Danish childrens’ furniture producer Flexa built on modest growth in 2013 with a stronger uplift last year.

featherAndBlackNew FD at Feather & Black, while Wade Group writes off intra-group debt. Director Oliver Spark — also joint md at Multiyork — provides a steer on trading. Sign in for more.

Collins and Hayes md Matt O’Flynn has been confirmed as the new chairman of the Association of British Furniture Manufacturers (BFM).

excelExhibitions company UBM EMEA Built Environment says it plans to focus on niche events and has closed its May Design Series show.

fairwayStAustellThe trading climate remained weak in 2014–15 according to regional chain Fairway Furniture, one of the strongest independents in southern England.

Dundee manufacturer JTC Furniture has written to employees warning it may need to make job cuts after a market-wide downturn in demand.

Retail giant Marks & Spencer has restated its reported online sales total because it originally didn’t reveal the breakdown on returns between products bought online and instore.

BoConcept fasciaUnderlying profits doubled as revenue continued to trend up for one of premium furniture design brand BoConcept’s largest franchisees in 2013–14.

Rising furniture sales in May completed 12 months of consecutive volume and value growth for the category, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Coop Danmark group retail director Michael Loeve has been appointed CEO of B&Q’s UK and Ireland operation, parent company Kingfisher has announced.

hulstaShowroomPremium case goods producer Hulsta Furniture says it will continue to follow a path of investing in its own shops and concessions in the UK.

Value variety retail chain Boyes posted strong top and bottom line growth as it took its store network past the half century mark in the year to end January.

Furniture firms placed big orders beefing up production last year, to be the benefit of one of Europe’s largest machinery manufacturers.

retailParkConsumer furniture and floorcoverings prices dropped again in May despite overall price deflation ending after just a single month.

Italian furniture design company B&B Italia plans to built out its international sales base after agreeing to sell a majority stake to a European investment firm.

Premium fabrics and furnishings group Walker Greenbank says it has capitalised on rising demand at the top end of the market so far this year.

baltaBritish investment group Doughty Hanson has agreed to sell its stake in major European carpets and flooring group Balta to a US private equity firm.

Furniture retailer MADE has put together an interiors collection in partnership with home interest magazine Livingetc.

Furniture test house FIRA International has announced the dates for furniture flammability training courses at its Hertfordshire HQ.

rodgersYorkRodgers of York, one of the largest independents in the North of England, says major refurbishment and rebrand plans are scheduled for an autumn completion.

Shopper numbers at out-of-town retail parks rose for a seventeenth consecutive month in May, according to the British Retail Consortium.

Dids Macdonald has been awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for her services to the design industry.

healsWestbourneGroveImpairment charges pushed designer furniture retailer Heal’s to a bigger deficit in 2013–14 ahead of its announced store closure and opening programme.

The last remaining exhibition stands for next month’s Manchester Furniture Show have been sold, organisers have confirmed.

kozeeSleepYorksBedding and fillings giant John Cotton Group has acquired properties belonging to the collapsed Yorkshire mattress manufacturer Kozee Sleep Beds.

addspaceFurnitureProfits fell at flat-pack furniture maker Addspace in the year to end September despite what it described as an ‘excellent’ increase in sales.

British furniture manufacturers grew exports in April thanks to strong demand from the US and gains in key European markets.

Argos said like-for-likes declined 3.9 per cent in the three months to end May with sales adversely impacted by market declines in key electrical and seasonal product categories.

The Manchester Furniture Show is to support a local social enterprise furniture upcycling scheme that provides opportunities for unemployed young people.

Chinese furniture importsChinese furniture imports into Britain dropped 4 per cent in April as UK retail buyers and importers bought more from other Far East nations and Europe.

Houseology — the premium ecommerce design store that rebranded from Occa-Home in April — has unveiled its new-look website.

ikeaSweetBriarRetailParkIKEA agreeing to take over a retail park store from the Dixons Carphone group in Norwich marks a sea change for the retail giant in the UK.

Furniture performed strongly in a tough month for retail in May, according to the British Retail Consortium.

ikeaSweetBriarSmRetail giant IKEA is to open a small-format store on a prominent retail park in the East of England, the Furnishing Report understands.

Oak Furniture Land fascia coRising sales and a 350 basis point gross margin improvement helped profits jump 55 per cent at Oak Furniture Land in the year to end September.

East of England and online beds specialist Mattressman is on the lookout for new store space as it looks to take its profile national.

home24European online furniture retailer Home24 has raised another €120m in a funding round led by a leading Scottish based investment group.

elysWimbledonProfits jumped nearly 10 per cent for independent stores group Morleys with strong top line growth at its Wimbledon and Enfield sites in the year to end January.

johnLewisBedroomBig-ticket furniture and beds lines sold through as John Lewis’ Home directorate delivered 7.9 per cent year-on-year growth last week.

bedworld04062015Ecommerce retail brands Bedworld and Saso are back trading again through a different corporate structure after the previous one was liquidated.

Heritage Long Eaton sofa group Steed Upholstery — which is celebrating its 50th anniversary year in 2015 — is to relaunch its Ashley House brand.

Retailers Oak Furniture Land and sister brand SofaStore will sponsor Burnley Football Club throughout the 2015–16 football season starting from August.

stollersWebRevenue growth escalated at Barrow furniture retailer Stollers in 2013–14 with more to come this year as the privately owned firm celebrates its 110th anniversary.

Investors bring cash but they also bring knowledge, contacts and experience.

Darren Shapland will become chairman at online marketplace retailer Notonthehighstreet Enterprises later this month.

kmFurnitureExtNorth Derbyshire furniture manufacturer KM Furniture has been placed into administration and its workforce laid off.

GilliesBroughtyFerryExtIndependent furniture and home retailer Gillies of Broughty Ferry enjoyed a third year of successive sales growth with all four of its stores making gains in 2013–14.

Ecommerce furniture retailer Loaf is planning to open a showroom at a former furniture store in London’s emerging SW8 postcode.

Beds specialist Dreams has reopened its Kings Lynn showroom featuring its new interior layout and store design.

htlRevenue growth in Europe slowed at Far East leather source HTL in the first quarter of 2015 after having accelerated throughout last year.

Home shopping ecommerce and mail-order group Shop Direct is to close its Woolworths website in under two weeks time.

IKEA, the world’s biggest furniture and home retailer, says the opening of a new wind farm in Sweden has made it energy independent in the Nordic region.

kozeeSleepYorksAdministrators have laid off all bar 14 staff at collapsed Dewsbury mattress manufacturer Kozee Sleep Beds after failing to find a buyer.

RiazAhmedScholefieldMillBeds and sofas manufacturer Sweet Dreams has acquired a historic mill for around £1m, which it plans to use for its growing upholstery arm Comfort Zone Sofas.

Furniture stores in Ireland enjoyed robust growth in April, a month in which higher car sales drove an overall retail uplift.

The Sleep Council has relaunched and upgraded its Sleep Biz website, a resource for retailers providing tools to help them sell more beds and mattresses.

BoConcept, the international contemporary furniture retailer, has revised upwards its sales and profits forecast for 2014–15 because of stronger demand and lower-than-expected costs.

tapiTapi, the new flooring chain from ex-Carpetright director Martin Harris, has launched its first store in London with two more to follow shortly ahead of a national roll-out.

Martin Harris — son of Lord Harris — has launched his new Tapi carpets and floorings chain, with a slew of ex-Carpetright colleagues joining him on the retailer's launch board.

Brits haven’t been this bullish in nearly a decade, according to a consumer confidence survey by global research consultancy Nielsen.

haloTomCatInternational design and distribution group Halo has taken action against a number of companies across China for copying some of its best-known furniture designs.

Fewer than one in every ten retailers saw sales decline in early May trading, according to business group the CBI.

dreamsAtHomeSmlNational beds giant Dreams has opened its first Dreams at Home pilot store at Watford in partnership with a local independent retailer and sourcing company (see related).

Shoppers stayed away from big-ticket shopping destinations over the Bank Holiday weekend, according to a leading retail research consultancy.

Philip Lawrence, CEO at the Coal Authority, is to take a non-executive post at floorcoverings group Headlam.

leekesCovLeekes’ home department store business returned to profit at the EBITDA line in 2014–15 on the back of strong revenue growth.

Stressless brand owner Ekornes made a strong start to 2015 including rising revenues in the British and Irish retail markets.

retail sales thumbSales volumes in the furniture industry were up double-digits for a third successive month in April and you have to go back to May last year for the last year-on-year decline.

The National Bed Federation will this weekend launch a six month consumer advertising campaign designed to highlight the safety, cleanliness and honesty of its members’ beds.

sharpsWardrobeUnderlying profits jumped 30 per cent at national bedroom furniture chain Sharps in 2013–14 as it made the most of new stores and above-the-line promotion.

kozeeSleepYorksDewsbury mattress and bed base manufacturer Kozee Sleep Beds has been placed into administration after a nightmare 12 months.

furnitureVillageStoreExt2015Furniture Village founder and CEO Peter Harrison says it will trade up as it implements its expansion strategy over the next five years.

Year-on-year furniture retail prices remained lower in April though the rate slowed for a third successive month, according to the Office for National Statistics.

atlanticShoppingMargins were squeezed but sales continued to gain momentum for online and warehouse furniture and furnishings retailer Atlantic Shopping in 2014.

Furniture manufacturers wanting to show at this autumn’s I Saloni Worldwide event in Moscow can cut costs after the BFM secured grant funding.

lucasAylesburyPrivately owned furniture retailer Stokers is expanding its store network with the addition of one of Britain’s largest single-site furniture businesses.

Ireland and Scotland furniture and furnishings retailer Harry Corry will pay less rent on a number of stores after all bar two of its landlords agreed a CVA proposal.

The National Bed Federation has elected Ebrahim Patel, md at Leicester manufacturer Vogue Beds, as its next president.

dreamsInterview2Interview: CEO Mike Logue shares his thoughts on production, his relationship with other Sun-backed retailers, store pilots, expansion plans and product strategy.

retailParkThe number of shoppers fell in all retail locations bar out-of-town parks in April, according to the British Retail Consortium.

Online home sales lifted 12 per cent last week to help total category revenue beat year-earlier trade at department store John Lewis.

firaTesting, calibration and advisory services provider Exova Group has acquired FIRA International owner BM Trada in a deal worth around £22m.

symphonySymphony group made the most of strong demand in 2014 with a big leap in sales, with profits further boosted by a large gain on property.

The Sleep Council says retailer demand is behind a renewed push to promote British made beds.

dreamsSolihullextCoNational beds retailer Dreams is on track to double profits in 2015 with sales continuing to trend upwards in the first four months of the year.

tescoHomeplusSupermarket giant Tesco is to close its six remaining Homeplus stores following the earlier closure of a similar number announced in January (see related).

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