear. You’ve honored all ue” clause that places the venue where the provisions of your business contract. you are located, then you may be in good shape. You’ve provided your product in a timely fashion, But if the contract is silent on the subject, anin good order and in accordance with all specifiswer this: If you are in Wisconsin and your vencations. You’ve congratulated yourself for adherdor is in Arkansas and payment is to be made ing to every term of the deal. It’s a no-brainer. to your account in Texas You’re right. The other You enter into a written then in what court will side is wrong. Why can’t the lawsuit be filed? they see that? contract for a reason and that If your contract Chances are your contract should spell out in doesn’t stipulate the counterpart on the other side is saying the sufficient detail exactly what the venue where you are, you may find yourself same thing. She thinks deal is. All that’s necessary to traveling to Little Rock she and her company prevent the ‘he said, she said’ is to litigate the matter in have lived up to evstate or federal court. ery contract term and a ‘no oral modification’ clause. Consider the economobligation. Odd how ics of that: Travel, time, this happens, but it is aggravation, trying to find a lawyer in Arkansas, a risk of doing business. And sooner or later, it the possible bias of Arkansas courts toward will happen: You are going to have a conflict with state residents. It’s a nightmare. All of that can a supplier, vendor, retailer, employee, partner, be avoided if your contract specifies the venue shareholder, someone. where you are. Disputes arise, differences of opinion occur and action needs to be taken. And there you are— It’s going to cost me how much? knowing you’re right, knowing you’re going to Few lawyers will take business cases with win, knowing that the facts and evidence are on a contingency-fee arrangement. Most your side. But is your own contract on your side? lawyers take cases only on an hourly basis. There are five common legal traps in which you There is little essential difference between a can find yourself.
BedTimes | January 2010 |3 BedTimes | January 2010 | 27
$50,000 case and a $500,000 case. The pleadings are largely the same, discovery is pretty much identical, witness testimony will be similar and the preparation may well be equal. What exactly is the point of spending $50,000 to recover $50,000? But if your contract provides for attorneys’ fees then you immediately have the upper hand in any contract dispute or lawsuit. If the other side knows she may end up paying your attorney’s fees if she loses— and especially if her side’s claim is far-fetched—then she knows her side will be juggling chain saws. This has what we call in the law an in terrorem effect—the fear of having to pay a judgment and both sides’ attorneys’ fees may be just enough to make the other side come to its senses.
She said we agreed to what? How many times have you received a phone call, letter or email purporting to change the terms of a deal? How many times has your contract dispute degenerated into a “he said, she said” battle of who said what to whom and when? You enter into a written contract for a reason and that contract should spell out in sufficient detail exactly what the deal is. All that’s necessary to prevent the “he said, she said” is a “no oral modification” clause. This type of clause in your contract can say that no modification of the contract is binding unless it is in writing and signed by both parties. This clause often is the single most important provision in a contract that is being litigated and it is so simple to include. Does such a clause always work? Is it always enforceable? Nothing is certain in the law. But again, the presence of a specific modification clause gives you a competitive advantage against bogus communications, phone calls and real or imaginary side deals to which you were never a party.
The law of where? Here’s a situation that’s not uncommon. The vendor is from Rhode Island, the supplier is from California, the branch store is in Colorado and the product was shipped from your factory in Texas. A problem arises: Which state law applies? Does Rhode Island law apply? Texas? California? This can be a real conundrum. Even if you have a good clause setting the venue in your home jurisdiction, if the choice of law isn’t clear, you can end up in a situation where your local judge has to figure out how to apply the law of another state. It sounds crazy, but it happens. And again, it can be avoided with a simple clause in your contract that defines which state’s law applies. As long as that law has some connection to the transaction,
28 | BedTimes | January 2010
it’s generally enforceable. So if you are a California company, your contract should say the venue is in the area of California in which your company is located and that California law applies. Problem avoided.
It will take how long? Lawsuits can take forever to resolve. By the time you have briefed your lawyer (and in many cases add the time taken to select counsel in the first place) and your lawyer has filed the lawsuit, gotten it served and begun discovery, months have gone by. Litigation travels at its own pace without regard for your business operations, your level of anxiety or your company’s bottom line. The time, trouble and aggravation of litigation can be a ball and chain around your company’s productivity. No wonder so many business people hate litigation. Yet, most business contracts continue to have a clause that says any dispute arising under the contract shall be litigated. Why not mediate it? Ask yourself, would you like to attempt to resolve the dispute within 30 days or prefer to litigate it for the next year or longer? Do you want to spend a few bucks for a mediator’s time and attorney’s fees with the chance of resolving the matter quickly or you would prefer opening your checkbook for protracted litigation for a year or more? Would you rather resolve the matter in your conference room or mediator’s office than in front of an indifferent jury and busy judge in an open courtroom? Would you prefer to work out your own resolution to a problem rather than be dictated to by a judge or jury? Would you prefer to keep your business matters private or lay them bare in an open courtroom? The answers are obvious: Mediation is faster, cheaper, more informal, empowering and confidential. All are compelling reasons why your business contract should require mediation with a certified mediator. Don’t let your lawyer talk you out of this clause. Lawyers stand to make a lot more money litigating than mediating. Being aware of these legal traps and making certain you avoid them in your contracts can save you time, trouble, frustration and money. It will put you in a better position to win your case or, even better, avoid litigation altogether. After all, isn’t that what you would prefer? BT Mike Christiansen is a Florida Supreme Court-certified civil mediator and practicing lawyer specializing in business, real estate and telecommunication matters. He is a partner in the firm Mastriana & Christiansen P.A. Contact him at email@example.com or 954-561-1711. www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
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Stay on Track... And maintain your competitive edge! l
Meet industry suppliers from around the world See new machinery, products, services, and innovations Make connections, build relationships and network Stay on top of industry trends
March 3-6, 2010 ISPA EXPO is the only trade show in the world devoted exclusively to the mattress industry!
Charlotte Convention Center Charlotte, North Carolina USA Support the Association that Supports Your Business!
BedTimes | January 2010 |
Shift into High Gear… get ready for ISPA EXPO 2010!
ke plans to attend Register now and ma ! er rn co e th nd ou ar st ely to the mattress ISPA EXPO 2010 is ju kind devoted exclusiv its of ow sh de tra ly on , in a recent this key event — the s at the EXPO, which er rtn pa s es sin bu d lleagues an this great industry. Join your co by the Association to d ide ov pr m ra og pr as the #1 survey, was identified industry. at you stay underway. Ensure th is ry ve co re ic om on ec at the ly once every two Most experts agree th omy bounces back. On on ec e th as ed ar ep ll pr oducts ‘on track’ and are we e widest selection of pr th e se to ty ni rtu po exceptional op tain your years do you have the bottom line, and main ur yo e ov pr im , ity tiv your produc you to shop available to increase t and cost effective for ien en nv co it s ke ma e EXPO s and services — competitive edge. Th ts, materials, supplie en on mp co t, en pm ui ery, eq and compare machin e, in just a few days. in one place, at one tim ections with ships and make conn ion lat re ild bu to ce pla world. ISPA EXPO And there’s no better ues from around the ag lle co d an s, er rtn pa ational customers, business industry-specific educ e, tiv ma for In ! up tch meets to ca most recent is where the industry the latest trends and of d ise pr ap u yo ep ed to ke sessions are also plann developments. — then visit pages for event details g in low fol e th w vie to re Please take a minute O and register today!
g you in Charlotte!
I look forward to seein Regards,
of Thomasville, Inc. Don Wright, Wright Trustees Chair, ISPA Board of somniaczzz in their n’t want to miss the In
P.S. You wo
32 | BedTimes | January 2010
encore EXPO perform
ISPA EXPO 2010
Schedule at a Glance
tuesday, March 2 7:30am – 5:00pm 8:30am – 1:30pm 3:00pm – 5:00pm
registration Open International Factory tour (non-U.S. Manufacturers only) (time subject to change) PrE-CONFErENCE SEMINAr: Mattress Safety — what You Need to Know
wednesday, March 3 7:00am 9:00am 2:00pm 5:00pm
– – – –
5:00pm 5:00pm 3:00pm 6:30pm
registration Open ISPA EXPO Exhibit Hall Open rOUNdtAblE: Industry Forecast — what will the Future look like? wElCOME rECEPtION: the Carolinas...From the Mountains to the Coast, featuring the Insomniaczzz
thursday, March 4 7:00am 7:45am 9:00am 2:00pm 5:00pm
– – – – –
5:00pm 9:00am 5:00pm 3:00pm 7:00pm
registration Open SEMINAr: teaming with retailers to Improve the Customer Experience ISPA EXPO Exhibit Hall Open rOUNdtAblE: Mattress recycling & disposal — Opportunities and Challenges Private Exhibitor Appointments
Friday, March 5 7:00am – 5:00pm 7:45am – 10:00am
registration Open Industry breakfast featuring Craig Karges, Illusionist
10:00 – 5:00 2:00pm – 3:00pm 5:00pm – 7:00pm
rOUNdtAblE: ‘green’ — what does It really Mean?
(included with your EXPO attendee registration)
ISPA EXPO Exhibit Hall Open Private Exhibitor Appointments
Saturday, March 6 8:30am – 10:00am 9:00am – 12:00pm
registration Open ISPA EXPO Exhibit Hall Open
Visit the ISPA EXPO website to register and for the latest event details. www.sleepproducts.org/ISPAEXPO
*Schedule subject to change. Additional fee for roundtables and Educational Seminars. See registration form for details. roundtables are free for ISPA members.
ISPA EXPO 2010
BedTimes | January 2010 |
See the latest innovations in machinery, equipment, components, materials, supplies and services for the mattress industry… all in one place at one time! toP Reasons You Should Attend l
Make efficient use of your tiMe. See suppliers from
around the world with a full range of products and services specifically for the mattress industry…all under one roof.
inspect, observe and coMpare first hand as vendors deMonstrate their products. Focus your search
and ask questions as you take advantage of this unique opportunity to view a variety of machinery, components, materials, and services. l
new exhibitors and new products on display! Every
ISPA EXPO includes brand new suppliers who you haven’t seen. EXPO is a popular venue for new product launches– see the latest offerings that can save you time, money and increase your profits.
Get ideas for cost-effective enhanceMents for your products, improved manufacturing efficiencies, and new innovations.
build relationships and reconnect with business partners, colleaGues and friends from around the world. support your industry association.
34 | BedTimes | January 2010
products & services you’ll see
At ISPA exPo
l l l l l l l l
adhesives adjustable bed Mechanisms accessories computer software consulting fabrics fibers fixtures foam fr Materials and services
l l l l l l l l l l l
hard Goods innerspring units licensee opportunities Machinery parts, supplies & tools services soft Goods testing labs and services thread ticking and much more!
be sure to patronize those suppliers who support your industry through their exhibit at ispa expo. www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
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See Industry Suppliers From Around the World!
A. Lava & Son Co. Advance Fiber Tech. Corp. (AFT) American & Efird, Inc. American Nonwovens Inc. Arch Chemicals, Inc. Ateja Tritunggal Atlanta Attachment Co., Inc. Avery Dennison Corporation â€” Fastener Division BarretteWood Baumer of America, Inc. Bechik Products, Inc. Bekaert Textiles USA Inc. Black Bros. Company BLR Bo-Buck Mills, Inc. BoMei-Changfu Ltd. BRK Group LLC Bruin Plastics Co., Inc. C.J. Hodder Lumber Company Carpenter Company Chamay Mattress Ticking Manufacture (Foshan) Co., LTD. Chem-Tick Coated Fabrics, Inc. Coats North America Costa International Creative Ticking CREDO O.O.O. CT Nassau Tape - Ticking CTL-Chicago Tape & Label Demand Foam Cutting Deslee Textiles USA Inc. Diamond Needle Corp. Diamond Spring Company - USA Dunlap Sunbrand International Duroflex Ltd. Eclipse International/Eastman House Edge-Sweets Company Edgewater Machine Co., Inc.
Enkev Group Enriquez Materials & Quilting Inc. Entex Textil, S. L. Ergomotion Estes Forwarding Worldwide Everbright Manufactory Ltd. Fecken-Kirfel America Inc. Feutre National Felt Inc. First Film Extruding, LLC/Balcan Plastics Ltd. Flex-A-Bed Flexible Foam Products, Inc. FMA Trading LLC Foshan Ruixin Nonwoven Co., Ltd. FXI Foamex Innovations Global Systems Group The Govmark Organization, Inc. Harvard Manufacturing Enterprises, Inc. Henkel Corporation Herculite Products, Inc. Hickory Springs Mfg. Co., Inc. Ideal Quilting Limited Innofa Integrity Software Solutions Jacquard Textile James Cash Machine Co., Inc. Jomel Industries, Inc. Jones Fiber Products, Inc. Knickerbocker Bed Co., Inc. Komar Alliance Lady Americana Lampe USA Inc. Latex International Latex Systems Latexco Lava USA Leggett & Platt, Inc. Leigh Fibers Inc. Lenzing Liberty Threads N.A. Inc.
Lucerne Textiles Luen Tai Group (HK) Limited Masias Maquinaria, S.A. Maxime Knitting Inc. Milliken & Company Monks International N.V. Nantong Healthcare Foam Series Co., Ltd Natura World Inc. OHM Systems Performance Fabrics & Fibers Plastic Monofil Co. Ltd. Precision Custom Coatings Precision Fabrics Group, Inc. Priotex Radium Foam Vita Talalay Response Computer Group, Inc. Restonic Mattress Corp. Richard Pieris Natural Foams Ltd. SABA North America, L.L.C. Shanghai Latex Industrial Co. Ltd. Simalfa Simmons Engineering Corp. Soltex, Inc. Spec-Tex Inc. Springs Creative Products Group LLC Spuhl AG Stork Twin City Testing Sunkist Chemical Machinery Ltd Tai Wa Hong (Macau) Tekscan Inc. Tietex International, Ltd. Transfer Master Products Inc. AKA Maxwell Adjustable Beds Uni-Source Textile Utopia Mattress, Inc. (Division of BedInABox) Vita Nonwovens William T. Burnett & Co., Inc. Wright of Thomasville, Inc. Zhejiang Huajian Mattress Machinery Limited
* As of December 4, 2009
www.sleepproducts.org/ISPAEXPO 36 | BedTimes | January 2010
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ISPA EXPO IS A MuST-ATTEnd EvEnT for anyone in the mattress industry who wants to make important business connections! You need to be at the ISPA EXPO if you are a: CEO n Owner n President n Vice President n Plant/Production and general Manager n Sales/Marketing Manager n r&d/Engineer n in Purchasing n or are involved in the selection and/or purchase of mattress manufacturing supplies and services. n
thereâ€™s lots of ground to cover at the ISPA EXPO, so come with your colleagues so you can take the time you need with exhibitors, gather information, then share and compare.
More than 95% of EXPO attendees said they found what they were looking for on the show floor!
Source: EXPO 2008 Survey
A SPEcIAl MESSAGE fOR InTERnATIOnAl vISITORS ISPA welcomes visitors from around the world to the EXPO. Visit our web site for important information and helpful hints to make your travel to the EXPO as trouble-free as possible. Youâ€™ll find links to U.S. State department travel sites, information about obtaining a letter of invitation from ISPA, and a list of travel agents from around the world who can assist you with travel plans. For more information, visit: www.sleepproducts.org/ISPAEXPO/registration Also be sure to register for the fAcTORY TOuR open to non-u.S. manufacturers only.
See the web site for details. 38 | BedTimes | January 2010
Matching and Coordinating MATTRESS TAPE,
TICKING & BORDERS from CT NASSAU
For the first time ever, you can get mattress tape, panel fabrics, and borders — all designed and color-coordinated from one source — CT Nassau. No other supplier brings together inspired woven and knitted ticking fabrics and borders with the largest variety of mattress tape in one seamlessly color-matched unit. You never have to worry about selecting coordinated tapes and fabrics because we’ve done it for you. Our mattress fabrics, borders, and tapes match like they’re made for one another — because they are! Contact us at 1-800-397-0090 or www.ctnassau.com to find out how we can make your mattresses look their best.
6557 Flotilla St, Commerce CA 90040 616 S. 55th Ave. Ste 103, Phoenix, AZ 85043 www.enriquezquilting.com Ph. 888.464.4275 Distributor for Texas, Arizona, New Mexcio, and California.
4101 S. NC 62, PO Box 39, Alamance, NC 27201 www.ctnassau.com Ph. 1-800-397-0090
Photographs are not representative of final products’ colors.
Make connections with customers, business partners, and colleagues from around the world at ISPA EXPO! Special Events!
ISPA Welcome center
Welcome Reception: “The carolinas…from the Mountains to the coast” Wednesday, March 3rd, 5:00pm – 6:30pm Help kick off the EXPO during this exciting, interactive event that is always the talk of the show! Enjoy food, drinks, and fun. Test your skills against your friends and colleagues in Nascar™ remote control racing, basketball hoops, Wii™ games and more. Back by popular demand, the Insomniaczzz industry band will keep you rockin! After the reception, enjoy your evening at one of the many fine restaurants in and around the Charlotte City Center. your badge is your entrance ticket to the reception which includes a free drink ticket.
ISPA Industry Breakfast Friday, March 5th, 7:45am – 10:00am
located in the EXPO hall, the welcome Center will be staffed full time during show hours to help you make your time at ISPA EXPO 2010 as productive and rewarding as possible. Stop by the Center to: l l
Featuring Craig Karges, Illusionist Join us for this special event which is included with your ISPA EXPO attendee registration.* Let Craig Karges dazzle your mind while you enjoy a filling buffet breakfast with colleagues and friends. His performance is a wonderful blend of mystery, humor, psychology and intuition. Known as the “extraordinist,” Karges has appeared on the Tonight Show, Larry King Live, Lifetime Television, CNBC, CNNHeadline News, the Fox News Channel, E! Entertainment Television and more. In addition to this entertaining presentation, ISPA takes this opportunity through its awards program to recognize its leaders and acknowledge those who have given outstanding service to the industry. The Industry Breakfast provides a relaxed and casual opportunity for you join industry colleagues to network and to connect...don’t miss it!
meet fellow EXPO attendees pick up a complimentary copy of the latest bedtimes or Sleep Savvy magazines or an extra copy of the ISPA EXPO Program/Exhibitor directory browse the ‘net or check email at our “cyberstations” get directions around the convention center and exhibition floor speak with ISPA staff find out about ISPA membership benefits – and how to join learn about ISPA products and services hear more about better Sleep Council programs and research
*see registration form for details.
ispa. ispa official photographers during the event may be used in future promotional efforts.
no photography or videotaping permitted on the show floor without prior written permission from photos taken by
40 | BedTimes | January 2010
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Learn and Benefit from exceptional Industry-Specific educational Sessions Pre-Conference Seminar
tuesday, March 2
Mattress Safety — What You Need to Know
3:00pm – 5:00pm
Speaker: Representative from U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (invited) Make sure you are up to speed on the current status of CPSC’s efforts to enforce the Part 1632 and 1633 mattress flammability standards. Also learn how the CPSC is implementing new safety requirements enacted in the Consumer Products Safety Improvements Act (CPSIA) and what impact they might have on your business in terms of the components you use, and how you test and certify your product. Separate ticketS required for educational SeSSionS – See regiStration form for detailS.
wednesday, March 3 Roundtable: Industry Forecast — What Will the Future Look Like? 2:00pm – 3:00pm Speakers: Jerry Epperson, Managing Director, Mann, Armistead and Epperson, Ltd. Michael Sherman, Ph.D., President, Association Research Inc. Given today’s challenging marketplace, anticipating the future is difficult — but more critical than ever. Be one of the first to hear an overview of the 2010 mattress industry forecast figures. Our experts will review the highlights and tell you what it may mean for your business. Understand how the forecast is prepared and how to use this valuable information to help make more informed decisions.
thursday, March 4 teaming with Retailers to Improve the Customer experience 7:45am – 9:00am
Speaker: Mike Wittenstein, Chief Experience Architect MikeWittenstein.com Paying attention to the front line can improve your bottom line. As manufacturers, you can impact consumer perception of your brand by teaming with your retailers on the customer experience. In this session, Mike Wittenstein, an authority on customer experience with a successful track record at such brands as McDonald’s, Wingate Inns, IBM and Air Canada, as well as with aspiring brands, will show you the practical nuts and bolts of pulling together a customer experience design plan that improves your profitability and the profitability of your retailers.
thursday, March 4 (continued)
Roundtable: Mattress Recycling & Disposal — opportunities and Challenges 2:00pm – 3:00pm Speaker: Representative from Rubicon National Social Innovations
Recycling is becoming an increasingly important issue for the industry as more communities refuse to accept used mattresses in landfills and some states consider whether to make mattress manufacturers responsible for taking back and recycling their used products. Hear about recent ISPA efforts to expand recycling and disposal initiatives, the potential opportunities and pitfalls, and how other industries are meeting similar challenges.
friday, March 5 Roundtable: ‘Green’ — What Does It Really Mean? 2:00pm – 3:00pm Speakers: Industry ‘Green’ Task Force
Consumers’ attitudes toward ‘green’ products have significantly evolved. Many more are demanding assurance that the products they buy are truly ‘green’. Most manufacturers and retailers agree that any standard developed should be straightforward and easy for the consumer to understand. But what does ‘green’ really mean when it comes to mattresses and what should the scope of such a standard be? Hear about the current efforts to tackle these questions and more.
Separate ticketS required for roundtable and educational SeSSionS – See regiStration form for detailS. roundtableS free for iSpa memberS. no video or audiotaping of educational SeSSionS permitted.
42 | BedTimes | January 2010
partners Same price since 2007
2008 – No Increase 2009 – No Increase 2010 – No Increase
Atlantic Thread & Supply is uniquely qualified to keep you productive, efficient, and profitable. Our CRAQ-SPUN® threads offer you maximum performance, less downtime, the most units per shift, and minimum wear on machines. To learn more about CRAQ-SPUN® threads and the Protection for Peaceful Sleep® system, please give us a call at 1-800-287-4624 or email us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org. *Certified to meet requirements of ASTM Test Method D7016 Protection for Peaceful Sleep®, CRAQ-SPUN® and Oxford® are registered trademarks of Atlantic Thread & Supply Company, Inc.
cHARlOTTE, nORTH cAROlInA, uSA Centrally-located, extremely affordable and convenient ISPA EXPO 2010 is easily accessible by car, train or air and convenient to Charlotte Douglas International Airport, which handles nearly 600 flights daily. Charlotte is also within a 200-mile radius of the majority of North Carolina manufacturers who make up the “furniture capital of the world.” Charlotte’s Center City convention district boasts nearly 100 restaurants and eateries as well as scores of shopping and entertainment options. Walk along the bustling streets or step aboard the Historic Charlotte Trolley in the South End and experience the warmth and Southern hospitality visitors to the Queen City have come to know. Captivating and cosmopolitan, Charlotte has character to spare and an ambiance all its own!
Getting there is easy!
44 | BedTimes | January 2010
Innovation resurfaces Since 1905, Eclipse® International has set the bar for technologies that truly improve sleep quality, reduce back and neck pain, and virtually eliminate stiffness.* Clinical studies has proved it, our patents protect it, and the innovative features help our sleep products sell themselves. We are proud to introduce the latest evolution of Spinal Zone® Sleep Technology - a patent-pending development that extends our proven lumbar support into the outer quilting - producing unsurpassed, fulldepth support from the innerspring to the top of the mattress.
Patent-pending Shading for emphasis only.
Join the world’s fastest growing bedding group today! Craftsman Quality | Affordable Value | Patented Features | Limited Distribution * Research results were documented in two separate scientific studies conducted by the Director of the Exercise Physiology and Human Performance Laboratory of West Virginia University.
A World of Sleep Since 1905
For licensing opportunities, contact: Stu Carlitz toll free: 800.634.8434 tel: 215.715.9677 Las Vegas Market Showroom: Building C, Space 1350 UNITED STATES KOREA TAIWAN CHINA AUSTRALIA NEW ZEALAND UNITED KINGDOM IRELAND SOUTH AFRICA MALAYSIA INDONESIA U.A.E. SINGAPORE PHILIPPINES
the westin charlotte
Book Your Stay at one of the Following official ISPA exPo Hotels Take advantage of special low rates negotiated with the following hotels, located within walking distance of the Charlotte Convention Center. 1.
tHe WeStIN CHARLotte (HeADquARteRS HoteL) 601 s. college street, charlotte, nc 28202 $179 single/ $189 double; $209 single/$219 double Grand deluxe rooms
Situated in the uptown financial district, The Westin Charlotte, offers endless opportunities at your doorstep — and is across the street from the Charlotte Convention Center.
courtyard by Marriott charlotte city center
CouRtYARD BY MARRIott CHARLotte CItY CeNteR 237 south tryon street, charlotte, nc 28202 $154 single/double In the heart of Charlotte’s uptown financial and entertainment district, this upscale Courtyard by Marriott — Charlotte City Center Hotel is perfect for both business and leisure travel.
3. hilton charlotte center city
SOLINN HAMPtoN uPtoWN D CHARLotte O king T!Jr. blvd., charlotte, nc, 28202 530 dr. Martin lutherU
OLD INN CHARLotte uPtoWN HILtoN S GARDeN OU ! 508 e Martin luther king T Jr. blvd., charlotte, nc, 28202 HILtoN CHARLotte CeNteR CItY 222 east third street, charlotte, nc, 28202 $177 single/ $187 double
This downtown Charlotte hotel is located directly across from the Charlotte Convention Center and close to the city’s best attractions and dining. oMni charlotte hotel
oMNI CHARLotte HoteL 132 e. trade street, charlotte, north carolina 28202 $154 single/double This four-diamond luxury hotel sparkles in the heart of Charlotte’s financial district just two blocks from the Charlotte Convention Center and many of the city’s other cultural and entertainment highlights.
reserve your hotel rooM online throuGh ispa expo housinG for a chance to win a free 2-niGht stay durinG ispa expo! www.sleepproducts.orG/ispaexpo.
46 | BedTimes | January 2010 10
Reservation deadline February 1, 2010
6 Great Reasons to Book with Official ISPA EXPO Hotels 1. You still qualify to earn frequent-stay points towards your hotel rewards program when you reserve a room at an official ISPA EXPO hotel. 2. A time-saving one-stop transaction — register and make your hotel reservations online at www.sleepproducts.org/ ISPAEXPO/Hoteltravel
3. Flexible arrangements and terms.
4. No penalty if reservation is cancelled before cutoff date. 5. Enhanced networking with other EXPO attendees.
COUrtYArd bY MArrIOtt CHArlOttE CItY CENtEr
HAMPtON INN CHArlOttE SOUPtOwN
HIltON CHArlOttE CENtEr CItY
149 11 dinner Only 5pm-10pm Yes No Complimentary
400 22 6am-12am
Yes No Yes, fees vary based on service requested Complimentary
181 4 dinner Only 5pm-10pm Yes No Complimentary
Inside lap pool
Voice Mail data Ports
Yes Yes, wired and wireless Ember grill 6:30am-2:30pm 4:30pm-10pm
Courtyard Café M-F 6:30am-10am Several dining options nearby
Complimentary On the House® hot breakfast & On the runtM breakfast bags M-F dining options nearby Complimentary
HOtEl AMENItIES total rooms total Floors room Service Hours In-room Coffee Concierge level business Center
Parking — Self/Valet
tHE wEStIN CHArlOttE
6. Convenience of closest hotels in walking distance to the Convention Center and ISPA EXPO 2010.
700 25 24 hrs.
Self: $18/day Valet: $23/day
HIltON gArdEN INN CHArlOttE SOUPtOwN
OMNI CHArlOttE HOtEl
181 15 dinner Only 5pm-10pm Yes No Complimentary
374 14 24 hrs.
Yes Yes, 2 floors Complimentary
$12 per person per day (YMCA) $12 per person per day (YMCA) Yes Yes
Yes Yes Yes, fees vary based on service requested Complimentary
Coastal Kitchen & Coastal bar
great American grill Serves breakfast, lunch, dinner
Illume Mediterranean bistro M-F 6:30am-10pm S-S 7am-10-pm
Self: $18/day Valet: $25/day
Self: $15/day Valet: $22/day
BedTimes | January 2010 |
ReGISteRING FoR ISPA exPo 2010 IS eASY Register by February 10, 2010 to receive your badge by mail* and avoid registration lines at the show. 8 online: Use your credit card to
register online at www.sleepproducts. org/ispaexpo/registration. Sign up here for all EXPO events and make your hotel and travel reservations too.
2 fax: Fax your completed registration form with full credit card payment to 1-508-759-4552. + Mail: Mail your completed
registration form and payment to: ISPA EXPO 2010, c/o CDS, 107 Waterhouse Road, Bourne, MA 02532 USA.
payment ISPA accepts company checks, American Express, VISA and MasterCard. Note: If paying by company check, complete and mail check with the enclosed form (or download a PDF form at www.sleepproducts.org/ ISPAEXPO/Registration). No wire payments accepted. Registrations will not be processed without payment.
confirmation All registrations received by February 10, 2010 will be confirmed in writing via email.
cancellation Full refund less $30 administrative fee if written request is received at ISPA by February 10, 2010; no refund thereafter. *Note: International registrants will not receive badges or materials in advance — bring your confirmation letter to the onsite Advance Registration desk for expedited service.
HoW to MAKe A HoteL ReSeRvAtIoN AND ReCeIve ISPA exPo 2010 DISCouNteD RAteS the ispa expo official housing agent (ispa expo housing) is available to book hotel reservations at negotiated discounted rates. all room charges are subject to the current tax of 16.25%, plus any applicable surcharge. triple and quadruple occupancy may incur additional charges. reservations will be processed on a first-come, first-served basis until february 1, 2010. ispa expo housing reserves the right to assign another hotel if your choice(s) are not available.
on-line: visit www.sleepproducts.org/ispaexpo/hoteltravel. follow the instructions to reserve your hotel room. if you are in need of a group of rooms, simply select “Group booking” to book accommodations. toll-free: call the ispa expo housing agent toll free at 800-220-5918. travel consultants are available Monday - friday, 8:00 am - 5:00 p.m. u.s. central standard time and can help with all aspects of your travel. international travelers please phone 1-312-527-7300. fax or Mail: visit www.sleepproducts.org/ispaexpo/hoteltravel and download the ispa expo 2010 hotel reservation form in its entirety. complete one form for each room request. please do not fax and mail your form as this can result in duplicate reservations. include your credit card information. fax completed form to ispa expo 2010 at 1-312-329-9513. or mail the form to ispa expo housing, 110 west hubbard, chicago, il 60654 usa. room deposit must accompany form. sorry, no wire transfers will be accepted. rooM confirMations: ispa expo official housing will process your room reservation and email a confirmation indicating your hotel assignment within 72 hours. this is the only confirmation that you will receive. your selected hotel will honor the ispa expo housing confirmation. please be sure to read your confirmation thoroughly for any policies specific to your hotel. hotel chanGes and cancellations: all changes or cancellations to your hotel reservations must be made directly with ispa expo official housing no later than Monday, february 1, 2010. please do not contact ispa headquarters. cancellations made less than 72 hours of arrival and no shows will be subject to a penalty charge of first night’s room and tax. early departure fee: there may be an early departure fee, typically one night room and tax, if you check out of the hotel earlier than your confirmed departure date. this fee is waived if 72-hour notice is provided prior to your arrival date. please refer to your official housing confirmation for policies specific to your hotel as hotel policies vary. reserve your hotel rooM online throuGh ispa expo housinG for a chance to win a free 2-niGht stay durinG ispa expo! WWW.SLeePPRoDuCtS.oRG/ISPAexPo ispa has retained the travel technology Group (ttG), an independent third party, as the official housing and travel agency for ispa expo 2010. as a result, ttG will process all hotel arrangements for expo attendees, and ispa will have no responsibility for any arrangement booked through ttG. ttG pays ispa a fee to help offset ispa’s costs of hosting expo 2010. 9
48 | BedTimes | January 2010
BEST OF THE BEST
TRIPLE AWARD AT INTERZUM
EQUITABLE AND ECO-FRIENDLY COTTON Consumers are becoming increasingly selective about the quality and origin of textile products. The demand for pure and ethically produced materials continues to grow. EcoFair mattress fabric from Deslee Textiles USA meets this need in two ways: ‘Eco’ stands for organically cultivated cotton; ‘Fair’ for equitable business practice. Thus, EcoFair … In this way, Deslee Textiles USA , demonstrates its social commitment to sustainable commerce, and by purchasing products produced in humane working conditions and a healthy living environment - products for which a fair price is paid.
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ENHANCE YOUR LIFE. Celliant™ is the world’s first and only technical performance fiber that is clinically proven to enhance oxygen levels in the body. Increased oxygen levels have been proven to relieve pain, promote quicker healing, heighten athletic performance, improve sleep quality and improve overall wellness. Celliant™ fiber is specially formulated to be knit or woven into a wide range of apparel and bedding products. Deslee Textiles and T3, owner of the Iron Man brand, are bringing this exclusive offer to the US market.
WWW.DESLEETEXTILES.COM MEET US AT ISPA2010 BOOTH 2431
Attendee Advance Registration Form
March 3-6, 2010 Charlotte Convention Center
(Deadline: February 10, 2010)
Charlotte, NC USA
SAVE TIME AND REGISTER ONLINE AT WWW.SLEEPPRODUCTS.ORG/ISPAEXPO
REGISTRANT INFO One registration per form. Photocopy form for additional registrations. � Mr.
TYPE OR PRINT CLEARLY)
RECEIVED AT ISPA BY FEBRUARY 10
ISPA Member Manufacturer ISPA Member Supplier Non-Member Manufacturer Non-Member Supplier/Other Spouse/Guest Non-Industry (LIMIT ONE PER REGISTRANT) Spouse/Non-Industry Guest Name:
Company Name Preferred Mailing Address–Street Address Street Address City
Zip Code/Postal Code
COUNTRY AND CITY CODES)
� � � � �
Mattress Manufacturer Factory Direct Industry Supplier Financial/Investment Other
BUYING POWER (CHECK � � � �
POSITION (CHECK � � � � � � � � �
Final Decision Recommend Influence N/A
Units per day:
� 101-250 � 1000+
� <100 � 501-1,000
DOLLARS, DRAWN ON A
Tuesday, March 2 ISPA Member Non-member
SEMINARS & INDUSTRY BREAKFAST Tuesday, March 2 Mattress Safety – What You 3:00-5:00pm Need to Know
Advance Fees Full Fees
� I wish to purchase an extra ticket for my spouse/guest � $50 7:45-10:00am Industry Breakfast and Keynote
Thursday, March 4 7:45-9:00am
Teaming with Retailers to Improve the Customer Experience
Wednesday, March 3 2:00-3:00pm Industry Forecast – What Will the Future Look Like? Thursday, March 4 2:00-3:00pm Mattress Recycling & Disposal – Opportunities and Challenges Friday, March 5 2:00-3:00pm “Green” – What Does It Really Mean?
Name Printed on card:
Advance Fees Full Fees
� Free to Members
� Free to Members
� Free to Members
� Please check here if you have a special need due to disability, and attach a written description of your requirements.
BANK PAYABLE TO
� American Express
Friday, March 5
Full payment must accompany this form. Mail or fax (not both) completed forms with payment to: ISPA 2010, c/o CDS, 107 Waterhouse Road, Bourne, MA 02532; Fax: 508-759-4552. For assistance, contact ISPA at email@example.com. Note cancellation & refund policy. No wire transfers. (U.S.
$105 $325 $175 $525
One ticket to the Industry Breakfast is included with your registration. You MUST select this box if you plan to attend. � Yes, I will attend Industry Breakfast on Friday, 7:45-10:00am
� Company Check enclosed.
� � � �
Corporate Off./Owner/President CFO/Financial Officer Vice President General Management Manufacturing/Production Mgmt. Purchasing Sales/Marketing Mgmt. R&D/Engineer Other:
MANUFACTURING CAPACITY (CHECK
$80 $250 $150 $425
� � � �
Open to personnel from non-U.S. based bedding manufacturing companies. Factory Tour registrants must also register for EXPO above. Complete registrations must be received at ISPA by February 10.
I am attending ISPA EXPO for the first time. � Yes � No ONE)
RECEIVED AT ISPA AFTER FEBRUARY 10
E-mail BUSINESS (CHECK
EXPO REGISTRATION Admission to exhibits, Welcome Reception & Industry Breakfast included. Manufacturer defined as the manufacturer of end-product mattresses. Advance Fees Full Fees
GRAND TOTAL: $
CANCELLATION & REFUND POLICY Full refund less $30 admin. fee (plus $50 fee for Factory Tour) if written request is received at ISPA by Feb. 10, 2010; no refund thereafter.
FOR OFFICE USE ONLY
“BedTimes is and always has been great! It is where I get my news!” “It’s a quick reference to find suppliers.” “Readable. Concise. Timely.” “BedTimes is my link to the industry.”
in the free world We are proud to welcome the newest members of the band:
Artaban International, Mexico and Restolex, India Who join our recently added members: Therapedic - Northern California (SleepRite Industries) Therapedic - Colorado (Sermano, Ltd.) Therapedic - Idaho (Everton Mattress) Therapedic - Florida (Regal Mattress) Therapedic - Mid-Atlantic (Cotton Belt, Inc.) World Market Center High Point Market Tupelo Market Therapedic - Pennsylvania (PA Bedding Company) Las Vegas Plaza Suites Building Building #3 Therapedic - Texas (Winco) Building B, Suite 822 Suite I-535 Space #3000
www.therapedic.com â€˘ 800-314-4433
IndustryNews Simmons files prepackaged bankruptcy plan A
tlanta-based mattress maker Simmons has filed a prepackaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy plan with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. If the plan is approved, Simmons will be sold to Ares Management LLC and the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, which also own National Bedding Co., the largest manufacturer of bedding under the Serta brand name. Simmons’ operations in Canada and Puerto Rico are not included in the bankruptcy filing, but are included in the purchase agreement. Simmons said it expects to continue normal operations throughout the
Chapter 11 process and that senior secured bank lenders, vendors, suppliers and employees will be paid in full. At the time of the filing on Nov. 16, the company said it intended to emerge from Chapter 11 within 60 days. The financial restructuring will allow Simmons to significantly reduce its indebtedness, from $1 billion to about $450 million. At the time of the filing, Simmons had approximately $50 million in cash, enough to satisfy customary obligations associated with daily operations. It has arranged for a $35 million debtor-in-possession revolving credit facility administered by Deutsche Bank.
Culp posts net income gain in 2nd quarter
abric supplier Culp Inc. reported net income for its fiscal 2010 second quarter of $2.9 million, compared with a net loss of $40.9 million for the same period a year ago. The net loss for the second quarter of fiscal 2009 included charges of $31.2 million to establish a valuation allowance against net deferred tax assets and $11.8 million in restructuring charges for Culp’s upholstery business. The High Point, N.C.-based company reported net sales for its second quarter were $49.7 million, a 5% decrease from the $52.3 million posted for the same quarter of 2009. The decrease is the smallest year-over-year decline since the third quarter of fiscal 2008, the company said. Cash flow from operations for the second quarter of 2010 was $6.1 million. Culp attributed the stronger cash flow to the profitability in mattress fabrics, a profit turnaround in upholstery fabrics and improved working capital management. Mattress fabric sales for the second quarter were $28.2 million, an increase of 1% over the same period a year ago, Culp said. “Our improved performance in mattress fabrics reflects the benefits of the ongoing investments we have made,” said Frank Saxon, Culp president and chief executive officer. “During the second quarter, we completed the installation of additional equipment to further expand our knit capacity and improve our production capabilities for both knits and wovens. We have also initiated the purchase of state-of-the-art finishing equipment for our growing knit business to be installed during our third fiscal quarter. As a result, Culp will be fully vertically integrated.” The company said its financial position continued to strengthen during the second quarter of fiscal 2010. Its ending cash balance of $19.6 million exceeded total debt of $16.4 million for the first time in more than 30 years. “Our improved performance reflects the benefits of a leaner and more efficient operating platform and aggressive marketing initiatives,” Saxon said. “We are especially pleased with the turnaround in profitability for our upholstery fabrics business and continued solid profitability in our mattress fabrics segment.”
“Having received overwhelming support from our lenders and note holders through our recently completed solicitation process, we now look forward to quickly emerging from Chapter 11 and completing the transaction that will allow Simmons Bedding to continue its legacy of operational excellence, innovation and customer satisfaction,” said Steve Fendrich, Simmons president and chief operating officer. “Our manufacturing plants will operate as usual and our customers should continue to expect the same great service and quality they have received prior to and during this restructuring process.”
Chinese dumping innersprings, Canada says The Canadian International Trade Tribunal has found that innerspring units exported from China are being dumped on the Canadian market, causing injury to the domestic industry. The finding applies to innersprings with or without edge guards. Anti-dumping duties are to be collected by the Canada Border Services Agency. The amount of the duty and the reasons for the finding had not been announced at press time. The complainant in the case was Globe Spring & Cushion Co. of Toronto, a division of Leggett & Platt. L&P filed a similar complaint in the United States, which, in early 2008, resulted in anti-dumping duties on innersprings from China, Vietnam and South Africa.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
Company settles false advertising charges about bamboo
he U.S. Federal Trade Commission has announced that clothing manufacturer Bamboosa has settled charges that its claimed use of bamboo fiber in its products was false. This is one of several “greenwashing” cases the FTC has brought since August; most have been settled. The FTC alleged that Bamboosa
falsely claimed that its products were 100% bamboo fiber when, in fact, the fiber was manufactured rayon created from cellulose obtained from bamboo plants. The FTC also alleged that Bamboosa had falsely claimed that its bamboo fiber provided anti-microbial benefits. The FTC disagreed, arguing that
Doesn’t your mattress deserve to be spoiled? Ideal Quilting’s in-house design team will wrap your mattress with the finest fabrics and custom quilting of the highest grade. We utilize the latest innovations and styles to pamper your mattress with unique, one-of-a-kind designs. For more information visit us at idealquilting.com, contact us toll free at 1.877.748.8402 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
54 | BedTimes | January 2010
the rayon manufacturing process eliminates any of the natural properties that might be present in the bamboo plant itself. According to an article published by the online magazine Environmental Leader, Bamboosa based its “green” claims on its supplier’s statements calling the material bamboo fiber. The article also quotes Deborah Morrison, an advertising professor at the University of Oregon and co-founder of the Greenwashing Index. “Brand managers and marketers using green claims should make every effort to substantiate information and, simply put, tell the truth,” she said. “Relying on other people’s claims isn’t substantiation. If they do not, they not only fail their own brand and face fines or regulatory action, they add to increasing green noise.” In settling the charges, Bamboosa agreed not to make any future claims that are not backed by reliable evidence and not to claim that the clothing it sells contains bamboo fiber. (Separately, the FTC has stated that it would be lawful to describe such fiber as rayon made from bamboo.) www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
Infant deaths prompt recall of baby beds T
he U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced the voluntary recall of about 24,000 Amby Baby Motion Beds manufactured by Minneapolis-based Amby Baby USA. The company said it is aware of two infants who suffocated to death in the bed, one in Lawrenceville, Ga., in June and one in Gresham, Ore., in August. The Amby Baby Motion Bed consists of a steel frame and a fabric hammock, which are connected by a large spring and metal crossbar. The side-to-side shifting or tilting of the hammock can cause the infant to roll and become trapped or wedged against the hammock’s fabric or mattress pad, resulting in a suffocation hazard, according to the CPSC. The beds, manufactured in China, were sold online through Ambybaby.com and other Internet retailers from January 2003 through October 2009 for about $250. There is only one model. It can be identified by a label sewn onto the hammock that says, “Amby—Babies Love It, Naturally.” The CPSC said consumers should immediately stop using the Amby Baby Motion Bed and contact Amby Baby USA at 866544-9721 or www.ambybaby.com for a free repair kit. “Parents and caregivers are urged to find an alternative, safe sleeping environment for their baby,” the CPSC said in the recall notice. www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
Short Select Comfort selling more stock Airbed manufacturer and retailer Select Comfort announced in early December that it would sell additional stock and use the proceeds to increase working capital and pay down debt. The Minneapolis-based company did not say how many shares it would sell but did say the offering would meet a requirement of an amended credit agreement. Piper Jaffray will manage the underwritten public offering.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
Creative Ticking parent turns 30, expands offerings Beverly Knits, a textile supplier based in Gastonia, N.C., is celebrating its 30th anniversary as a manufacturer of circular knits. Creative Ticking, the company’s mattress fabric sales unit, opened for business in 2005. In May 2008, Creative Ticking acquired the U.S. assets of Anton Cramer & Co., a Greven, Germanybased textile supplier. “We integrated many of the Anton Cramer designs and patterns into our existing lines and are currently developing additional fabrics for the mattress market,” said Ronald Sytz, Creative Ticking owner and chief executive officer. Creative Ticking markets a patented FR fabric line under the name TioTec. The collection recently was expanded to include patented TioTec Free, a chlorine-free FR fabric. “We believe we have an important answer to chemically treated goods and, as we all know, ‘green’ is becoming increasingly important to the buying public,” said Jerry Pratt, Creative Ticking president. “TioTec Free is inherently FR, does not wash out, yet does not use any of the potentially hazardous chemicals used in fabric manufacture, including antimony, mercury, melamine and many more.” The company’s Gastonia manufacturing facility covers 170,000 square feet and holds 180 knitting machines. The plant’s 135 employees produce more than 19 million meters of fabric annually for a number of business segments.
56 | BedTimes | January 2010
Short Vi-Spring has new Studio Luxury mattress maker ViSpring, which is based in Devon, England, has opened its new Studio on the third floor of upscale department store Harrods in London. The newly designed area displays the entire Vi-Spring collection of mattresses, divans, headboards and accessories, including the Majesty, an $85,000 bed exclusive to Harrods. The department is staffed by bedding experts and is designed to offer “an inspirational and life-changing environment” for testing ViSpring handmade beds, the company said.
GSG Web site goes multilingual
Alliance Sleep Products, a Restonic licensee with headquarters in Buffalo, N.Y., opened a new 60,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in November. The plant is needed to support the mattress maker’s growing dealer base, said to Tom Comer, Alliance Sleep Products chief executive officer.
Mattress machinery supplier Global Systems Group, a division of Carthage, Mo.-based Leggett & Platt, has upgraded its Web site, www.gsgcompanies.com. A key change is the addition of product pages in several languages—English, French, German, Portuguese and Spanish—that are designed to better serve an international clientele. The new site features continually updated content, improved navigation and other functions designed to make it easier for customers to use. “The improved Web site helps us better serve a large cross section of the global bedding industry,” said Randy Metcalf, GSG marketing manager.
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Blumenthal Print Works shuts doors Ticking and upholstery supplier Blumenthal Print Works Inc., based in New Orleans, has closed after 85 years in business. Blumenthal was forced to cease operations on Nov. 23 after a federal bankruptcy judge ordered the liquidation of its assets. The move ended a court proceeding that began in October 2008 when the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. At that time, Blumenthal intended to reorganize and seek new investors. According to the filing, Harry Blumenthal, president and chief executive officer, had loaned between $10 million and $13 million of his own money to the company. That action drew the ire of Blumenthal’s largest creditor, Whitney National Bank of New Orleans, which said Harry Blumenthal owed the bank about $20 million and should have made payments to Whitney, not his company.
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Early in November 2009, the bank cited Blumenthal Print Works’ “continuing enormous losses” in asking the judge to immediately liquidate the company and give the assets to Whitney. The court granted the request, giving Whitney title to Blumenthal’s real estate in South Carolina and other assets, including $690,000 deposited in an escrow account. Blumenthal, whose grandfather founded the company, told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that the company had trouble adjusting to changing market conditions, including the rise of Chinese imports; the mattress industry’s switch to single-sided mattresses, which cut ticking sales in half; and interest in knits, which slashed demand for damasks. The 28 workers in the company’s New Orleans headquarters and about 150 workers at its manufacturing plant in Marion, S.C., were laid off.
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BedTimes | January 2010 |
Sleep to Live touts quality assurance technology
attress maker Sleep to Live has designed patent-pending quality assurance machinery it calls Inline Comfort Support Analysis. The technology will be installed at all company-owned and licensee manufacturing facilities around the globe.
The machine tests finished mattresses to ensure that they perform consistently. It works hand-in-hand with the patented Sleep to Live in-store diagnostic system and was developed at the Sleep to Live Institute, the company’s research center in Joplin, Mo. Sleep to Live is
headquartered in Mebane, N.C. “The addition of the ICSA technology guarantees that our customers receive the right bed for their unique body type,” said Robert Oexman, director of the Sleep to Live Institute. The new machinery goes beyond traditional indention load deflection machinery, the company said. It measures the resistance and recovery of a force in the comfort layers of a mattress, as well as reactions of the bed’s support layers to a variety of body types. “Because the Sleep to Live mattress is scientifically customized to provide the customer with the ideal postural support, we needed to create a significantly more indepth, multidimensional testing process,” said Joe Schmoeller, Sleep to Live senior vice president of operations.
Short Natura crib mattress lauded Natura World’s Organic II Crib Mattress has been named a 2009 Greatest Product by iParenting Media. The mattress was selected for the award by a panel of judges, including a parent, who completed a survey and provided feedback on their personal experience with the product. “We work regularly with mom bloggers who test our products and review them for other moms because we understand the importance of ‘mom-approved,’ ” said Julia Rosien, communications director for the Cambridge, Ontario-based company. The mattress is made of coconut coir, all-natural latex, 100% certified organic cotton and 100% certified organic wool.
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Natura pillows comforting Canadian soldiers M attress and sleep accessories manufacturer Natura World is co-sponsoring “Pillows for Troops,” a campaign to equip Canadian soldiers in Afghanistan with Natura travel pillows. The program launched Nov. 11 on Canada’s Remembrance Day during ceremonies at Natura headquarters in Cambridge, Ontario, and at retailer JS Furniture. The program honors the memory of Cpl. James Hayward Arnal, who was killed during his third tour of duty in Afghanistan in July 2008. He was 25. Arnal was an employee of Winnipeg, Manitoba-based retailer JS Furniture, which was inspired to create the campaign as a way to honor him. He had carried a Natura
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Support the troops For a small donation, children and adults can send a Natura World travel pillow and write a personal note to Canadian soldiers serving in Afghanistan.
pillow strapped to his leg on his first tour of duty and on subsequent tours took extra pillows to share with his buddies. For a $5 donation, contributors to “Pillows for Troops” can send a travel pillow, along with a personal
note to a Canadian soldier. The goal is to provide 5,000 pillows to soldiers—one for each soldier leaving Canada for Afghanistan until the end of 2011. Also called the “Comfort Campaign,” the program has a number of other sponsors, including the Canadian government, civic groups and media outlets. Natura is providing updates on the campaign through Facebook and Twitter and on its blog, www.naturaworld.com/blog. JS Furniture has created a nonprofit foundation that sponsors a number of programs related to the war in Afghanistan, including supporting military families and helping fund a school for Afghan children.
Carlitz’s son organizes marathon in Thailand Phil Carlitz, son of bedding veteran Stuart Carlitz, and his friend Andrew Hudis have been named among the “152 Inspiring Heroes” of 2009 by Runner’s World magazine. The two organized and took part in the first Rustic Pathways Tribe-to-Tribe Marathon held in Thailand. The marathon benefited “Karen” refugees, a minority group forced to flee persecution in Myanmar. The race, which drew 550 runners from around the world, raised $10,000 for a Thai orphanage caring for Karen children. Most of the funds will be used to cover education costs. Carlitz and Hudis first learned of the plight of the Karen people in July 2008, when participating in Rustic Pathways, a global community service program that took them to Southeast Asia. The 16-year-olds resolved to do something to help the Karen children they met and now have committed to help run the marathon for a decade. Their goal is to raise $250,000 annually for the refugees. Eclipse International, which has factories in and around Thailand, will continue as a corporate sponsor for future Tribe-to-Tribe marathons, said Stuart Carlitz, chief executive officer of Eclipse International and Eastman House.
Short Industry raises funds for autism In October, 15,000 people participated in the second annual Walk Now for Autism in Columbus, Ohio, including Doug Krinsky, a sales manager for Restonic’s Columbus licensee. Krinsky and his 11-member team raised nearly $11,000 for Autism Speaks. The New York-based organization works to increase awareness of autism spectrum disorders, funds research into the causes, prevention and treatments for autism, and advocates for individuals with autism and their families. Krinsky also is organizer of the second annual poker fund-raiser for Autism Speaks. The event will be Feb. 2 during the Las Vegas Market.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
Simmons uses contests to reach consumers
n an effort to more directly target consumers and boost brand awareness, Atlanta-based Simmons is running a series of online contests. The bedding maker recently announced the winners of its “I Really Want My Beautyrest Mattress” contest, held online from July 1 to Sept. 30. On Dec. 1, Simmons launched an online “Question of the Day Sweepstakes,” which runs through Jan. 31. The contests are part of an overall strategy “designed to engage consumers in a dialogue that provides them with a better understanding of Simmons and of how our products will help them obtain a better night’s sleep,” said Tim Oakhill, executive vice president of marketing. Simmons received 250 entries for its “I Really Want My Beautyrest Mattress” contest and more than 37,000 votes were cast. Participation was promoted through online tools including links at the Simmons and Beautyrest home pages, a specific contest Web site, Facebook updates and Twitter posts. Each of the 10 winners received a Beautyrest mattress. View the winning entries at http://contest.simmons.com. The “Question of the Day Sweepstakes,” found at http://sweepstakes.simmons.com, features a daily question about Simmons brands, company history and sleep tips. Winners are chosen daily and each receives pillows or sheets, courtesy of Simmons licensee Louisville Bedding Co.
Carpenter’s ‘Sleep Better’ campaign hosts Jewel event
n the fall, singer and songwriter Jewel autographed copies of her CD “Lullaby” at an event hosted by the consumer products division of Carpenter Co. and retailer JCPen- Promotional partnership Singer-song ney at the department writer Jewel greeted fans and signed store’s new New York CDs at an event sponsored by Carpenter Co. location. The Oct. 14 event was part of Richmond, Va.-based Carpenter’s year-long consumer education and marketing campaign, “Sleep Better. Dream Bigger.” The company has said that the goal of the campaign was to “help Americans realize the connection between getting better sleep and achieving their hopes and dreams.” Carpenter has teamed up with Jewel over the course of its campaign and hosted a month-long series of events in the singer’s hometown of Stephenville, Texas, last summer.
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ISPANews ‘Green’ task force seeks members
he International Sleep Products Association is seeking volunteers for a new task force that will help define industry consensus on “green” mattress issues. A main objective of the task force will be to recommend how the industry should address consumer and market confusion about claims regarding the environmentally friendly qualities of mattresses. The task force will work closely with the Specialty Sleep Association, which expects to announce on Jan. 30 the results of its initiative to define relevant environmental terms and identify existing standards that may apply to mattresses. The ISPA task force will be broad based, representing suppliers of all major components; all finished product groups in the mattress category; a cross-section of small, medium and large mattress producers; a mix of technical and marketing talent; and representatives of other sectors or groups, including the SSA and retailers. It will be divided into subcommittees, if needed. Specific issues the task force will consider include: ➤ Should the effort focus only on consumer issues regarding finished products or also encompass other issues? ➤ What terms should the industry define and how? ➤ Are existing single- and multiattribute standards relevant to mattresses? What are the pros and cons of the industry developing a standard or green scoring system? Who should develop such a standard? If you would like to participate, contact Ryan Trainer, ISPA general counsel and executive vice president, at email@example.com or 703-683-8371, Ext. 1118, or Deb Chapman, ISPA director of marketing and member services, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703-683-8371, Ext. 1127.
ISPA shifts duties among staff
he International Sleep Products Association has reorganized how its finance operations are handled following the departure of Bob Bobowski, ISPA chief financial officer. Bobowski left ISPA in November. His duties have been reassigned to other staff. Catherine Lyons, ISPA vice president of meetings and trade show management, now oversees the financial administrative functions. She has a strong finance background, with more than 20 years of experience with trade associations where she has had budget and project management responsibilities. She received bachelor’s degree in finance from the University of Maryland. During the transition, ISPA has retained an independent consultant with auditing experience at a major accounting firm to assist Lyons. Sandy Stewart, ISPA’s long-time accountant, continues to handle day-to-day accounting duties and reports to Lyons. In addition, Debi Sutton, ISPA vice president of membership and member services, will assume the human resources and building administration duties that fell under Bobowski’s purview.
Product Safety & Recall Directory available Members of the International Sleep Products Association can now receive a Product Safety & Recall Directory. The directory is published by ADK Information Services and lists nearly 200 service providers in 40 countries, enabling manufacturers to find testing labs, product liability attorneys, product safety consultants, insurers, call centers, product collection and destruction companies, and other vendors that can help companies design and implement product safety programs or recall defective products. The directory can be found in the “Advocacy Issues” section of the ISPA Web site, www.sleepproducts.org.
ISPA board holds productive meeting The board of the International Sleep Products Association met Nov. 4 during the ISPA Industry Conference and Exhibition in Bonita Springs, Fla., to consider a number of issues. Among other things, the ISPA board: ➤ Approved the association’s 2010 budget ➤ Ratified several trustee and leadership appointments ➤ Approved ISPA’s ongoing efforts to encourage the development of more recycling centers to dismantle used mattresses and to explore options for funding efforts ➤ Authorized the formation of a task force to define (in cooperation with the Specialty Sleep Association)
industry priorities regarding “green” issues and to recommend courses of action to ISPA leadership ➤D iscussed highlights of a recent survey of members, nonmembers and mattress retailers about whether ISPA’s programs are providing the highest value, and if not, what changes the association should consider. In addition, ISPA Chairman Don Wright announced that board member Bryan Smith, president of Southerland Inc., will lead an executive search committee that will recommend who should fill the open position of ISPA president.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
IndustryConference More than 220 bedding execs gather for event Conference includes retailers for first time
he 2009 ISPA Industry Conference and Exhibition exceeded expectations when more than 220 mattress industry manufacturers, suppliers and retailers attended the two-day educational and networking event held Nov. 4-6 in Bonita Springs, Fla. It was the first time the conference included retailers. Despite tough economic conditions, attendance was strong and educational sessions were filled. “When the economy is down, it’s more important than ever to stay connected, to learn together and keep ourselves and our businesses strong so that when business inevi-
tably turns around, we are ready,” said Don Wright, chairman of the International Sleep Products Association. “The conference provided top-notch educational sessions and a variety of networking events that offered something for all attendees.” To help attendees navigate the currently turbulent mattress market, ISPA offered educational sessions on several timely topics: ➤ Attendees learned how to understand and target today’s “grounded consumer” from studies presented by Context-Based Research Group. ➤ Socialnomics author Erik Qual-
Twenty-eight mattress suppliers and manufacturers sponsored the 2009 ISPA Industry Conference and Exhibition. Gold Sponsors FXI Foamex Innovations Natura World Silver Sponsors American & Efird Inc. Carpenter Co. Flexible Foam Products Inc. Intertek Latex International Leggett & Platt Bronze Exhibitors Atlanta Attachment Co. Eastman House/Eclipse International
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Enkev Group BV Estes Forwarding Worldwide Henkel Corp. Hickory Springs Mfg. Co. The Israeli Processing Co. Ltd. Jones Fiber Products Inc. Latexco LLC OHM Systems Radium Foam BV SABA North America SGS U.S. Testing Co. Inc. Simalfa Springs Creative-Firegard Stork Twin City Testing Therapedic International Tietex Underwriters Laboratories Wright of Thomasville
man conducted a session on how to use social media such as Twitter and Facebook. ➤ A panel of experts discussed several aspects of going “green,” ISPA’s sustainability initiative and efforts to promote responsible mattress disposal. ➤ Marty Walker, vice president of business development for Ermcar Inc., offered insights into how to meet customer expectations and “sell the experience.” During the conference, many attendees took advantage of the opportunity to share their thoughts on ISPA programs, services and priorities at roundtable discussions. “The feedback doesn’t end at the conference,” said Debi Sutton, ISPA vice president of marketing and member services. “The surveys that we sent out to the membership and beyond were just the beginning of the process. We need continual input from our members to keep ISPA’s programs and services pertinent and highly valued.” To share thoughts and ideas, email Sutton at email@example.com. www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
Time to unwind, network
he 2009 ISPA Industry Conference and Exhibition included two evening parties, a Welcome Reception sponsored by FXI Foamex Innovations and a Poolside Networking Reception sponsored by Natura World. (All photo IDs are left to right.)
Terry Spears, Glenda Spears and Bob Ashburn, all of Englander; and Paul Block, Galkin.
Roger Cunningham, The Bed Store; and Gerry Morris, Sleep Trust.
John Stowe, Kingsdown; and Mark Chase, W.S. Badcock.
Ralph Rossdeutscher, Natura World; and Gerry Wong, Mega Group USA.
Ed Lilly, Lilly Management Group; and Ed Scott, Stylution.
Hassan Al-Hazeem, Intercoil International; and Michael Pino, SOL Global.
Alfredo Lopez, El Dorado Furniture; Lissa Coffey, Better Sleep Council; Pedro Capo, El Dorado Furniture; and Wade Wallace, Tietex.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
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CostManagement Coping with customers who owe money
Clear financial policies, well-trained staff can head off problems By Rhonda R. Savage
ou may not be fond of people who owe you money. They’re not crazy about you either. They feel guilty if they’re late with a payment and burdened because they’ve procrastinated. They know it’s not your fault, but they feel pressured and unhappy nonetheless. Today, companies are more stressed than ever about finances. Your customer can be upset if he receives what he considers a financial surprise. It’s wise to remember that a surprised customer first will be embarrassed and then likely angry. If you want to avoid this stress, anger and frustration, you need to take steps to clearly outline your company’s financial policies. Clear policies are a very real part of customer service, especially when presented by an empathetic, knowledgeable staff. In addition, for policies to be effective, they must be well
For policies to be effective, they must be well understood by staff and backed up by the upper management team. understood by staff and backed up by the upper management team. Checking accounts receivable It’s the owner or chief executive officer’s role to oversee the company’s overall financial health. Even with the finest accountant or finance team in place, the top manager still should be an involved leader when it comes to financials. The top manager should review accounts receivable monthly, if www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
not more often. Many companies, especially smaller ones, have a policy that “everyone does everything.” But it’s better to designate finance responsibilities with clearly defined goals and expectations. Run a “clean” accounts receivable report that doesn’t include credit balances and analyze the 60+-day column, as well as the 90+-day. In general, the 60+-day column shouldn’t be more than 4% to 6% of what your customers owe you. The 90+-day column shouldn’t be more
than 2% to 4% of your accounts receivable. Also run a past-due report. Any accounts 30 days past due require a follow-up call. If your accounts receivable balance is less than half of your monthly production, your financial policies may, in fact, be too firm and you may be running off customers. But for your best, established customers who have good payment histories, you might consider flexibility in payment terms. If you do offer financial options, however, don’t extend them for more than three months and have a rebill policy or inform the customer that it will be due during or after the threemonth period. Also, verify the most recent credit history of the customer prior to advancing credit. Then give
BedTimes | January 2010 |
customers a written policy, spelling all this out. Finally, do you have old accounts on your accounts receivable that have been turned over for collection? Make sure these are adjusted off so you have a true accounts receivable that is collectable. Enter the adjusted amount into the customer’s record and keep a separate ledger file for this activity. Develop your financial guidelines Sit down with your team and review your company’s financial guidelines. It’s the responsibility of the entire team to collect money owed to the
If you’re revising your financial guidelines, you need to write a ‘change of policy’ letter regarding the new rules. The worst thing you can do is surprise the customer.
company, but as the company owner or top manager you need to approve and stand behind the policies, as well. That sounds obvious but have you ever noticed that a customer sometimes will try to go around a designated staff person to ask for a discount or new terms? One kind-hearted business owner said, “There’s no end run involved. I just plow right through my front office team and give the discount up front to the customer and I know I’m the problem.” As an owner or manager, you’ll undermine the customer’s trust and your staff ’s respect if you allow even one customer to do that. Discuss the philosophy of your business with your team. If you feel compelled to give a courtesy to a customer, consider a limited discount amount rather than a discounted percentage.
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If you’re revising your financial guidelines, you need to write a “change of policy” letter regarding the new rules. The worst thing you can do is surprise the customer. Remember that a surprised customer is an angry customer. If you’ve made special arrangements with certain customers, let them personally know in a professional yet warm manner that you’ve had a change in policy and that those new terms will apply to all future transactions. Owners or managers: Reinforce the efforts of your team. If a longtime customer asks for a courtesy, let him know that your staff will handle all the financials. If the owner shoots down the accountant or financial coordinator, she may not want to enforce company policies again. Owners who make arrangements contrary to company policy create
stress for the staff and ultimately can create spoiled customers who will continue to circumvent efforts at consistency. Criteria for financial options If necessary and feasible, you can allow flexibility in payment, but make sure customers clearly understand what their payment responsibilities are upfront. This avoids surprises later. For instance, break a payment into segments, such as half when an order is placed and half when product is delivered. For well-established customers with a great track record, consider half down and the balance in 90 days. And put everything in writing. These are just some of the guidelines you will need to discuss with your team. There is much more to consider, including your team’s verbal skills and ability to be empathetic
while remaining professional. Firm, consistent financial policies are just one layer of customer service that your customers deserve and expect. Your challenge is to have an open, honest, productive team meeting and look at your financial policies. How healthy is your business? BT Dr. Rhonda Savage is chief executive officer of a well-known practice management and consulting business and is a noted speaker on management, communication and leadership. As past president of the Washington State Dental Association, she is active in organized dentistry and has been in private practice for more than 16 years. For more information, check www.dentalmanagementu.com or email her at email@example.com.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
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EmployeeRelations There’s another kind of depression that should worry you You can help workers who may be struggling with mental health issues By Donna LaMar & Betsy Laney
ou’ve likely seen the symptoms in some of your staff: decreased productivity, irritability, absenteeism, low energy, withdrawal, possibly even anger and anxiety. While these could be the signs of a lazy, bored or unmotivated employee, they also could indicate something more serious—a depressed employee. Workplace depression may seem like a topic to avoid at all costs. After all, personal problems don’t belong at work, right? But the facts are startling. Depression affects more than 19 million American adults and is estimated to cost companies $12 billion in lost work and $11 billion in decreased productivity. Because 80% of people suffering from depression can be helped, it’s definitely worth your time to help a depressed employee. In fact, by addressing depression at work, companies can increase their bottom lines and decrease many everyday problems, including tardiness, conflicts, customer complaints and poor quality work. The key is to get past the perception that depression is “only a personal problem” that should be ignored at work.
What exactly is depression? Depression is both a mental and physiological condition that interferes with healthy functioning. It involves body, mind and spirit—feelings, thoughts and behaviors—and may occur one time or be recurrent. Sometimes it manifests in manic-depression, with both high and low mood swings. People suffering from depression often feel helpless and think their problems have no solutions. If you notice that an employee seems to have “checked out” at work, realize that depression may be to blame. Use the following suggestions for being proactive and helping your employees. 1. Educate yourself and your staff about depression As an employer or manager, one of your top priorities is caring for your employees. Empower your workers so they understand and can recognize depression. One initial step is to create a simple brochure about depression in the workplace and distribute it to all employees. If creating a brochure is too daunting a task, find an existing brochure from a physician, therapist or depression sup-
port group and customize it for your company. To take the message a step further, bring in someone from outside to teach your staff about depression and how to deal with it. Remember, all employees—not just managers and executives—need to know about depression. In many companies, managers don’t have significant daily contact with every employee. You want all employees to be able to recognize the signs so they can bring it to your attention. 2. Provide resources for those suffering from depression Resources include once-a-year depression screenings, referrals to mental health experts and centers, or even just being available to workers who need to talk. While larger companies might want to invest in written assessments and formal programs, smaller companies can be proactive simply by reaching out to an employee: “Hey, you look a little down. Let’s talk. I’m here for you. Can I help you get to counseling?” Small, compassionate gestures can go a long way toward helping someone deal with depression. 3. Talk to employees, but don’t try to make a diagnosis It’s critical to remember that you’re an employer, not a psychologist. You’re not trained to diagnose depression and you shouldn’t try. It’s your job to help your company by helping your people become better employees. With that said, you can be supportive by saying things such as “I’m concerned that you’ve been late to work a lot recently (or aren’t meeting performance goals or seem down). I’d like to help you get back on track.” Realize, too, that there’s help available to employers. You can call a counseling center or therapist and run things by them. You can say, “Here’s what’s going on with one of my em-
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ployees. Does this sound like something I need to address or suggest ways for him to get help?” Develop a relationship with a mental health provider or organization in your area that can offer you support so you can take the first step in dealing with workplace depression. 4. Create good working conditions Ecotherapy, which uses elements of nature to treat mental health problems, is well researched and effective. You can make small changes—even to a large factory—to create a healthy work environment: ➤ Add flora and fauna Research indicates that the color green and the fresh oxygen plants provide help us in many ways, including by raising our alpha brainwaves. Research also shows that being around animals can help reduce stress and improve moods.
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We’re not suggesting you bring dogs or cats into the mattress factory, but you could install a fish tank in the break room. Watching fish swim relaxes the brain and gives people a lift. ➤ Install full-spectrum light bulbs Lighting that mimics natural sunlight lifts our mood and helps the body process nutrients, such as vitamin D, which combats depression and increases energy levels. ➤ Allow personalized work spaces Cubicles and offices can reinforce isolation and depression. Allow employees to bring some personal items into the office that won’t interfere with their work. ➤ Foster connections to the natural world Encourage workers to get outside when they are on breaks or eating lunch. Spending time in a nearby wooded area or park—even a picnic table in the grass outside the
building—allows people to refresh and reconnect with the larger world. ➤ Make healthy food available If your company has a cafeteria or even a vending machine, make sure employees have healthy options. Nutritious foods are essential for mental and overall health. 5. Be prepared to act quickly, if necessary Be aware that depression, especially if it has lasted for a long time or stems from past trauma, can become life threatening. Be ready to act immediately—by contacting the employee’s family or physician, taking her to the hospital or calling the police. Don’t hesitate if there is even the slightest chance of someone hurting herself. This doesn’t mean you have to meddle in people’s personal lives. This is simply about having your finger on
But the workplace doesn’t have to be that way. Your staff can be motivated and productive—the kind of people who naturally attract customers and display high morale. With so many companies wanting to find ways to boost productivity and increase profits, dealing with depression in the workplace should be a priority for every employer. BT
Depression in the workplace may seem like a topic to avoid at all costs. After all, personal problems don’t belong at work, right? the pulse of your workers, so to speak, and being aware of sudden changes in their behavior. For example, if someone who seems depressed says to you, “Well, it’s been nice knowing you” or “I may not see you next week” those are hints that you need to act fast. Most depressed people want help but they often don’t know how to ask for it or they lack the energy and
ability to get help on their own. If you take the initiative to offer help, it usually will be readily accepted. In the end, ignoring workplace depression can hurt your company’s bottom line. Your employees will miss work, be tardy, lose focus and display a host of other negative behaviors or attitudes—and you’ll be frustrated by the lack of productivity.
Donna LaMar and Betsy Laney are psychologists who created The Farm, an educational, mental health and preventive program. They help people learn and grow, as well as heal from stress, trauma, abuse and neglect. Working with nature, LaMar and Laney provide a unique form of counseling to overcome life’s challenges. For more information, call 231-924-2401 or check www.livingfarm.org.
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BedTimes | January 2010 |
NewsMakers Classic Sleep hires sales VP C
lassic Sleep Products, which has headquarters in Jessup, Md., has hired retail veteran Harry Goodman as vice president of Northeastern sales, a newly created position. Classic Sleep produces and markets the Dormia, Natural Expressions and Space Age brands. Previously, Goodman was vice president of sales for retailer Sleepy’s. Prior to that, he was area manager for Fabric Bonanza and a regional sales manager for Big & Tall Shops. Harry Goodman He reports to Justin Gannon, Classic Sleep vice president of sales, who also recently joined the company. Gannon previously led merchandising and marketing efforts for Mattress Discounters. “Harry brings a wealth of expertise and contacts in the Northeast and we are pleased to have him on our team,” Gannon said. “This is the first of several key initiatives we are implementing as we plan for future growth.” “There is no question that with Harry from Sleepy’s and Justin from Mattress Discounters, we are fielding some of the best players in the mattress retail business,” said Mike Zippelli, Classic Sleep president. “They were both key retail executives who can now deliver that same expertise to our clients and help them grow their businesses.”
Restonic licensee adds execs Alliance Sleep Products, a Restonic licensee based in Buffalo, N.Y., has hired two vice presidents of sales as part of a growth Davis Odom strategy that also includes the recent opening of a new, 60,000-square-foot manufacturing plant in Buffalo. “While these investments may appear bold in the present economy—and they are—a tough economy produces great opportunities for conservatively managed companies. We are taking full advantage of strategic opportunities for growth,” said Tom Comer, Alliance Sleep Products chief executive officer. Davis Odom was hired as vice president of sales for Restonic’s Southeastern region, a newly created position. Odom’s background includes stints as regional sales manager for Spring Air and key account representative and www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
regional trainer for Serta. He also owned and operated a furniture store construction business. “Davis will be Tom Hill an extraordinary asset to our team as we continue our growth path” said Laurie Tokarz, executive vice president of sales and marketing. Tom Hill was hired as vice president of sales for Restonic’s Northeastern region, also a new position. Hill has experience in both retail and wholesale mattress sales. He served in various sales, marketing and training posts during his seven years with Sealy. He also spent two years as marketing manager and bedding buyer for Levin Furniture. “We are confident that Tom’s track record of success in sales, combined with his experience in creating motivating sales training programs, will be key to our future growth,” Tokarz said.
Five Star Mattress puts Jim Nation at helm as president Thirty-year industry veteran Jim Nation has been named president of Five Star Mattress, a maker of value-priced bedding owned by Ares Management LLC and the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, which also own National Bedding Co., the largest producer of the Serta brand. Both Five Star and Serta have headquarters in Hoffman Estates, Ill. Nation replaces Donna Zett, who had been president since Five Star’s debut in January 2008. Zett also was chief innovation officer at Serta and now will concentrate her efforts in that area. Nation joined Serta in 2008 as president of sales development. Previously, he spent nearly two decades with the former Spring Air Co., 12 of them as president. Prior to that, he held posts at Sealy and Bassett Bedding. He has been active in the International Sleep Products Association and served as its chairman. “I’m excited about taking advantage of this opportunity. It’s perfect from a timing standpoint, with how the economy is going and consumer behavior is changing,” Nation said. “Five Star focuses on the $199 to $999 price point and the Better Homes & Gardens collection is our hook at the top, $799 to $1,499. We have the best of both worlds—the quality, purchasing power and distribution of a leading brand, with the ability to chart our own path.” Nation is building an experienced executive team to manage the company’s 45 independent sales representatives.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
Outlast bolsters operations in U.S. & Asia O
utlast Technologies, a supplier of phasechanging materials and applications based in BoulKaren Fischer der, Colo., has promoted and hired several people for the companyâ€™s operations in the United States and Asia. Karen Fischer has rejoined Outlast as North America sales manager, a new position for the company. She is a textile industry veteran who was director of sales and business development at Outlast from 1998-2002. Most recently, she was a senior account manager for Shore to Shore Inc. In her new position, Fischer is
80 | BedTimes | January 2010
responsible for growing Outlastâ€™s apparel segment in North America. Greg Russell also has been named to a new post, North America business development associate. Russell is a graduate of the University of Colorado. His responsibilities include acting as primary point of contact for clients and handling day-to-day account management. Sachiko Sasayama has been promoted to the newly created position of Asia
sales operations manager. She is based in Tokyo and is responsible for handling all sales, customer relations, Shizuko Okada product inquiries, orders and shipments in Asia. Prior to joining Outlast, Sasayama worked in international sales for companies in Japan and the United States. Shizuko Okada has been hired to fill an Asia sales operations position vacated by Sasayama. Also based in Tokyo, she is responsible for order issues, product certifications and shipments throughout Asia. Previously, Okada worked for a graphic design company.
Protect-A-Bed promotes Eisenberg
rotect-A-Bed, a Chicago-based supplier of mattress protection products, has promoted Alan Eisenberg to senior vice president of sales, a new position for the company. Eisenberg is responsible for sales and marketing initiatives, oversees major retail accounts and directs the company’s pest control Alan Eisenberg management sales group. “Protect-A-Bed has seen significant growth in recent years, in part because of the outstanding leadership Alan has show within the home textile, furniture and pest control industries,” said James Bell, Protect-A-Bed chief executive officer. “He is an essential part of our company’s team.” Eisenberg has 20 years of experience in the mattress industry. Before joining Protect-A-Bed in 2007, he was vice president of national accounts for Serta. Prior to that, he was a senior key account manager at Sealy. Eisenberg earned a bachelor’s degree in economics from Brooklyn College/City University of New York. He reports to Bell.
American Bedding founder dies at 75
Santino “Tino” Antinori, founder of mattress manufacturer American Bedding in Tampa, Fla., died Oct. 28 following a battle with cancer. He was 75. Antinori’s first career was as a firefighter. He spent 22 years with the Tampa fire department, retiring as district fire chief. He then opened Antinori Bedding, which he owned and operated with the assistance of his wife, Pat, and three sons, Tony, Steve and Michael. He later changed the company’s name to American Bedding and became a Spring Air licensee. He also was the founder of Orthomatic adjustable beds, which is now owned by Leggett & Platt. Survivors include his wife, two sons, a daughter-in-law and four grandchildren. His son Michael preceded him in death.
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95% of mattress customers polled (ages 21-34) said the Purista™ freshnessenhancing treatment was a feature they desired in their mattress. Contact us today to learn more about how the Purista™ brand can become a part of your polyurethane and latex foams solution.
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BedTimes | January 2010 |
ISPAAdvocacy ISPA briefs CPSC on issues
taff of the International Sleep Products Association recently met with Inez Tenenbaum, the new chairwoman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, and new CPSC Commissioner Bob Adler. During these separate meetings, ISPA staff provided background on the mattress industry and discussed numerous matters related to mattress safety. ISPA staff advocated for changes to simplify the cigaretteignition standard16 CFR Part 1632 and the need to address how to conduct 1632 tests given that the nonfiltered cigarettes called for in the standard are no longer available. ISPA staff also discussed several issues regarding implementation of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, including the importance of limiting new compliance costs for manufacturers. In addition, they discussed the need for greater clarity from the commission on issues related to certain children’s mattresses, including phthalates testing and certification, tracking labels, product registration cards and general conformity certificates.
Home buyer credit extended until April A law providing an $8,000 tax credit for first-time home buyers has been extended until April. The eligibility income limits also have been increased, allowing more people to qualify for the credit. In addition, existing homeowners who have lived in their residence for at least five years now may qualify for a $6,500 tax credit when they purchase a new home. The credit may indirectly assist the mattress industry by prompting more people to buy mattresses when they move. Separately, the International Sleep Products Association and the American Home Furnishings and Building Products Coalition continue to push for passage of the Home Improvements Revitalize the Economy Act, which would provide consumers and retailers with tax credits and deductions for purchasing new mattresses and other home furnishings. ISPA encourages its members to pressure Congress to pass the bill. To contact your representatives, check www.sleepproducts.org/legislativeactioncenter.
Pacific Spring Inc. An American company importing springs from Cambodia 6.5” H 312 Bonnel units 7” H 336 Bonnel units 8” H pocket units
Pacific Spring Inc. Victor Nguyen, VP of Marketing & Sales 6418 E. Washington Blvd. Commerce Ca. 90040 Tel: (626) 272-8882 • Fax: (626) 226-4166 Email: email@example.com
82 | BedTimes | January 2010
ISPA Serves Your Special Needs at the Busy Las Vegas Market Visit the ISPA Oasis Lounge! New ISPA Concierge Member Service!
The International Sleep Products Association extends an invitation to members to stop by space B910 to relax in the privacy of our special lounge. Whether you are exhibiting or attending, take a moment to get away from market hustle and bustle. Whatever your need, we’ll do our best to assist!
Drop off your business card for a chance to win an iPod touch!
501 Wythe Street Alexandria, VA 22314 Phone 703-683-8371 Fax 703-683-4503 www.sleepproducts.org
Enjoy a light refreshment
Put a quick shine on your shoes
Relax with a colleague in a casual, inviting atmosphere
Get ‘emergency’ supplies (band aids, Advil, sewing kit)
Unwind and check your email
Grab some candy or mints
Grab a cup of coffee
Read the paper
Check the latest sports scores
Take a few minutes off your feet to relax
Classifieds For Sale TAPE-EDGE MACHINES, MULTINEEDLE AND SINGLENEEDLE QUILTERS, long-arm label machines, sergers, etc. Contact Victor LeBron, American Plant and Equipment. Phone 864-574-0404; Fax 864-576-7204; Cell 864-590-1700; Email firstname.lastname@example.org; Web www.americanplantandequipment.com. REBUILT AND RECONDITIONED MULTINEEDLE QUILTING MACHINES. Specializing in PATHE precision parts and service. Technical consultants. SEDCO. Phone 201-567-7141; Fax 201-567-5515. TAPE-EDGE MACHINES, QUILTERS & MISCELLANEOUS SEWING MACHINES. Contact Frank Carlino, U.S. Mattress Machinery. Phone 815-795-6942; Fax 815-795-2178; Email email@example.com. EMCO Compustitch Quilter with Quilt Rack and Catwalk and Gribetz cutter; National serger and Table 1; Union Special serger and Table 2; Porter 1000 serger and table; Porter tape-edge. Many other miscellaneous items available. Call Troy at 815-343-9984 for more details.
For Sale We manufacture wooden box-spring flat frames and foundations custom-sized to your specifications. Foundation kit options available. Wood components for flat frames, foundations, pallets or packaging, including grooved stock cut to the size you need. Assembly available for most items. Foundations can be covered and bagged to be ready to sell. Ask about your specific needs. Email inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org. AUTOMATIC BORDER MACHINE. 2003 Atlanta Attachment 33200A1Y90. Standard and continental; sew miters and join. Like new. $53,000. Reduced now to $49,000. Contact Tom Metcalfe in Bluefield, Va. Phone 276-326-1898.
Place your classified ad today!
Reach mattress industry professionals around the world with your advertising message through the BedTimes Classifieds. Rates: $3 per word for the first 100 words and $2.50 thereafter; minimum charge of $75. “Blind” box number: $50 per insertion. Ad copy and payment must be received by the first of the month preceding publication. Send ads and payment to BedTimes Classifieds, 501 Wythe St., Alexandria, VA 22314-1917. Contact Debbie Robbins, advertising production manager. Phone 336-342-4217; Fax 336-342-4116; Email email@example.com.
Baron Styles, Inc
Custom Quilting & Sewing We do it all . . . Call Today for a Quote!! ◆ All Natural - Mattress Kits - 1633 Certified ◆ All Natural - Mattress Pads ◆ Mattress Quilting - Tack & Jump Available ◆ Sheet Sets - Custom Sizes & Shapes ◆ Magnetic Mattress Pads and Accessories ◆ International Shipping Available
Giving Our Customers More
Baron Styles, Inc 621 Gateway Drive • Milton, WI 53563 Phone (608) 868-3430 • Fax (608) 868-3481
visit our website www.baronstyles.com 84 | BedTimes | January 2010
Jan. 24-27 Interiors Birmingham National Exhibition Centre Birmingham, England Phone 44-121-780-4141 Fax 44-121-767-3825 www.interiorsbirmingham.com
Feb. 1-5 Las Vegas Market World Market Center Las Vegas, U.S. Phone 888-416-8600 Fax 702-599-9622 www.lasvegasmarket.com Feb. 2-6 Istanbul Furniture Fair CNR EXPO Istanbul Istanbul, Turkey Phone 90-212-465-74-75 Fax 90-212-465-74-76 www.itf-imob.com Feb. 3-5 Australian International Furniture Fair Sydney Exhibition Centre Sydney, Australia Phone 613-9654-7773 Fax 613-9654-5596 www.aiff.net.au
March 19-22 ZOW Shenzhen Shenzhen Convention & Exhibition Center Shenzhen, China Phone 60-3-2094-2880 Fax 60-3-2094-2881 www.zow-shenzhen.cn
Experience the softer side of flame-resistant performance.
April 17-22 High Point Market International Home Furnishings Center & other locations High Point, N.C., U.S. Phone 336-869-1000 www.highpointmarket.org
Rely on Alessandra Yarns to develop FR bedding products that stand out in your market – and stand up to heat and flame. • Customized yarn blends from 10/1 cc to 26/1 cc. • For knit and woven FR fabrics used in mattress sleeves, barriers and decorative covers.
March 27-30 Interzum Guangzhou/China International Furniture Fair China Import & Export Fair Pazhou Complex Guangzhou, China Phone 86-20-8755-2468 Fax 86-20-8755-2970 www.interzum-guangzhou.com www.ciff-gz.com
➤ March 3-6 ISPA EXPO 2010 Charlotte Convention Center Charlotte, N.C., U.S. Phone 703-683-8371 Fax 703-683-4503 www.sleepproducts.org March 9-12 International Furniture Fair Singapore/ ASEAN Furniture Show Singapore Expo Singapore Phone 65-6569-6988 Fax 65-6569-9939 www.iffs.com.sg ‘
Choose bedding products with Alessandra Yarns.
TNC Global, Inc. 336.668.7060 firstname.lastname@example.org
ISPA EXPO 2010 The industry’s biggest show devoted exclusively to mattress industry machinery, components, supplies and services will be March 3-6 in Charlotte, N.C.
www.alessandrayarns.com Alessandra® is a registered trademark of Sumlin Holdings, Inc.
BedTimes | January 2010 |
AdvertisersIndex A. Lava & Son Co. Steve Appelbaum 800-777-5282 (800-777-LAVA) www.alavason.com
Alessandra Yarn Jorman Fields 336-668-7060 www.alessandrayarns.com
Arch Chemicals Damali Noel-Lockett 770-805-3294 www.purista.biz
Atlanta Attachment C2-1, 37 Co. Inc. Hank Little 770-963-7369 www.atlatt.com
Ideal Quilting Inc. Nick Rossini 416-748-8402 www.idealquilting.com
Diamond Needle Corp. 82 Abe Silberstein 800-221-5818 www.diamondneedle.com
John Marshall & Co. Ltd. Peter Crone 64-3-341-2004 www.joma.co.nz
Eclipse International/ Eastman House Stuart Carlitz 215-715-9677 Jerry Gershaw 561-542-4490 www.eclipsemattress.com www.eastmanhousemattress.com
Jomel Industries Inc. Phil Iuliano 973-282-0300 www.jomel.net
Kenn Spinrad Inc. Randy Weinstock 800-373-0944 www.spinrad.net Komar Alliance Herman Tannenbaum 215-441-9300 www.komaralliance.com
Latex Systems Kitti Charoenpornpanichkul 66-2-326-0886, Ext. 204 www.latexsystem.com
Lava USA Inc. Ann Weaver 864-998-4892 www.lavatextiles.com
Lenzing Fibers Inc. Nina Nadash 212-944-7898 www.lenzing.com
Maxime Knitting Lorne Romoff 514-336-0445, Ext. 27 514-265-8782 www.maximeknitting.com
Middleburg Yarn Processing Co. Inc. Howard Reese 570-374-1284, Ext. 210
Natura World Michael Pino 908-410-1257 www.naturaworld.com
New England Needles Inc. Thomas Lees 800-243-3158 www.newenglandneedles.com
OHM Systems Inc. Catherine Anbil 513-771-0008 www.ohmworld.com
Deslee Textiles NV Bart Dehaerne 864-472-2180, Ext. 108 www.desleeclama.com
Atlantic Thread Vincent Diaz 800-287-4624 www.atlanticthread.com
Edgewater Machine Co. Inc. Roy Schlegel 718-539-8200 www.edgewatermachine.com
Baron Styles Dave Williams 262-473-7331 www.baronstyles.com
Enriquez Materials & Quilting Inc. Silvia Enriquez 323-725-4955 www.enriquezquilting.com
Albrecht Baumer GmbH & Co. KG Phillipp Schuster 49-2734-289-211 Terry Borchard (U.S.) 973-263-1569 www.baumerofamerica.com
Flexible Foam Products Inc. Michael Crowell 419-647-4191 www.flexiblefoam.com FXI Foamex Innovations Fred Natrin 610-744-2148 www.foamex.com
Bloomingburg Spring & Wire Form Vickie Schwarm 740-437-7614 www.bloomingburgspring.com
Global Systems Group Russ Bowman 954-846-0300 www.gsgcompanies.com
BLR Martin Leroux 819-877-2092 www.blrlumber.com
Harvard Margaret Wang 323-728-8188 Hengchang Machinery Factory Belinda Lau 769-83307931 www.hcjixie.com
Herculite Products Leslie Haddad 717-764-1192 www.herculite.com
Boyteks Tekstil AS M. Nebi Dogan 90-533-685-6041 www.boyteks.com
Chicago Tape & Label Kristy Enger 262-473-0323 www.ctlabels.com
CT Nassau John Bauman 800-922-2193 www.ctnassau.com
86 | BedTimes | January 2010
Hickory Springs Mfg. Co. Rick Anthony 828-328-2201 www.hickorysprings.com
Pacific Spring Inc. Victor Nguyen 626-272-8882
Plastic Monofil Joe St. Martin 802-893-1543 www.plasticmonofil.com
Propex Kevin Ray 229-686-1417 www.propexus.com
P.T. RubberFoam Indonesia Andreas Janssen 62-21-53662190 www.rubberfoam.co.id
Quilting Inc. Mark Gibney 800-358-0153 www.quiltinginc.com
Richard Pieris Januka Jayanaga 94-114622268 www.arpico.com
Therapedic International Gerry Borreggine 800-314-4433 www.therapedic.com
SABA North America LLC Jim Turner 810-824-4964 www.saba-adhesives.com
Tietex International Ltd. Wade Wallace 800-843-8390 www.tietex.com
Simalfa Darren Gilmore 973-423-9266 www.simalfa.com
Vertex Fasteners Inc. Tom Fowler 847-329-8530 www.vertexfasteners.com
Springs Creative Products Group George Booth 803-324-6505 www.springscreative.com
Vintex Customer Service 800-846-8399 www.vintex.com
Sweet Dreams (Nelson) Ltd. Riaz Ahmed 44-1282-830033 www.sweetdreamsuk.com
Wright of Thomasville Area Account Executive 800-678-9019 www.wrightlabels.com
BedTimes | January 2010 |
TheLastWord Beware of those irate customers
id you know that United Airlines breaks guitars? Millions of people do, thanks to Dave Carroll. According to Carroll, he and his band, Sons of Maxwell, were flying from Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Omaha, Neb., for a gig in March 2008. While waiting to take off, they saw baggage handlers tossing their luggage. Carroll told flight attendants about the problem but damage already had been done— to the tune of $3,500 worth to his Taylor guitar. Carroll says when he contacted the airline, he was sent from person to person, never getting the restitution he sought. So Carroll did what angry customers can so easily do in this age of social media: He wrote an aptly titled song, “United Breaks Guitars,” and uploaded it to YouTube in July. Ouch! In the first 10 days, it racked up 3 million views and by early December had more than 6.2 million. The band then recorded a follow-up, “United Breaks Guitars: Song 2.” You might want to have a viewing party with everyone in your company who deals directly with customers. You can see both videos at www.youtube.com.
88 | BedTimes | January 2010
Banning cell phones doesn’t slow work Are you worried that your staff is putting themselves and their vehicles at risk by using cell phones when they’re behind the wheel? Are you equally worried that banning cell phones while driving will limit their productivity? A new survey from the National Safety Council shows that a whopping 99% of companies have seen no change in productivity after instituting a policy restricting the use of cell phones and other electronic devices. A few say their staff is getting even more work done. The survey found that most policies are enforced through an honor system but 43% of companies conduct parking lot checks, 40% review driver records and traffic citations, and almost 10% conduct in-vehicle monitoring. When employees are caught violating the policy, companies’ disciplinary actions range from formal write-ups and verbal warnings to temporary job suspension and termination. To assist companies in implementing effective cell phone policies, the National Safety Council has created a kit, including sample policies and roll-out communication materials, that can be downloaded for free at www.nsc.org.
Sounds in sleep help memory W
hen you hear sounds in your sleep, it may help you remember, according to a new study from Northwestern University in Evansville, Ill., published in the journal Science. Researchers played 25 sounds—from a whistling tea kettle to a meowing cat— while study participants slept. Participants weren’t aware they were hearing such sounds but when they woke, tests showed their spatial memories had changed. The participants were more accurate in dragging an object to the correct location on a computer screen for 25 images whose corresponding sounds were presented during sleep than for another 25 matched objects. “The research strongly suggests that we don’t shut down our minds during deep sleep,” says John Rudoy, lead author of the study and a neuroscience doctoral candidate at Northwestern. “Rather, this is an important time for consolidating memories.” The research shows that sounds can penetrate deep sleep and can push people’s consolidation of memories in one direction over another. “While asleep, people might process anything that happened during the day—what they ate for breakfast, television shows they watched, anything,” says Ken Paller, senior author of the study and professor of psychology at Northwestern’s Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences. “But we decided which memories our volunteers would activate, guiding them to rehearse some of the locations they had learned an hour earlier.” www.sleepproducts.org/bedtimes
GLOBAL SYSTEMS GROUP ISPA EXPO 2010
| March 3 - 6
It’s often said, “The race is won in the pits.” That’s why your crew at Global Systems Group can put you ahead of the competition. We have all the tools and experience you need to win. See the best values in machinery at the forefront of bedding industry technology.
GSG has a long history of introducing new technology at this show. See what it will be in 2010!
Take a lap on www.PuttingYouInFront.com to learn more about the value of teaming up with GSG at ISPA EXPO 2010.
The business journal for the sleep products industry