Furniture manufacturer and retailer Funky Chunky Furniture has revealed a fresh experience through lockdown, having a very successful 2020.
Based in the North East of England, Funky Chunky Furniture has seen sales of its furniture, shelves and home accessories soar as consumers focused on home improvements.
It had its highest levels of sales ever in May, with revenues of £300,000, and then again June as sales rocketed to almost £380,000, as it dispatched record numbers of shelves and furniture to customers across the UK and into European countries including Germany and France.
Fortunately for us, during the lockdown and subsequently, there has been a surge in DIY and home improvements, presumably as people are spending longer at home they want it to be as nice as they can make it. As a result, we are currently experiencing a real surge in sales across our product range.
After gradually beginning to manufacture customer orders again at the start of May, a few weeks later the business was back to operating at full capacity. The growth has also enabled the business to expand and extend out its shift patterns to increase production - all while keeping its showroom closed for now.
Funky Chunky Furniture, which has seen sustained growth since it started in 2013, shared an insight into life after lockdown. Sophie O'Mahony, Marketing Manager, explained: "We have rigorous procedures in place for health and safety already, and these have been extended to fully cover the guidelines in place for Covid-19.
"While high street retail has been open for some weeks now we have taken the decision to keep our showroom, which is based at our workshop, closed for the time being. We are also not allowing customers to collect orders anymore, instead all are being dispatched. These two measures are to reduce footfall onto our premises and therefore potential risk to our team.
"Fortunately for us, during the lockdown and subsequently, there has been a surge in DIY and home improvements, presumably as people are spending longer at home they want it to be as nice as they can make it. As a result, we are currently experiencing a real surge in sales across our product range."
The business has seen shelves and mantels continue to be a big selling product area, while one unsurprising product line that’s doing particularly well is desks, as customers look to make more permanent working areas in their homes. Dining tables, perhaps in anticipation for that long-awaited family get-together, has also been very popular.
So how has the business managed to cope with the increased demand?
Sophie said: "To keep up with demand and capitalise on this consumer shift, we have introduced a new plant which will increase manufacturing efficiencies and create more jobs.
"We are operating two shifts in the workshop and we are busy recruiting new team members for the new shift, which will be fully operational by mid-August.
"We’re really in a very fortunate position right now. The plan is to increase our team by six, which includes one apprenticeship opportunity."