Interview Synopsis

Forum Pulse: US mattress industry – Q2 2021 update

  • Credit
  • Consumer
  • North America

As with many industries, mattresses saw a slump during the COVID-19 pandemic, but the sector is starting to spring back. YoY sales growth in Q1 2021, a senior executive from Ashley Furniture Industries Inc commented, was “north of about 35% and then throughout Q2, our growth was about 55% overall.” Albeit, it’s a “little bit of a different story” compared with 2019, with YoY growth less dramatic.

Unpacking what’s new in the US mattress industry

Next on the agenda was a sales breakdown by brand, with the specialist covering how incumbents and newer entrants are faring. And the prospects for full-year volumes were also discussed, with better consumer awareness of mattresses and wellbeing cited as reasons for a positive outlook. “What’s happening is that the pie is growing bigger. For years, Ispa would publish rates that, on average, 17% of the consumers in the US are buying mattresses. Today, we think that number is north of 20%.”

Looking closely at the competitive landscape, the specialist highlighted Purple as one to watch. “Purple, no doubt, has gained the most market share, because it continues to dominate online and then it’s getting a tremendous amount of bricks-and-mortar retailers.” Its proposition resonates with both customers and industry, with a product innovation that is “uniquely different”.

On the topic of industry challenges, the Ashley Furniture Industries executive noted which brands have been facing stock shortages, as well as commenting on broader supply-chain issues. Alongside problems with wood, where there’s been a “tremendous pass-through of price increases” owing to shortages, foam is a “major challenge” – with constrained supplies leading manufacturers to prioritise higher-end models.

Other subjects discussed include upcoming product releases, when the supply-chain issues will be resolved, and best- and worst-case scenarios for the industry in Q3.

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