General merchandise retailer Next says its new Home stores are trading way ahead of target and significantly stronger than new floorspace devoted to apparel.

Fast growth in economies including China and Russia helped IKEA global sales reach €32bn in 2014–15.

bensonForBedsBensons for Beds gleaned market share as Steinhoff’s UK retail interests traded ahead in high single digits during the year to end June.

Major furniture independent Stokers group deleveraged as it built sales and profits ahead of its late May acquisition of Aylesbury furniture retailer Lucas.

Dunelm posted rising sales and profits in 2014–15 as it made the most of its existing and new stores and its burgeoning online business.

Weak electricals demand hit sales at Argos in the second quarter while ongoing store closures hampered sister retailer Homebase despite improving like-for-likes.

lauraAshleyRetailer Laura Ashley enjoyed a double-digit spike in like-for-like furniture sales in the six months to 1st August though total revenue was impacted by net store closures.

The world’s biggest bed company Tempur Sealy International has a new leader following the high-profile ousting of former CEO Mark Sarvary earlier this year.

A major Malaysian furniture delegation has joined a raft of new and returning exhibitors to sign to the January Furniture Show, scheduled for 24th–27th January 2016.

Year-on-year retail prices were lower for a 28th consecutive month but unchanged in August, according to the British Retail Consortium.

sofaComVinceGunnUpholstery retailer has named Vince Gunn as its new chief executive following the earlier appointment of a new CFO.

Like-for-like retail sales dropped in August as retailers relied on new space to make up the shortfall, according to the British Retail Consortium.

A fall in sales in the third quarter proved a setback for the owner of the Habitat furniture retail brand outside the United Kingdom.

loafHomeLoaf says the launch of its new London store will have a transformational effect as it looks to build on profitable growth in 2014–15.

The pace of the rollout of the Habitat brand has been accelerated with the chain to reach its 2015–16 store target several months ahead of schedule.

The privately owned group behind the out-of-town Trago Mills shopping centres enjoyed a leap in profits in 2014 despite relatively flat sales.

conranSelfridgesFurniture and design retailer The Conran Shop is preparing to open its third UK store with a new concession inside Selfridges London.

westElmThumbWest Elm senior buyer Angus Whyte and vice president Kerri Ackermann tell The Furnishing Report about its new gallery in John Lewis.

Premium sofa and chair manufacturer Spink & Edgar Upholstery and luxury fabrics supplier Swaffer have partnered for a new product line to be introduced this month.

bentallsKingstonDepartment store retailer Bentalls has appointed the former head furniture buyer at rival retailer John Lewis for a newly created director of buying role.

Ponsford commercial director David Carter has left to launch his own brand management, distribution and sourcing business.

ulsterInternalMajor flooring manufacturer Ulster Carpets has unfurled the first phase of its £30m investment programme as it celebrates another year of record profits.

nickRadfordSmallThe acquisition of the Morris, Zone and Relaxateeze brands meets a strategic need, says Nathan Group chairman Nicholas Radford. He tells the Furnishing Report why.

Taking full control of the G Plan brand represents a powerful opportunity for the upholstery group Sofa Brands International.

Whirlpool has waded into the battle to acquire British premium stoves and furnishings group Aga Rangemaster, threatening to capsize a bid from one of its rivals.

hatfieldsColchesterSales growth escalated at large independent furniture retailer Hatfields of Colchester in the year to end March.

morrisFactoryThe Morris Furniture Group has sold its G Plan Cabinets brand to Sofa Brands International and its Zone, Relaxateeze and Morris brands to the newly formed Nathan Group.

ikeaAberdeenMockupThe second of IKEA’s smaller format store pilots is planned for the North East of Scotland with the retailer hoping to open in time for the key Christmas trading period.

Modern furniture specialist BoConcept enjoyed a strong first quarter in the UK, where its largest franchisee has taken control of all London stores.

Multi-fascia beds retail group Beter Bed said it made market share gains across Europe in the first half despite net store closures across its circa 1,100 store estate.

JohnLewisCorporateDepartment store mutual John Lewis’ slow start to the year continued as revenue within its Home category trended downwards for a third successive week.

Furniture Village opens its 41st store this August Bank Holiday weekend as part of its plan to open 20 new sites over the next five years.

furnitureVillageFasciaNational retailer Furniture Village grew 2014–15 profits by 43 per cent as orders increased and margins returned to historically high levels.

US furniture retailer West Elm is to open concession-style spaces in John Lewis stores starting with the department store chain’s big Oxford Street revamp, which officially opens next week.

East of England beds retailer Mattressman is raising cash for a new children’s hospice, by donating a percentage of the proceeds of its in-house produced Nook mattress.

The next edition of the IMM furniture fair in Cologne looks set to sell out with under a fifth of stand space remaining, according to organiser Koelnmesse.

wedoWebHomeOnline beds retailer Wedo Beds has ceased trading and will be placed into liquidation later today.

The company behind the SleepShaper mattress brand has developed a grading system for its memory foam programme and says others in the industry should follow its lead.

AshcraftFurnitureGloucsFlatpack bedroom supplier Ashcraft Furniture was saved through a pre-pack administration last month, new statutory filings reveal.

Adjustable furniture vertical HSL delivered profitable growth as it continued to invest in store expansion in the year to end December.

East of England mattress and bed base manufacturer Mansion House posted strong sales, profits and cash growth in the year to end March.

carpetShowroomThe boss of wholesale giant Headlam says momentum is building in the UK flooring sector as it claimed first half market share gains.

retailParkFurniture retailers made double-digit sales gains for a fifth consecutive time in July, with sales now trending upwards in each of the past 14 months.

Tough comps and changeable weather were blamed as John Lewis’ sales in the second week of its new financial year continued in the same vein as the first.

stresslessAdHalf year UK and Ireland revenue declined for Stressless brand owner Ekornes as lower sales in the second quarter eliminated gains made in the first.

IKEA says it will become the first major retailer in the world to offer a fully LED lighting range as part of a global investment that could reach €100m.

Furniture and home department store retailer Glasswells has paid tribute to its operations director Robert Hawkins, who died last week following a short illness. He was 72 years old.

Furniture trade association FIRA is to lay on additional EU Timber Regulation training courses, saying many in the trade are still stumped by how it relates directly to them.

inflationThumbFurniture prices slipped back into negative year-on-year territory in July to clock up a sixth successive month where category inflation has been flat or sub-zero.

Furniture and home retailer Sterling has invested more than £500,000 at its new-look Mill Café at its flagship Tillicoultry showroom.

IKEA has confirmed its long-awaited store along the M4 corridor will open in a year’s time in the summer of 2016.

retailParkThe number of people shopping out-of-town retail parks grew at its fastest rate in over a year in July, according to the British Retail Consortium.

highgroveExhibDivan and mattress maker Highgrove Beds has invested heavily through a mix of new debt and self-generated cash flows after posting record sales and profits.

The Benelux based carpet industry’s grip on the UK flooring market is weakening with British buyers looking to the East.

Home merchandise sales declined as John Lewis failed to match year-earlier trade in the first week of its new financial year.

sleepeezeeBedRising short term costs meeting supply deadlines pushed the Simmons Bedding Group into deficit in the year to end December, despite sales being ahead of plan.

A new resource for manufacturers looks at how to incorporate ergononics, health and well-being considerations into the design of home furniture.

Rising demand from core export partners in Europe drove a 9.8 per cent increase in furniture exports from the UK in the second quarter of 2015.

vietnamImportsImports climbed strongly in the second quarter of 2015 as British retailers and wholesalers bought more Polish sofas and Vietnamese dining sets.

Final quarter demand picked up at sofa and carpets chain ScS, which has announced the planned departure of its longtime chief financial officer Ron Turnbull.

downtownExtFurniture and department store retail group Oldrids said big-ticket merchandise delivered in a year that saw it undertake a “painful but necessary” change of strategy.

Retail sales growth slowed in July despite furniture and home furnishings remaining strong sellers, according to the British Retail Consortium.

National beds specialist Dreams launched its ‘Replace Every 8’  campaign yesterday, its largest marketing initiative outside of Christmas.

dwellFurniture retailer Dwell is to open two new pilot stores in former warehouses of DFS, the brand’s owner.

Carpets and flooring group Victoria has agreed to buy Australian carpet manufacturer Quest in a deal worth more than £16m.

Falling market demand and rising costs at Memory Foam Warehouse were compounded by a cyber-attack earlier this year.

Robert Bashford, founder of Chelford Fabrics and former buying director at Debenhams, has died after a long illness. He was 79 years old.

camerichShowroomThree new showrooms this year is just the start for modern upholstery and furniture specialist Camerich. We look at how the retailer plans to take sales to £40m next year……

Forrest Furnishings launches its new continental recliner gallery this weekend, part of its plan to transition the best of its former Macdonald brand to its South Street showrooms.

Modern upholstery and furniture retailer Camerich will this weekend open its third showroom so far this year and its eighth in all.

Exhibition space has sold out for next month’s South West Furniture Show, with approaching 50 leading furniture brands to be represented.

RiazAhmedScholefieldMillSweet Dreams has invested in growing its workforce as strong demand helped sales reach an eight-year high in the 12 months to end March.

glasswellsBurySEdEast of England furniture and home department store giant Glasswells posted its highest sales since 2010 and its strongest profits since 2007 in the year to end February.

Last month’s Manchester Furniture Show featured more visitors and bigger orders, according to event organisers and exhibitors.

The British Contract Furnishing Association (BCFA) has appointed Jeremy Stein as its new managing director.

barkerStonehouseStocktonSales trended up in double-digits for a second successive year at Barker and Stonehouse in the period leading up to the opening of its new Stockton HQ and flagship store.

Furniture and furnishings retailers enjoyed standout growth in the second quarter of 2015, according to the British Independent Retailers Association (bira).

AndersonsInverurieMajor furniture independent Andersons of Inverurie enjoyed a fifth successive year of top and bottom line growth in the 12 months to end October.

kozeeSleepYorksThe tax man heads a long list of unsecured creditors of collapsed mattress maker Kozee Sleep, with 33 bed industry suppliers owed five and six figure sums.

VictoriaWhitestoneAcquisitive floorcoverings manufacturer and distributor Victoria is preparing to get the chequebook out again, its executive chairman says.

Furniture retailer Willow & Hall has opened its first showroom with a two-storey space in a period property in London.

Clearance ended strongly at department store chain John Lewis with Home sales trending up in the mid-teens.

hslDewsburyInterview with HSL CFO Ian Jones on where the firm goes next — including which towns — as the upholstery vertical continues its rapid, self-funded growth path.

Retailers and manufacturers have until tomorrow night to enter the 2015–16 National Bed Federation Industry Awards.

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