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Staer: Furniture sales rise 40% during summer months

Staer: Furniture sales rise 40% during summer months
07.07.2008, 20:13 12

Staer furniture producer, a top ten player domestically, sees sales soar by 40% during summer months compared with the first months of the year as a result of stepped up deliveries of new homes.
"As a rule, summer months bring bigger furniture sales than in the first part of the year as a lot of homes and housing complexes are finalised during this period, but also owing to Romanians' habit of renovating their homes and implicitly redecorate them during summer. In summer, too, many Romanians working abroad return home with additional financial resources which are many times invested in high-value acquisitions, implicitly in house furnishing and decoration," said Laura Matei, Staer marketing manager.
The company in the first four months of this year posted turnover worth 30m RN (8.2m euros), up 17% from the 25m RON (7.4m euros) reached in the same period of last year. For the entire 2008 year, Staer targets 40m-euro turnover. "The sales increase is due, on the one hand, to communications campaigns and also to offer diversification," specified Matei.
In 2007, Staer reported net income worth 1.8m euros, and 30.4m-euro turnover.
"We expect higher sales increases during the second half of this year, when we are to open further showrooms, located in retail parks that usually bring a high and constant customer flow," added Matei.
At present, Staer operates 25 stores, with the network to rise to 30 stores by yearend. "We haven't modified the initial target, but reaching it depends on the pace at which real estate developers' construction works progress, as the new showrooms are located in future retail parks," Matei also said.
Since the beginning of 2008, Staer has opened a store in Vaslui, with Brasov being targeted for the future location. Around 30% of Staer's sales are in instalments, with the biggest volumes being registered in big city stores "owing to the higher number of inhabitants and purchasing power".
In 2007, Staer closed 9 stores, in general with smaller sale areas and another 4 were relocated to Bucharest, Arad, Targu-Mures and Buzau.
"In the future, we do not plan to close down any more stores of Staer network, but possibly relocate some of them to some bigger exhibition area showrooms".
Staer owns a furniture plant in Galati, on a 40,000 square metres area, of which 18,000 square metres of built area.
Companies such as Mobexpert, IKEA, Elvila, Neoset, Staer compete on the furniture market, put at 1.1bn euros last year. The top ten furniture producers and retailers last year cumulated sales worth above half a billion euros, up 60% against 2006. This year, the furniture market is expected to grow by more than 10%.
Most Romanian retailers are concentrated on the low and medium-price segments and foreigners' aggressive entrance will be primarily felt in their turnovers.

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