Former Aspinal, Mulberry and LVMH director Lisa Montague has been appointed CEO at luxury furnishings group Walker Greenbank. The post had been vacant since John Sachs' departure last autumn.

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As we reported February 22, House of Fraser is heading to Ireland for the first time. It will also open five other new concessions inside the department store chain nationwide. Image: HoF.
Upholstery vertical Sofa.com will take the number of concessions inside House of Fraser stores to 14 with the addition of a further six spaces in the weeks ahead.

SCP, the modern furniture maker and retailer founded by Sheridan Coakley back in 1985, is expanding with the opening of a second London retail store.

Findel, the circa £500 million turnover home shopping business, could become the latest addition to Mike Ashley's retail empire after Sports Direct International said it was bidding for the Manchester based company.

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Uncertainty hit spending in February according to the BRC.
Britain's leading retail membership group has delivered a bearish assessment of February trade, claiming furniture sales suffered amid uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

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Hourstons was once part of the House of Fraser estate.
Hourstons, a Scottish department store with a furniture department selling upholstery, cabinet and beds, has ceased trading and been placed into liquidation.

Top line growth returns for North West decorative lighting supplier.

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Lee Longlands returned to profit in 2017–18.
Furniture retailer Lee Longlands generated cash and returned to profit in 2017–18 ahead of moves to reconfigure its store network with the closure of its physical Furniture Barn units.

Cafom, the French owner of the Habitat brand outside the UK, said the Gilets Jaunes movement has had a seven-figure impact on performance, but not enough to prevent its underlying business from growing.

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All the new Homesense stores will be co-located with sister chain TK Maxx.
Off-price furniture and homeware retailer Homesense will add a store a week for a month this spring as it takes its UK estate beyond 70 units.

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Steinhoff UK household goods sales fell double-digit though the decline was less severe on a like-for-like store basis.
Store closures contributed to a double-digit sales decline for the division housing Bensons for Beds and Harveys in the three months to December 31, its parent company said in a trading update.

The Original Factory Shop, the value department store business that agreed a CVA with creditors last autumn, has bolstered its management team with two senior C-Suite hires.

Furniture and general merchandise conglomerate Steinhoff International Holdings says the release of audited accounts for 2017 and 2018 will be delayed further.

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Historically, Howdens depots have been about 10,000sqft in size.
Howdens, the trade kitchens supplier, says there is scope for more than 150 new UK depots after it developed a new smaller format that will take the business into both rural areas and big cities.

Competing tableware makers Portmeirion and Churchill China have each upped their equity positions in a key local supplier to both businesses, giving them full control between them.

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Actona's Danish headquarters and (inset) one of its sofa ranges. It has upholstery production facilities in China and Ukraine which between them employ around 1,000 people.
Profits halved at the Actona Company after the European furniture supply giant's merger with sister company Interstil gave rise to a number of one-off integration expenses.

The chairman of Laura Ashley has rebuked Flacks Group for its "unsolicited and highly opportunistic" indicative offer, saying it is causing unnecessary volatility and is not welcome.

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Sales fell, but will almost certainly rise next week when its performance will compare with the 'Beast from the East' week.
John Lewis & Partners recorded a seventh straight sales decline for home merchandise last week, blaming "discounting and half-term offers at competitors."

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Steinhoff's UK HQ at Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.
The conglomerate that owns UK beds and furniture chains Bensons for Beds and Harveys has promoted experienced retail industry executive Mark Jackson to CEO of Steinhoff UK.

Flacks Group has confirmed its interest in Laura Ashley but says if it makes an offer it will be for no more than £20 million. Its comments come despite the owners of the business saying they do not wish to sell.

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UK sales believed to be in the hundreds of millions of pounds for Wayfair.
UK sales for home furnishings retailer Wayfair are estimated to have shot past £200 million in 2018 as the ecommerce conglomerate's heavy marketing investment delivered top-line payback.

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Laura Ashley is attracting interest from an investment group
Furniture-to-fashion retail chain Laura Ashley will be the subject of a takeover approach by a Miami based investment company with links to the UK, according to The Sunday Telegraph.

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Retail sales advanced for The Conran Shop.
Majority shareholder Sir Terence Conran has provided seven-figure debt funding to the Conran group, parent to furniture and design retailer The Conran Shop, for the second straight year.

More retailers than not are forecasting volume growth next month according to a new survey by major business group the Confederation of British Industry (CBI).

A proposed tax designed to level the playing field between store-based and online retailers could disproportionately impact retailers of upholstery, cabinet, carpets and mattresses.

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How the Loom Loft is planned to look.
Loom Loft, a new purpose-built furniture and interiors superstore in the Ribble Valley, is slated to launch this summer.

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Sales of furniture were down double-digit between July 1–December 31, 2018.
Furniture-to-fashion chain Laura Ashley attributed a double-digit slump in big-ticket upholstery, cabinet and bed sales for it sinking to a half-year loss in the 26 weeks to December 31, 2018.

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Upholstery sales were up more than a third, John Lewis said.
Upholstery sales were strong in an otherwise bleak week for John Lewis & Partners home category goods, with the department store mutual posting a sixth straight year-on-year fall.

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(Left–right) Longtime branch manager Gary King with Glasswells, Haverhill colleagues Linda Rogers, Janet Pead and Rachel Phillips.
Privately-owned home furnishings retailer Glasswells has paid tribute to Gary King, manager of its Haverhill store, with an award for his 40 years of service.

Interior furnishings group Walker Greenbank is to begin a cost saving exercise as it looks to mitigate the impact of weakening UK brand sales on the business.

Ashford County Council has paid upwards of £2 million to acquire a property currently housing a large superstore operated by HomePlus Furniture, a four-store independent retailer.

Pan-European ecommerce furniture retailer Home24 said revenue gains outstripped the markets in which it operates in 2018 with it continuing to move closer to profit.

Scottish based business posts seven-figure deficit in latest accounts.

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Shipments from Vietnam and China fell over the full year in 2018: Image: Maersk
Wood furniture imports into the UK declined 2.2 percent in December confirming a year-long trend for weaker trade with three of the four biggest source markets for British buyers.

Sales of home merchandise have fallen for the fifth straight week at John Lewis & Partners despite the department store retailer gaining from what it called the 'Marie Kondo effect.'

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Dunelm paid £8.4 million for WorldStores in a 2016 prepack deal
Dunelm Group grew sales and profits and slashed debt in the six months to end December, declaring the challenges that came with its takeover of WorldStores a thing of the past.

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Amazon has launched two new home brands pitched at aspirational UK consumers
Amazon, the global retail giant, has taken two big steps into the UK furniture mid-market with the launch of dedicated brands selling a co-ordinated programme of upholstery and cabinet furniture.

Direct-to-consumer fitted and standalone bedroom furniture manufacturer and retailer Starplan grew profits in 2017–18, aided by an uptick in sales and lower distribution costs.

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New facility gives Debenhams greater "liquidity headroom"
Department store retailer Debenhams has agreed access to another £40 million of revolving credit with existing lenders which it says will buy it time to organise a more permanent refinancing of its business.

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Dunelm is to sponsor This Morning from March
National furniture and homewares chain Dunelm is to sponsor ITV's This Morning, one of the flagship programmes in the portfolio of Britain's largest commercial broadcaster.



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