Lifestyle to ship first outdoor sets
November 13, 2017,
HIGH POINT, N.C. – Lifestyle International will send out its first shipments of its new outdoor line in January.
A promotional dining set, a sectional sofa and a group of sectional, loveseat and chair comprise the orders, said Derrick Ng, executive vice president for Lifestyle.
The case goods sourcing company debuted its outdoor collection at the October market. Ng said he conceived the line after noticing many of Lifestyle’s customers don’t carry outdoor furniture.
He also noticed the disparity in outdoor collections sold by retailers. “When I look at the outdoor, it doesn’t have a standard look to the design,” Ng said.
“No one is identical. You maybe can compare sectionals 100 inches long, maybe can compare the size and the price, but for the looks, the fabrics and the colors, and the weaving and the rattan and the different materials, there are many combinations.”
Lifestyle chose to target moderately priced furniture. “Walmart and Target and Home Depot can sell $99 for a table and four,” Ng said. “This is the category where we will not compete with them because they have very big buying power and they can sell very, very cheap. So we will be mid-price point, not too high end, but affordable. We are targeting the retail price point between $1,000 and $2,000, max.”
Lifestyle has years of experience handling factory sourcing and production, but outdoor furniture presented an unexpected challenge.
“The factory, they have seasonal productions,” Ng said. “To hit the (outdoor) seasons in the customers’ countries, they need to ship everything from September into January. This is probably their busiest time to ship.
“When we approach them we also face the season timing, we have to squeeze in, see if the factory can expand capacity. This is right now the only challenge.”
Ng declined to say which retailers have ordered the outdoor line or where those orders will be shipped, but said he expects Lifestyle to ship at least 20 sets in January. Lifestyle also will debut more outdoor furniture at the January Las Vegas market.
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Don't miss the November digital edition of Casual Living! In this month’s issue, we look to the future of retail with a spotlight on technology. Assistant Editor Alex Milstein breaks down the basics of artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality (AR) and how they’re changing the furniture shopping experience. We also explain how building engagement on social media channels can boost business for retailers.
You’ve waited two years, and it’s finally here! Casual Living’s biennial Universe Study offers a comprehensive snapshot of the outdoor category, highlighting its growth across all segments from furnishings to shade to grills.
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• Casual Insights: Kathy Wall of The Media Matters offers insight on refreshing your brand.