The latest industry news and analysis—across all categories—listed in chronological order, with the most recent articles first.

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Maisons du Monde, the French furniture and home décor retailer, has Debenhams concessions.
Just one of the 22 Debenhams stores slated for closure by the chain as part of its company voluntary arrangement (CVA) is occupied by its principal furniture and homeware concession partners.

Floorcoverings retailer United Carpets & Beds has opened a new store with a unit at one of the North East's most significant home furnishings retail destinations.

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.

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Most of the stores to close will be in the south of England. Image is a Debenhams corporate photo, not depicting a threatened store.
Debenhams, the department store retailer, has confirmed plans to launch a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) that will see 22 of its shops close early next year and rent reductions secured elsewhere.

Debenhams has pinned part of a slowdown in sales in the past six months on weak furniture sales, saying its decision to exit own-bought lines impacted revenue online.

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Greiner wants to buy Recticel's Flexible Foams unit.
The owner of the Eurofoam business supplying comfort fillings to the Central and Eastern European markets wants to buy the Flexible Foams division of Recticel in a move that will prick the ears of many UK furniture makers.

The intellectual property (IP) of Allied Carpets and Floors-2-Go — the one-time market leaders in the carpets and wood flooring retail sectors respectively — is up for sale.

Laura Chiddey, who joined AHF in the newly-created head of commercial role last year, has been promoted to commercial director and appointed to the retailer's board.

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The retailer was loss-making in the first half of its financial year.
Furniture-to-fashion retailer Laura Ashley has revised down its profit forecast for 2018–19, saying it expects its results to "be significantly below market expectations."

In the words of CEO Wilf Walsh, it has been a "transitional year" for Carpetright, the UK's largest retailer of carpets and other floorcoverings.

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Two straight weeks of home growth for department store mutual.
The later arrival of Easter this year helped John Lewis & Partners break a negative home growth record stretching back to the autumn of 2017, with revenue climbing again last week.

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UK like-for-like sales trend improved significantly, Carpetright said.
Floorcoverings market leader Carpetright says returning customer confidence in the chain after its 2018 restructure has delivered a sales boost and put it "on the path to sustainable profitability."

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.

Sports Direct International's bid to buy Manchester home shopping group Findel looks doomed to fail unless the House of Fraser and Sofa.com owner improves the terms of its offer.

Ball & Young, the carpet underlay maker behind the Cloud 9 brand, returned to growth last year after taking action to offset the impact of rising input costs.

Retailer Dunelm Group is to open in Yeovil after agreeing to take over the former BHS unit at the Quedam Centre.

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Timothy Rhys-Evans MBE (far left) with members of the Leekes finance team.
Leekes Retail and Leisure Group has been named Medium/Large Finance Team of the Year at the second annual Finance Awards Wales, which were announced at Cardiff’s City Hall earlier this month.

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The value of sales dipped in Q1 2019, though beds were again the strongest category.
The later arrival of Easter and flaccid demand left UK retailers of furniture and carpets struggling to match year-earlier trade in the first quarter of 2019.

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.

Embattled department store chain Debenhams is said to be planning to close 20 stores at the turn of the year but needs the backing of creditors if it wants to follow through on the proposals.

Management reshuffle at 1000-store pan-European bedding retail group.

Portadown furniture wholesaler Annaghmore Agencies has taken on Damon Culley as its sales agent for southern and central England.

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Dreams' Buckinghamshire HQ.
National bed specialist Dreams has appointed Tony Holdway as chief marketing officer, filling the role vacated when Lisa Bond left the business at the end of last year.

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Three generations of the Spinks family: Daniel Spinks (buyer), Simon Spinks (managing director) and Peter Spinks (chairman).
Bed maker Harrison Spinks has received a Queen's Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development, the fifth time the 179-year-old company has been recognised by the awards programme.

Furniture Brands International, a new wholesale arm formed by furniture and interiors company Pavilion Broadway, has become UK distributor for the Jonathan Charles Fine Furniture and Theodore Alexander Modern brands.

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Sergio Bucher (inset) has resigned as Debenhams chief executive.
Terry Duddy has become interim executive chairman at Debenhams after chief executive Sergio Bucher stepped down last week in the aftermath of its prepack sale to lenders.

Sales grew at a faster rate for national floorcoverings supplier Designer Contracts in 2017–18 as the business continued to build out its depot network.

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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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Hilco has reintroduced furniture to Homebase.
Underlying half-year losses narrowed at home improvement retailer Homebase as the Hilco-backed chain cut costs and reintroduced higher-margin furniture products.

Rent-to-own furniture and electricals chain BrightHouse has named Anth Mooney as successor to Hamish Paton, who resigned as chief executive earlier this year.

Topps Tiles, the market leader in the UK wall and floorcoverings retail sector, has agreed to buy commercial tile supplier Strata Tiles from its private shareholders.

A one-time manager of the now defunct Dewsbury mattress maker Hick Lane Bedding has been disqualified as a director for six years following an investigation by The Insolvency Service.

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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.

James Sturrock, the boss of mattress vendor Eve Sleep since last September, said yesterday's appointment of Tim Parfitt as CFO completes the new management line-up.

Suppliers, customers and the taxman face a combined seven-figure shortfall from the insolvency of southeast mattress and bedroom furniture retail chain Beaumont Beds.

Sales of home merchandise climbed at John Lewis & Partners for the first time in six weeks with big-ticket furniture and floorcoverings leading the way.

A long hot summer in the UK wasn't enough for Gloster Furniture, the high-end outdoor furniture brand, to grow sales in the British market last year.

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Appointment completes management team says CEO James Sturrock.
Eve Sleep, the mattress and ancillary products retailer, has hired the CFO of rival furniture company Loaf as the replacement for its outgoing finance chief Abid Ismail in a coup for the business.

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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.

Attendance spiked at last week's globally-significant Salone del Mobile exhibition in Milan in a sign of healthy spend intention among trade buyers in world furniture markets.

Privately-owned department store retailer Beales could exit the North East of England after announcing its remaining store there will close later this year.

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Imports of foam and sprung mattresses combined are on the rise.
Foam and sprung mattress imports rose double-digit again in February, meaning British buyers have now bought more in from outside the UK in every month since May 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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Cabinet imports advanced in February.
Imports of living, dining and bedroom cabinet climbed in February as UK wholesalers and retailers shipped in more from China.

Retail footfall grew in March according to new figures from the British Retail Consortium, boosted by weather events that negatively impacted shopper turnout last year.

Higher sales and overhead management weren't enough to prevent Yorkshire kitchen, bedroom and bathroom cabinet maker Ellis Furniture slipping to a loss last year.

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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.

Alexandre Nodale, the longtime Conforama CEO who additionally became deputy CEO of parent Steinhoff International Holdings at the back end of 2017, is stepping down from both posts.

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Mike Marshall (left) with Millbrook Beds sales director Mark Hughes.
South Coast bed maker Millbrook has named well-known sales agent Mike Marshall as manager for Scotland as it looks to expand its customer base across the UK.

British retailers and wholesalers bought more carpets from Belgium — the largest foreign source of the product — in February, ending a negative stretch going back to July last year.

The owner and operator of a discount warehouse in the North West selling all types of furniture has been sent to jail after pleading guilty to VAT fraud.

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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.

KPMG reveals what was and wasn't included in March sale of Lanarkshire soft furnishings supplier.

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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.

Modern furniture maker MDF Italia has acquired the brand and other assets of compatriot Acerbis in a move that further consolidates the high-end of the Italian furniture design market.

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Mattress Firm closed 660 stores as part of a Chaper 11 restructuring.
Steve Stagner is stepping down for a second time as chief executive at Mattress Firm, America's largest beds retailer. He had returned last year to oversee the restructure necessitated as part of the fallout from accounting problems at parent company Steinhoff.

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Harrison Spinks has since launched TV advertising for the first time.
Sales and profits advanced for Harrison Spinks Beds ahead of it making its TV advertising debut this Christmas, but it was the Leeds group's components division that delivered the biggest uplift in performance last year.

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Store numbers were unchanged at 169 but will increase by another two in the final quarter of Dunelm's financial year.
Home goods retailer Dunelm Group made further gains in the first three months of 2019 as it continued to transition sales from its now-shut Worldstores business and attract new custom.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has told Harveys, the Steinhoff-owned furniture chain, to rethink advertising that made the claim of guaranteed Christmas delivery in a ruling that will likely be instructive to other retailers.