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FBI Confident on First Quarter Assessment

By Home Furnishings Business in on March 2006

Full-line major Furniture Brands International reaffirmed its guidance on business trends and operations for its first fiscal quarter of 2006. An announcement of actual results will come May 3.

"Business conditions remain relatively unchanged from the end of January when we last commented on current trends," said FBI Chairman and CEO Mickey Holliman in a release Thursday. "Orders are tracking up in the mid-single digits and sales are slightly positive versus the year-ago period."

Holliman anticipates first-quarter earnings per share of $0.43 to $0.47, which include a previously announced restructuring, asset impairment and severance charge of $0.02 per share.

FBI's brands include Broyhill, Lane, Thomasville, Henredon, Drexel Heritage and Maitland-Smith.

HP Market Authority to Increase Promotions Spending

By Home Furnishings Business in on March 2006 Backed by state and local government funding, the International Home Furnishings Market Authority approved a plan Wednesday to increase its annual operating budget to $7.3 million.

Under the plan, the budget will increase from $3.3 million a year, and the additional money will be collected from the cities of High Point, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Burlington and Archdale, showroom owners and the state of North Carolina. Formal requests are being prepared asking for a combined $1 million in annual financing for five years from the communities.

The money will be spent on market promotions and marketing, guest services like free food, entertainment and additional downtown parking.

The authority plans to ask the High Point City Council to increase the showroom tax from 6 cents a square foot to 14 or 15 cents a square foot. Currently, the city collects about $720,000 in showroom taxes. The increase could net an additional $1 million.

Market Editorial Opportunity for Manufacturers

By Home Furnishings Business in on March 2006 Home Furnishings Business, the business and strategy magazine for furniture retailers, is putting together its editorial coverage of the April 2006 International Home Furnishings Market in High Point.

As part of our coverage, we'll feature photographs of new products – FREE of charge – being shown at the market. Please don't send photos of products shown before; we won't consider them for the issue.

To take advantage of this opportunity, you should send quality images of products you'll be showcasing. We'll cull through the mountains of information and select images to include in the pages of our April issue, which will be distributed at the market as well as to our retail subscribers.

We can work with color slides, transparencies or prints. You may also send images on a CD in JPEG format with a resolution of 300 dpi or higher. At that resolution, the image must be at least 6" x 8". If you send images smaller than this, we may not be able to include your product in the issue.

Along with the pictures, be sure to include the following information about the product being shown:

Company Name:

Contact Name and Number:

High Point Showroom Location:

Name of Item:

Collection Name, if Applicable:

Brief Description:

Suggested Retail Price Point:

We need this information in hand no later than Wednesday, March 23. Please use FedEx or another express delivery service to ensure prompt delivery and tracking.

Send all photos and press releases to:

Sheila Long O'Mara

5 Springsdans Lane

Columbia, SC 29229


Katz Joins Schnadig

By Home Furnishings Business in on March 2006 Industry veteran Jeff Katz has been named vice president of corporate sales at Schnadig Furniture.

In the new position, Katz will oversee sales management, focusing on developing growth strategies through independent and regional retailers. He reports to Alan Cole, president and chief executive officer of Schnadig.

Prior to joining Schnadig, Katz was senior vice president of sales and marketing for Broyhill Furniture. He had also held merchandising positions at retailers HomeLife, Homemakers and Levitz.

"Jeff Katz is a great addition to our executive team," Cole said. "His years of retail experience are a major asset. His breadth of exposure at Broyhill further enhances his ability to significantly contribute to our strategic direction during this period of major change within our industry."

Restoration Hardware Names New Chief Financial Officer

By Home Furnishings Business in on March 2006 Chris Newman has been named senior vice president and chief financial officer of Restoration Hardware.

Prior to joining the lifestyle retailer, Newman was vice president and chief financial officer of store operations for Limited Brands where he worked the last seven years. During his tenure with Limited, Newman also served in executive financial roles at Bath and Body Works and Victoria's Secret. Prior to his time at Limited Brands, Newman held progressively responsible positions at PepsiCo in financial and strategic planning for more than nine years.

Newman began his career at J.P. Morgan and attended Brown University.

"We are very pleased to be able to announce that Chris is joining Restoration Hardware," said Gary Friedman, president, chairman and chief executive officer. "His deep experience with a variety of specialty retail brands in both retail store and direct channels is a perfect match for us. I believe Chris will acclimate very rapidly and be a key strategic partner on the senior management team."

Newman assumes the responsibilities of Patricia McKay, former executive vice president and chief financial officer for Restoration Hardware, who resigned in September to join Office Depot.

"I am thrilled to be joining the team at Restoration Hardware," Newman said. "I'm impressed with the brand and excited about the company's prospects for growth in both sales and profitability. I look forward to working with the finance team, senior management and other business partners to achieve Restoration Hardware's potential."
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