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Monthly Issue

From Home Furnishing Business

Editors Letter: What Does the Future Hold?

- By Bob Geroge

With this issue, we celebrate those retailers that have achieved a significant presence within the markets they serve (market share). Some of these retailers have maintained their position while expanding their market footprint. Others, with just their sheer volume, have a significant national presence without dominating a single market. At the same time, some retailers with revenue under $50 million are dominant in their own markets.

Without a doubt, traditional furniture retailing is under assault from other distribution channels, yet this has always been the case. I am sure that the Sears and Roebuck mail order catalog was a threat to all retailers. More recently, the “1-800” number segment was thought to be the demise of furniture retailing as we knew it. Yes, we will need to change some of our practices and improve our productivity and I am confident we will do so. As I write this, I am leaving for one of our Performance Groups. This group of furniture store owners will share their best ideas and what is working for them. All members will leave with pages of notes to execute when they return home. These retailers will be here in the future.

As I close this annual exercise of determining this year’s Power 50, rest assured the numbers define who is selected- no thumbs on the scale. I look at the 300+ that made the first cut. I know that some of those just below the cut will make it to the cutoff next year. But most importantly, these 300+ represent over $30 billion in sales or approximately 30% of the market share.

Let’s continue into the future- history is on our side.

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