The Furniture sector is facing a turbulent consumer climate. Huge corporates such as Carpetright and Laura Ashley have been hit by profit warnings, and others like Warren Evans have plunged into administration. Whilst industry stalwarts have suffered, many pure play competitors have seen stellar growth.
Harsha Wickremasinghe, Associate at Livingstone, seeks to explain the sea-change taking place across the furniture sector. The key, he argues, lies in their real estate. Bricks-and-mortar based retailers are struggling under the burden of their expansive store portfolios, many of which need urgent redevelopment.
Upcoming lease renewals mean that the next few years will be critical, and it may well be time for retailers to make difficult decisions about where to invest, and where to cut back.
Read Harsha’s full take on the fast-paced developments in the furniture sector in Furnishing Report here.