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Buyers find some new bedding lines compelling at High Point Market

Retailers look for strong promotional hooks

Sarah Appleton, left, and Krista Grohsman, executives with Spring Time Bedding, stand in front of marketing materials that feature their pictures.Sarah Appleton, left, and Krista Grohsman, executives with Spring Time Bedding, stand in front of marketing materials that feature their pictures.

HIGH POINT - Traffic in mattress showrooms at the High Point Market this week was generally light, but retailers zeroed in on new lines that offered strong promotional hooks and compelling sales stories.
Some producers said the market started well Friday but then tapered off over the weekend.
Bedding producers found some positive developments, including meetings with significant bedding retailers, high-quality traffic, and interest in strong promotions and better beds. Hybrids were on many retailers' shopping lists.
Jim Nation, president of Five Star Mattress, said the market started on a good note for his company. "Traffic has been a little stronger than a year ago," he said.
"If good is the new great and fair is the new good, this has been a fair market," said Norman Rosenblatt, chairman of Therapedic. "The retailers who did come in were optimistic and their overall outlooks are positive. A lot of that has to do with the resolution of the shutdown in Washington."
Gold Bond's new Smart Series of hybrid beds got a good retail response, said Bob Naboicheck, president. He said the line offers "the best in new and old technology," and noted that retailers responded to the mix of latex and gel in the beds.
Jamison's Hotel Resort Collection, which builds on the company's expertise in the hotel industry, resonated with retailers, reported Ken Hinman, senior vice president. The new hybrid line, which combines various specialty foams and micro-coils, offers different feels from other hybrid beds.

Richard Fleck of Paramount Sleep shows a display for the company’s new A.H. Beard line of high-end bedding.Richard Fleck of Paramount Sleep shows a display for the company’s new A.H. Beard line of high-end bedding.
"Retailers love it," Hinman said. "They love the simplicity of the selling story and the voice that Jamison has in the hotel field."
Ashley executive Ben Thorud noted that Ashley is promoting hybrids in its showroom, and said dealers are particularly interested in value-oriented promotions they can use to spark fourth-quarter sales.
Richard Fleck, chief marketing officer for Paramount, said many retailers asked for high-end beds. Paramount's answer to those requests is a revamped high-end A.H. Beard line, retailing from $1,699 to $5,000. New hybrids in the Nature's Spa line are also in demand, he said.
His overall assessment of market: "The quality of our customers has been great. That has been the saving grace."
Boyd Specialty sleep is picking up new customers with its showing of new Broyhill and Thomasville specialty sleep lines, officials said. "The people who are here include new dealers and they have been buying," said Dirk Smith, Southwest regional sales manager. "The response to the new lines has been great."
New High Point exhibitor Spring Time Bedding, displaying a broad range of the company's innerspring and specialty sleep lines, has impressed its market visitors, said Isaac Jakobovits, CEO. "They like our products," he said.
Among the successful introductions at Spring Time were GoPedic latex, gel and memory foam pillows retailing from $79 to $99.
Pure LatexBliss started strong in High Point, a good indicator for this show, said Kurt Ling, president. "Our close rate is high," he added.
Classic Brands previewed a new specialty sleep design that Mike Zippelli, CEO, said offers significantly cooler sleep. "We have something special," he said of the design, which includes reticulated memory foam on an anatomically correct base.
Classic's parent used this market to launch a sister company, DeLandis Furniture, featuring specialty foams in the upholstery seating. "We have been thrilled with the traffic," Zippelli added.
Classic and DeLandis showed together here in a new showroom.
*Click here to read all our High Point Market coverage.

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