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Sofa imports climbed on the back of higher arrivals from China. Image; Maersk.
Chinese sofa imports were up by almost half in April to drive a 27 percent overall year-on-year leap in the total value of upholstered furniture arriving on British shores for the month.

Former Halo executive David Watts has joined sofa maker Alexander & James as global business director with a brief to drive international sales at the upholstery brand.

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Supplying Harveys is the primary focus of the sofa supply division, based here in South Wales. Image: Google.
Steinhoff UK Upholstery has a new name, brand and logo as the circa £95 million turnover supplier, whose main focus is and continues to be supplying Harveys, explores ways it can maximise its capacity.

Revenue fell in high single digits in the first quarter at Natuzzi as weaker sales in the wholesale channel were countered by rising output from the Italian sofa giant's direct retail business.

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Man Wah acquired the Vietnamese manufacturer behind the Sofa Square brand last year.
Core recliner sales across Europe climbed for upholstery giant Man Wah Holdings in 2018–19, a year that saw the Far East conglomerate integrate acquisitions, tackle tariff threats and confront staffing issues.

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Emma Rackley has joined JB Global, which has in the past operated the standalone SofaStore brand alongside its core Oak Furnitureland fascia.
JB Global, the company behind the Oak Furnitureland chain, has bolstered its expanding product development team with the appointment of Emma Rackley, formerly of Shop Direct, Furniture Village and Leekes.

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TCM Corp acquired a majority stake in the company behind Alexander & James in 2016.
Upholstery profits almost doubled for the Thai owner of the Alstons, Ashley Manor and Alexander & James businesses in the first quarter of 2019 despite it booking lower combined sales.

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Qumei acquired Ekornes, owner of the Stressless brand, last August.
The acquisition of Stressless brand owner Ekornes by Qumei Home Furnishings Group Co. has more than doubled the size of the China-based furniture maker, new figures reveal.

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Imports ended a run going back to September.
Weaker March upholstery imports pared back earlier gains but the value of product arriving into Britain, particularly from China and Poland, remained ahead for the quarter overall.

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Sales climbed for Sofa Workshop.
Upholstery retailer Sofa Workshop posted mid single-digit growth last year as it added new space following the closure of Multiyork, its upper midmarket rival. Higher costs impacted its bottom line.

The finances of the U.K. arm of recliner and upholstery source La-Z-Boy have been bolstered thanks to a seven-figure rights issue.

The directors of a privately-owned British furniture manufacturer say they are convinced a police investigation into alleged modern day slavery offences will absolve the company of any wrongdoing.

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Sofa chain ScS has strengthened its board.
National sofa specialist ScS Group has appointed the former chief executive of home shopping group N Brown and discount store chain Original Factory Shop to its board as a non-executive director.

Upholstery maker and retailer Sofa.com has opened at Oxford Street, London, the first of a series of new concessions to open in the stores of House of Fraser.

Doug Collier, the president of La-Z-Boy's international business and the executive that led the strategy to create a wholly-owned UK arm, is to retire.

Chinese upholstery conglomerate Kuka — which last year acquired German furniture company Rolf Benz and a controlling stake in a joint venture with Italy's Natuzzi — built out its top and bottom lines in the first quarter of 2019.

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Cintique moved to Celebrity Motion Furniture as part of restructuring of JDP group operations.
The chairman and owner of the JDP Furniture Group says 2017–18 was a painful year in a very tough market but insists he is looking ahead with confidence and has vowed to continue investing in its upholstery brands.

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Buoyant Upholstery faced headwinds last year.
Lancashire sofa maker Buoyant Upholstery has found cost savings, a major new customer and introduced a more inspirational product range as it bids to bounce back from trading headwinds in 2017–18.

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More Sofa.com concessions in House of Fraser are planned.
Upholstery vertical Sofa.com will open another three concessions in addition to the already-reported six planned new units inside House of Fraser (HoF) department stores.

Kuka, the Far East upholstery giant, will waste no time rolling out Natuzzi stores in the Greater China region following the signing of its joint venture agreement with the Italian company last year.

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Just4Sofas is adding to the introduction of its first standalone store, in Fareham, last autumn.
Just4Sofas, a two-store and online retailer majoring in electric recliners and a stockist of brands such as La-Z-Boy, is opening a third retail showroom.

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Upholstery imports from China fell nearly double-digit last year, but are on the rise again in the early months of 2019.
Last year will go down as a bad one for Sino-UK upholstery trade, with stocks of China-made products arriving in Britain down nearly double-digit year-on-year. That trend looks set to be reversed in 2019.

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La-Z-Boy UK recorded seven-figure profits in 2017–18.
Upholstery source La-Z-Boy cleared seven percent net at its fledgling wholly-owned UK subsidiary as it posted high sales in the first figures since it bought back the rights to the brand.

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Sales fell in mid single digits for Natuzzi through 2018.
Italian upholstery giant Natuzzi swung back into the black last year after booking a €75.4 million gain on the summer 2018 joint venture with Chinese furniture giant Kuka.

Underlying revenue climbed at Furnico, the Lancashire sofa manufacturer, in its first full year since it sold the UK and Ireland licensing rights to the La-Z-Boy brand.

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The South Coast factory that was home to the liquidated business.
The liquidator of one of the former furniture companies run by Wesley Barrell owner Ayiaz Ahmed says two separate tracing companies have been paid to try and find a residential address for him, without success.

Sofas & Stuff, the upholstery retailer founded by Sofa Workshop creator Andrew Cussins, is opening a new store in the Midlands, its 13th nationwide.

Matt O'Flynn, former chairman at the association of British Furniture Manufacturers (BFM) and the Long Eaton Guild of Furniture of Manufacturers, has died. He was 44 years old.

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Parker Knoll's Castlewood Business Park factory.
Three of Britain's largest sofa manufacturers — Duresta, G Plan and Parker Knoll — faced up to rising costs, customer insolvency, adverse weather and challenging trading conditions during 2017–18.

The Lounge Co, the multichannel consumer brand launched by the Sofa Brands International group back in 2016, doubled revenue in its first full year of trading.

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Wesley Barrell has been beset by problems for some time.
Heritage furniture brand Wesley Barrell faces a new existential threat after the newco that bought the business in a prepack administration in February told employees it too was closing.

Natuzzi, the Italian upholstery manufacturer and retailer, has delayed the release of fourth quarter and full year 2018 results, which were originally due last Friday (Mar. 29).

Dienne Salotti, a southern Italian sofa maker established at the turn of the century, is to enter the UK for the first time.

Whitemeadow, the Sutton-in-Ashfield upholstered furniture maker, is reopening its independent showroom from April 29–May 1 to coincide with spring Long Point.

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The new showroom adds to units at Fulham, Harrogate and Bristol (pictured).
Arlo & Jacob will this Easter open a fourth retail showroom as it continues to build out its physical store presence in selected affluent locations.

Upholstery market leader DFS will this weekend open its westernmost store yet as it expands its presence in Ireland.

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ScS sales fell including the now-closed House of Fraser concessions, but advanced without.
Interim numbers from ScS Group underscore how serious the retailer was about acquiring Sofa.com, with Britain's number two upholstery chain having spent a sizeable six-figure sum on the process.

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Italian sofa imports were up by 10% in January.
Double-digit gains on upholstery shipped and trucked in from China and Italy boosted sofa imports in January, countering weaker figures from Poland.

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Whitemeadow quality manager Andy Pinder (right) with Phil Reynolds, chief operating officer of The Furniture Industry Research Association.
Whitemeadow, one of Britain's largest upholstered furniture manufacturers, has become the latest industry company to be awarded membership of The Furniture Industry Research Association's Compliance Scheme.

After market leader DFS updated last week, tomorrow attention turns to ScS, Britain's second largest upholstery retailer, which is due to file half-year numbers to January 26, 2019.

Upholstery and flooring retailer ScS has admitted misleading customers at its Aberdeen store back in the autumn of 2017 after a nationwide Trading Standards investigation.

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Profits climbed at DFS in the 22 weeks to December 30, 2018.
Half-year profits advanced at DFS as the sofa market leader made the most of a buildup in sales demand after customers had deferred purchases during the exceptionally hot summer last year.

Upholstery market-leader DFS says it hopes to save £7 million a year in rent as it prepares to enter negotiations with landlords over expiring leases. It also indicated it had revised its Sofology store target.

Privately-owned sofa and chair maker Sherborne Upholstery built cash and saw underlying profits rise in a year where revenue was broadly flat.

The switch of financial year-end by Britain's largest upholstery retailer DFS went largely unreported, with even the odd supplier claiming to have little knowledge.

European sales boost for one-time owner of 26-store British upholstery retail chain Easy Living Furniture.

Italian sofa maker Natuzzi will expand its collaboration with Studio Marcel Wanders with the launch of a third new collection with the Dutch design icon inside 12 months.

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TCM Corp acquired a majority position in Alstons in 2015.
TCM Corp, the Far East majority owner of UK sofa makers Ashley Manor and Alstons, posted bigger profits at its British upholstery unit after revenue growth through 2018.

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The Hastings Sofa Company has launched from a slimmed down part of the large Menzies Road factory.
The fortunes of the Sussex upholstery factory that was the longtime home to Collins and Hayes before the brand was sold to Sofa Brands International are back on an upward curve following the launch of The Hastings Sofa Company.

Upholstery vertical Sofa.com is planning to open its first physical retail space in Ireland, lending weight to theories its new owner bought the business to bolster its concession presence.

A major Far East upholstered chair maker is planning its first foray into European production with a purpose-built plant in Romania.

The joint administrators of Wesley Barrell have outlined details of their past relationship with the owner of the prepacked upholstery maker and retailer, saying between them they worked on two previous insolvencies he was involved with.

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The owner of Wesley Barrell was also the largest creditor of the business.
The restructure of premium sofa maker and retailer Wesley Barrell involved a £20,000 upfront payment with the rest payable over time. Creditors face a shortfall of about £2.5 million.

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Wesley Barrell trades from showrooms across the UK
High-end sofa maker and retailer Wesley Barrell has completed its widely-anticipated restructure after the operating company was placed into the hands of administrators earlier this month.

Working capital increased for West Yorkshire upholstery fabrics supplier J Brown Fabrics in 2017–18 as it ended the period with more cash and inventory than the previous year.

Appointment completes senior management team, says Natuzzi.

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The sun set on the Fabb Sofas business last June.
PwC, the big-four consultancy firm overseeing the winding down of the now-defunct upholstery chain Fabb Sofas, says its fees might be higher than first anticipated.

Creditors of the heritage rise and recline chair maker AJ Way, which filed for insolvency last autumn, face a potential seven-figure shortfall according to a report by administrators.

Any lingering doubts over Sports Direct International's involvement with Sofa.com have been put to bed with details emerging of a credit line agreed between the two parties.

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Italian sofa imports were up more than a fifth in December.
Upholstery imports into Britain advanced in December as double-digit growth in the value of goods trucked in from Italy and Poland countered the impact of a fall in Chinese-made goods arriving at British ports.

Aberdare upholstery producer Ashwood Designs has more than trebled its annual revenue since 2013 with the company posting a fifth straight rise in sales, just-filed accounts show.

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Wesley Barrell manufactures and retails premium upholstery
The owner of upmarket upholstery maker and retailer Wesley Barrell says he is not afraid to do "what needs to be done" in response to the economic climate and to ensure the business' survival.

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Sofa.com owner LGT European Capital has been looking for a buyer for the upholstery vertical.
Sports Direct International, parent to House of Fraser and a growing roster of retail brands, was left in prime position to acquire Sofa.com after rival bidder ScS Group exited the process.

Clicks-to-bricks upholstery manufacturer and retailer Sofa.com will not become part of the ScS Group, the UK's second largest upholstery retailer said today.

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Like-for-like order intake climbed in past six months
ScS said same-store orders at its core brand advanced in the past six months with the business primed to take advantage of opportunities as they arise.

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LGT is seeking a new owner for Sofa.com
ScS says it is in talks to acquire the business and assets of Sofa.com, the clicks-to-bricks upholstery vertical. It is reportedly competing with Mike Ashley's Sports Direct International.

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Wesley Barrell now trades from ten showrooms
Wesley Barrell, the high-end upholstery maker and retailer headquartered at Witney in Oxfordshire, has further downsized its retail showroom network.

High-end upholstery business Kingcome Sofas posted double-digit growth in first half sales after it delivered its strong order book going into the period.

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Maggie Throup MP, says Long Eaton sofa manufacturers that may be displaced by High Speed 2 (HS2) need to be financially supported.
Upholstery companies in Long Eaton that face being railroaded out of their factories by High Speed 2 (HS2) routing need assurances over their future and must be allowed to relocate within the strategically-important NG10 postcode area.

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Hastings based B&S Upholstery supplied two well-known retailers
The state is the biggest creditor of B&S Upholstery, the South Coast sofa maker that traded as Billy & Slouch and additionally supplied household names with upholstery on a white-label basis.

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Lisa Broad joined Ashley Manor earlier this month
Lisa Broad, in her second week at Ashley Manor after leaving national furniture retailer Harveys, says the switch to manufacturing will enable her to pursue her passion for upholstery.

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Alexander & James' NEC stand won plaudits
Upholstery business Alexander & James is to open a showroom in Bangkok, Thailand, as the British brand boosts its international presence in the Far East.

Department store chain House of Fraser has walked back a decision to close four shopping centre stores after cutting a deal with Intu, the retail property company.

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Phil Reynolds, director at the Furniture Industry Research Association, is pictured on the right of each picture with ACL 2002's Danielle Watts and Mobus' Ian Bostock.
Sofa maker ACL 2002 and fabrics supplier Mobus have achieved Certified Company status under the Furniture Industry Research Association Compliance Scheme for the Fire Performance of Upholstered Furniture.

Upholstery market leader DFS has extended the breadth of its Joules-branded upholstery series, as well as launching a new product into the collection.

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Bazaar Group's Northumberland base and the new Wave sofa from its just-launched Ayla brand
"We're probably the biggest furniture manufacturer you've never heard of," says Mark Dolder, md of a North East seating company launching into the retail market with the introduction of the Ayla brand this week.

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B&S Upholstery's Hastings factory
Hastings sofa maker B&S Upholstery is to be liquidated a little over a year after it emerged from the embers of what was once one of Britain's busiest upholstery factories.

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Sofology is introducing 30 new ranges this year
Upholstery chain Sofology has further reshaped its management team with one of the industry's best-known buyers returning to the business in a more senior role.

Beds and furniture group Airsprung has invested £250,000 acquiring new machinery for its Cavendish Upholstery and Swanglen business units, underscoring its commitment to the upholstery and headboard sectors.

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The Santeramo-in-Colle company celebrates 60 years in 2019
Italian upholstery giant Natuzzi will roll out more dedicated Natuzzi Editions stores in Britain by the spring as it follows the launch of the first two units here on Boxing Day.

ACL 2002, a West Midlands sofa maker supplying retailers including ScS, achieved record sales for the third consecutive year in 2017–18. Profits fell because of rising costs.

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Chinese sofa imports climbed along with Italy
Britain's retailers and wholesalers upped upholstery stocks ahead of the festive season with Chinese and Italian products behind the bulk of the uplift.

DFS chief financial officer Nicola Bancroft is to step down from full-time executive duties, sparking a recruitment process for her successor.

Heimtextil launch for performance fabrics maker hoping to woo upholstery companies across Europe.

Profits at West Midlands contract seating manufacturer Boss Design Group fell after expansion costs abroad offset the impact of higher sales.

Second year-end shortening for privately-owned multi-store upholstery manufacturer and retailer.

Plans to construct new offices on state-owned land after buying land-use rights.

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Wesley Barrell changed hands in 2014
The Birmingham showroom of premium upholstery maker and retailer Wesley Barrell has closed a little over a year after it opened, while others in its network are to shut and reopen in nearby units.

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In 2018, Chinese upholstery imports have been in decline. Until now
Retailers upped stocks of foreign-made upholstery at the beginning of the peak trading quarter with a first rise in sofa shipments from China in the entire year so far.

Furniture distributor La-Z-Boy UK will add occasional furniture and dining sets as it diversifies its product offer further at next month's January Furniture Show at the NEC in Birmingham.

New facility for Hong Kong listed Man Wah.

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Sofa.com's Edinburgh showroom
Upholstery vertical Sofa.com booked a consolidated net loss of £38.4 million in the period leading up its change of ownership this summer, largely the result of management writing down the carrying value of its assets.

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Natuzzi is adding new retail space while rationalising its concessions
Italian sofa maker Natuzzi has chosen Cardiff for its first Natuzzi Editions showroom in Europe. It will open alongside a number of new Natuzzi Italia branded stores across the UK within the next few weeks.

North West upholstery fabrics supplier Fryett's said it sees 'significant opportunities' for exports as overseas sales comparatives outperformed its much larger UK revenue base in 2017–18.

Malcolm Nix, the former Sleepeezee, Wood Bros and Michael Tyler Upholstery executive, has been appointed UK main agent for Tuscan sofa maker Gradi Living.

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UK sofa market becoming more concentrated
Britain's three largest supply groups increased their share of a declining upholstery market last year and were responsible for more than one in every six sofas sold in the UK by value.

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DFS has a new store at Westfield White City
DFS has opened a new store at Westfield White City in London, one of only a handful of stores based in shopping centres for the UK upholstery market leader.

Premium upholstery retailer Wesley Barrell has temporarily closed one of its showrooms while it resolves property maintenance concerns with the store landlord.

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ScS' 16-week comp has weakened compared with 12-week figure given last month
ScS, the UK's number two sofa retailer, will tell shareholders at its AGM later today that core written orders remain ahead of year-earlier trade but that growth has slowed in the past month.

A hoped-for rescue of adjustable furniture maker AJ Way & Co has fallen through leaving the High Wycombe business facing an end to more than 80 years of trading. It was placed into administration last Thursday.

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TCM Corp acquired Alexander & James owner DM Midlands in 2016, having bought Alstons the year before. Its Q3 figures include all its UK sofa businesses combined.
The Thai owner of sofa makers Alstons and Ashley Manor has reported lower third quarter sales for its combined UK sofa business unit but wider margins, leading to improved profits.

Far East upholstery giant Man Wah Holdings says its summer acquisition of one of Vietnam's largest furniture manufacturers shields the business from the impact of tariffs.

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Italian sofa imports have grown strongly since April
The turnaround in Italian sofa imports gathered pace in September with the value of goods from the country rising by a third, countering weak figures from elsewhere including China.

Follows agreement with rival department store chain.

The Branded Furniture Company — a collaboration between Britain's largest management-owned sofa maker and designers who have imagined furniture for the likes of Next and Argos — is bringing Orla Kiely furniture to market in January.

Italian sofa company Natuzzi has won an Innovation Award for new virtual reality technology that allows consumers to better-visualise how products will look in their homes.

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Sofa.com has opened concessions in House of Fraser stores
Upholstery retailer Sofa.com has opened concessions in a handful of House of Fraser stores as part of a plan to expand its retail footprint. Its arrival comes as ScS, which operates 27 HoF concessions, departs.

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The concessions will close early next year
ScS is to end its partnership with House of Fraser and close all 27 of the concessions it operates within the department store chain with CEO David Knight saying the tie-up is "no longer beneficial."

Revenue declined in line with the upholstery market for Kidderminster sofa maker Wyvern Furniture last year with higher input costs also negatively impacting earnings.

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Chateau d"Ax sells through hundreds of monobrand franchised stores worldwide
Chateau d'Ax, the storied Italian sofa brand with a global footprint, is planning to restructure through an insolvency process that gives it time to reorganise its liabilities in agreement with creditors.

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DFS said it expects suppliers to increase the near-shore supply of raw materials ahead of Brexit
British sofa makers are weighing whether to increase raw material inventories to avoid potential production delays when the UK leaves the European Union next March.

Longtime CEO to launch new business, but outside the upholstery sector.

A large drop-off in the value of sofas arriving from Poland was the main driver behind weak upholstery imports in August, new Government data reveals.

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Its Vietnamese plant will be more than double its existing size
Man Wah Holdings has begun constructing a huge extension at its newly-acquired Vietnamese upholstery subsidiary that will see recliner production snowball by the end of next year.

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Clarke & Clarke has diversified into furniture and other home categories
Entering the finished furniture sector boosted sales for Clarke & Clarke, best known for its furnishings fabrics and wallpapers, in the six months to end July.

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Experienced furniture agent Matthew Kutas is bringing the Releazz product line to the UK
Dutch motion chair supplier Releazz is launching into the British and Irish markets and has enlisted Matthew Kutas, well known across the trade, as head of sales.

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Grantham-based QFC will close later this week
Lincolnshire sofa manufacturer QFC, which was placed into administration through KPMG earlier this summer, is to cease trading this week (Friday, October 12).

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Steve Hampton retires as CEO December 31, 2018
How big can Belfield—parent to Tetrad, Westbridge and a burgeoning mattress division—become? "How long is a piece of string," says group CEO Steve Hampton, who will step down at the end of 2018.

Upholstery chain Sofology will this week open its 42nd store and its first in the South West of England as it continues its national expansion.

Steve Hampton will stand down as chief executive of Belfield, the £200 million turnover upholstery and mattress group, at the end of 2018. His replacement is group commercial director Gary Lasham.

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Accounts are now due by the end of the year
Wesley Barrell, the high-end Oxfordshire sofa maker which trades from its own-brand stores nationwide, has shortened its year-end for the second straight year.

Sales and profits fell at HSL last year as the national specialist furniture maker and retailer adjusted its marketing strategy and encountered market headwinds.

Natuzzi says its House of Fraser concessions were its poorest-performing UK customer touch-points last year as its standalone brand stores here delivered high growth.

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DFS plans to test the Sofology format inside core brand stores
DFS will install mezzanines in existing single-storey core-brand stores where it will trial the introduction of its Sofology format. It also plans new-build Sofology stores on land housing DFS units.

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Jason Tyldesley is leaving the business started by his family in the 1970s
Sofology CEO Jason Tyldesley is to leave the business less than a year after the sale of the upholstery chain to DFS. His replacement is former Pets at Home CEO Sally Hopson.

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Profits fell at DFS in 2017–18
Profits dropped by half at sofa market leader DFS in 2017–18 with the retailer blaming worsening trading conditions including "exceptionally hot weather" in the fourth quarter.

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The Nottinghamshire company has grown each year since 2012
Whitemeadow, the UK's largest management-owned sofa maker, maintained profits in 2017 as rising input costs were counter balanced by a fifth straight year of top line growth.

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New stores and higher flooring sales boosted ScS revenue
Profits climbed at ScS in 2017–18 as growth in the sofa and carpets chain's core business helped negate weaker trading at its 27-store House of Fraser concession operation.

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Westbridge has doubled turnover since 2012
Westbridge, Britain's biggest sofa maker, posted a sixth straight year of growth in 2017 and has now doubled revenue in the past five years. Rising costs proved a drag on profits.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has upheld two complaints against a Northern Ireland specialist chair maker.

Upholstery supplier La-Z-Boy UK has adopted a new packaging product that has enabled it to eliminate all plastic wrapping from goods arriving from the Far East.

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The BFC trade alliance is concerned regarding guidance over rise and recline chairs
Guidance suggesting motorised furniture can bypass UK flammability regulations to be legally sold here should be reconsidered, according to the British Furniture Confederation (BFC), which has carried out tests to show the dangers.

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Sales rose, profits fell in the UK for Ekornes
Bad debt and higher costs meant UK profits declined for upholstery supplier Ekornes last year despite top line growth including standout performances in the South East and Scotland.

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

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

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

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



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