Feb. 28, 2013 15:00 UTC

Flexsteel Industries, Inc. Expands the Brand to the UK with Westbridge Furniture

DUBUQUE, Iowa--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Flexsteel Industries, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLXS) an Iowa-headquartered upholstered furniture manufacturer and marketer, has joined forces with Wales-based Westbridge Furniture Designs Limited, to bring Flexsteel’s brand of quality American engineering and construction to the United Kingdom.

Flexsteel and Westbridge associates tour the Westbridge, UK operation in January, just prior to atte ...

Flexsteel and Westbridge associates tour the Westbridge, UK operation in January, just prior to attending the INTERIORS 2013 trade show at the NEC in Birmingham to premiere the Flexsteel Lounge line. (L to R): Roger Freeman, Manager of Retail Development - Flexsteel; Stephen Hampton, Chief Executive - Belfield Furnishings and Westbridge Furniture; Paul Islip, Managing Director - Westbridge Furniture; Charles Piekenbrock, Director of Marketing - Flexsteel. Picture taken January 2013 at Westbridge Furniture offices in Wales. (Photo: Business Wire)

Successfully launched in January during the Interiors UK 2013 show at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham, England, the new Flexsteel/Westbridge collaboration was met with great interest. Marketed as “Flexsteel Lounge,” the displayed line included new Westbridge-designed custom product as well as select groups from Flexsteel’s Asian-imported Latitudes collection. Showcased with pride and respect was Flexsteel’s famous blue steel seat spring; seen throughout the showroom were working models of the spring, both full-size and miniature displays.

“At Flexsteel, we always say quality begins on the inside — and it starts with our lifetime warrantied, blue-steel seat spring. That seat spring is the foundation upon which our furniture, and our excellent reputation for quality and comfort, is built. Westbridge understands that the unique visual representation of our spring, along with its lifetime guarantee, makes for a very compelling story. It’s always been our USP — unique selling proposition. And now we’re taking it across the Atlantic Ocean: Flexsteel’s seat springs, manufactured in Dubuque, Iowa, USA, are being exported to the United Kingdom, so Europeans can enjoy the same luxurious comfortable seating Americans have enjoyed for more than a century,” said Lee David Fautsch, Vice President Sales—Home Furnishings, Flexsteel.

Westbridge Furniture, a distinguished and growing company, founded in 2004 as part of the Belfield Group of Companies and headquartered in Holywell, Flintshire, Wales, sells to independent furniture retailers and high-end department stores throughout the United Kingdom. Today it is the largest signature-brand upholstery company in the UK. Employing more than 600 people at three certified “green” factories, Westbridge markets three levels of fashionable, quality upholstered goods: Westbridge, Flexsteel Lounge, and Spirit.

“We are very enthusiastic about our relationship with Westbridge Furniture. This is an outstanding company with visionary leadership. We’re eager to work with them to introduce the Flexsteel brand throughout the UK and to expand global distribution,” said Fautsch.

Westbridge is now taking orders and building the furniture, featuring the Flexsteel brand name, at its own factories in Great Britain. While the style, scale, and cushioning components are unique to Westbridge, specifically designed to meet UK customer needs and European industry standards, the Flexsteel Lounge pieces will feature Flexsteel’s American-made blue steel seat spring in the frame construction.

“We were drawn to Flexsteel Industries, Inc. because of the company’s high quality standards, legendary seat spring and strong reputation for dependability. We also believe we share a common culture and common values. Flexsteel enjoys a powerful, positive image in the furniture industry and is well-respected for its long history of success, capable leadership, and financial strength,” said Steve Hampton, Chief Executive, Belfield Furnishings and Westbridge Furniture. “We are excited for the opportunity to help build the Flexsteel brand in the UK and we are confident we will be successful in doing so.”

Flexsteel Industries, Inc., has been designing and crafting fine upholstered furniture in the United States since the 1890s. The publicly traded company, headquartered in Dubuque, Iowa, operates several U.S. manufacturing and distribution locations, manages two permanent showrooms, and sells its products across the globe. Flexsteel is a designer, manufacturer, importer, and marketer of quality upholstered and wood furniture for residential, recreational, vehicle, office, hospitality, and healthcare markets. Flexsteel posted net sales of more than 350 million dollars in 2012. Further information on Flexsteel Industries, Inc., can be accessed at http://flexsteel.com.

Westbridge Furniture Designs Limited was established in 2004 with a clear vision to develop the finest furniture designs, manufactured in the highest quality materials to the exacting standards of the industry's leading craftsmen. Selling exclusively to independent furniture stores and exclusive retailers, Westbridge has grown to the point where the company now employs more than 600 people across three dedicated manufacturing facilities in North Wales. For more information: www.westbridgefurniture.com

Contacts

Flexsteel Industries, Inc.
Justin Mills, 563-585-8294
or
Westbridge Furniture
Paul Islip, +44-1352-714131 or 07712-077791


Source: Flexsteel Industries, Inc.

Smart Multimedia Gallery

Flexsteel and Westbridge associates tour the Westbridge, UK operation in January, just prior to attending the INTERIORS 2013 trade show at the NEC in Birmingham to premiere the Flexsteel Lounge line. (L to R): Roger Freeman, Manager of Retail Development - Flexsteel; Stephen Hampton, Chief Executive - Belfield Furnishings and Westbridge Furniture; Paul Islip, Managing Director - Westbridge Furniture; Charles Piekenbrock, Director of Marketing - Flexsteel. Picture taken January 2013 at Westbridge Furniture offices in Wales. (Photo: Business Wire)

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http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20130228005410/en