• Cindy W. Hodnett

Natuzzi rolls out Re-Vive in Milan

Global launch introduces new recliner technology

MILAN, Italy — After a successful launch at the High Point Market in October, Natuzzi Group introduced Re-vive to a hometown audience in December.

 Natuzzi’s Milan showroom offers a dramatic setting for the introduction of the Re-vive chair.Natuzzi’s Milan showroom offers a dramatic setting for the introduction of the Re-vive chair.

Against the backdrop of Natuzzi's sophisticated contemporary showroom in the heart of Milan, company officials introduced Re-vive, described as a "performance recliner" with more than 120 patents, to a predominantly Italian crowd of several hundred on Dec. 10, punctuating an unprecedented global launch that began in the United States two months earlier.

"Recliner technology hadn't changed in the last 50 years, so we looked to nature for examples of strength, flexibility and multidimensional movement," said Pasquale Natuzzi, chairman and CEO. "With that in mind, we designed the recliner to be able to distribute the weight of the body so it can balance in a neutral position."

Natuzzi collaborated with Formway, a New Zealand furniture design company, on Re-vive, which earned Natuzzi an innovation award at December's Esprit Meuble furniture show in Paris.

 This is one of three styles of Re-vive on display at Natuzzi’s Milan showroom.This is one of three styles of Re-vive on display at Natuzzi’s Milan showroom.

At both the High Point and Milan launches, a deconstructed Re-vive model was on display, juxtaposing the intricacy of the chair's components against the streamlined profile of the finished product. Guests at both events were invited to try out Re-vive firsthand, a move that led retailer Jim Painter of Contempo Concepts in Winston-Salem, N.C., to place an order for his store after seeing the chair for the first time in High Point.

"I think it adds something new and innovative to the marketplace, and that is what consumers are looking for," Painter said. "I am impressed with the design of the chair and the technology behind it."

Painter said he expects to have Re-vive on his floor in the spring. A longtime Natuzzi retailer, he said he thinks Re-vive is a strong addition to the Natuzzi line that he says offers "Italian design, quality and depth."

Founded in 1959, Natuzzi Group now includes Natuzzi Editions, Natuzzi Italia and a private-label line. In addition to the international launch of Re-vive, Natuzzi is currently working to implement several key business strategies in 2014 to strengthen the company's global position.

"During the worst 10 years of the economy, we have invested hundreds of millions of dollars in our company," Natuzzi said. "We don't have debt and are well capitalized, and now we are focusing on redefining our brand strategy, our product distribution strategy and our supply chain organization. We are implementing our five-year business plan and simplifying our brand approach."

According to company representatives, the simplified branding strategy involves promoting Natuzzi Italia as a whole-home brand of upscale upholstery shown with case goods and accessories in a total home environment.

Cindy HodnettCindy W. Hodnett | Upholstery/Style Editor

As the Upholstery/Style Editor for Furniture/Today, I spend my work hours studying the sloping curves of sofa frames, the intricacies of fabric and the nail head trim and button accents that function as jewelry on a piece of upholstery. I research the companies that bring these things together for retailers, and ultimately consumers, and interview industry leaders about their business strategies and where they think furniture is heading in the future. And when traveling, I provide a sneak peek at what I'm seeing, whether at international markets or in High Point or Las Vegas.

I look forward to sharing what I see and I hope you'll feel free to do the same. Email me at chodnett@furnituretoday.com or follow me on Twitter @CynthiaWHodnett.

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