Industry Views - October 2013

Experts Weigh In On The Industry’s
Greatest Challenge

LDB Interior Textiles asked suppliers participating in our State of the Industry report called “Exploring Life ‘After’” that begins on p. 10 what the greatest challenge is in home textiles industry today. Here are their thoughts:

“[The greatest challenge is] for retailers to raise their prices so there is no more margin compression at the manufacturer’s level.”—Stanley Mieszkowski, executive vice-president of sales and marketing, The Northwest Company

“To maintain the business one currently has with his customer and to be able to add to the list is a tough challenge these days. Although I have not seen them last too long, private brands by retailers also create inconsistencies in the market.”—Sam Samani, chief merchandising officer and senior vice-president, Pacific Coast Home Furnishings

“The same challenges continue to exist: commodity pricing and reliable supply chain. The uncertainty in our political endeavors will continue to have our consumer base on edge, therefore providing great product at the proper value equation is key.”—Kevin Kuehl, president, Baltic Linen Company

“Retail continues to be extremely competitive for these products—so much so that the industry constantly stands at the brink of sacrificing quality, value and comfort to match a price point. Educating both retail buyers and consumers as to what the true value is for a durable, high-quality comfort sleep product is an ongoing challenge and as the competition increases, so does buyer confusion. For us, we knew we had to face the intense proliferating competition with different tactics: rather than chase our competitors in the bedding race with more and more technical benefits and functions, we believe the Snuggle Home™ brand will continue to evolve as a Lighthouse brand—one that shines such a strong and unique light on the ultimate product benefit (“creating more snuggle up moments”) that the shopper reframes her thinking about the product’s purpose, is drawn to choose these products over others, and is able to foster a deeper emotional connection with the brand.”—Nancy Heaton Lonstein, marketing director, Jeffco Fibres

“The stability of brands that come and go and their value. As important, the licensor supporting the brands allowing licensees proper time to develop the brand and category they sign up for, before the brand is pulled for a few more signing dollars.”—Barry Samberg, president, Famous Home Fashions

“Innovation, competitiveness and a determination in not settling for low-cost alternatives.”—Dan Sinykin, president, Monterey Mills, parent company of Denali® Home Furnishings

“Focusing on quality, innovation and listening to the marketplace.”—Jeff Gold, vice-president, sales and marketing, Anji Mountain

“Providing innovative designs and products.”—Wade Svicarovich, president, Kimlor

LDB INTERIOR TEXTILES is published by EW Williams Publications Company
Phone: 1-201- 592-7007 Fax: 1-212-988-0588