Heritage Home Group, parent company to Hickory Chair, Henredon, and 10 other furniture brands, officially moved its headquarters from St. Louis to High Point over the summer, expanding to a 100,000 sf office space large enough to house 300 employees, and debuted all-new showrooms at High Point Market this week.
High Point headquarters for Heritage Home Group
The corporate relocation made way for other changes, most notably a complete revision to the layout and presentation of its High Point showrooms. The company reconfigured its previously occupied space on the sixth floor of the IHFC building in order to achieve a more impactful footprint for well-known brands, and the group now also occupies space in Market Square featuring Hickory Chair, Henredon, Pearson, Maitland Smith, Lane Venture, Drexel Heritage and La Barge—a strategy that has its family of 10 showrooms spread across two floors.
Editor at Large spoke with Heritage Home Group’s Chief Marketing Officer, Roxanne Bernstein, about the strategic move.
Why did you choose to move the company’s headquarters to High Point?
High Point is the heart of the furniture industry—this is where the talent is, the knowledge base, the expertise—this is where we belong.
How is Heritage Home Group different from the former entity, Furniture Brands International?
We are a North Carolina-based furniture company with a nimble management team focused on our customer/dealer base. We operate as one company with 10 venerable brands that we are committed to protecting and growing. We leverage the knowledge base, manufacturing footprint, best practices and more across each of our brands. We have strong financial backing and solid financial fundamentals. We communicate clearly, honestly and often with our dealer base.
Henredon section of the new showroom space
Heritage Home Group has some well-established brands. What plans do you have for them in the short term?
Every one of our brands will continue to develop and launch value-added, highly differentiated product. Further, each one of our 10 brands has a new showroom for this edition of High Point Market. We have been under construction in more than 200,000 sf of showroom space since late summer. We have exciting new product introductions across every brand and new websites for all brands to be launched in 2015. We intend to continue our advertising across our brands, drive greater digital activation, and launch both retail sales associate training to assist our dealer base and designer focused training courses to benefit our designer base.
Are you planning to acquire any other brands? Are there home furnishings categories you're interested in pursuing, i.e. outdoor, soft goods, surfaces etc.?
While we do not have any current plans to acquire, we remain open to strategic acquisitions that add value to our organization.
Any big new hires or leadership changes?
Jason Foy is now VP of Sales for the Pearson and Hickory Chair brands. Grace Cobb is the new Merchandising Director for Pearson. Both individuals are industry veterans and passionate about the brands. We also recently hired an incredibly talented new VP of Upholstery Design for Thomasville, Reyna Moore, and an industry marketing veteran to re-join the marketing team, Mark Smiley.
What does a furniture brand need to be desirable in today's marketplace?
GREAT product that is both value-added and highly differentiated in the marketplace. Once you have that, you need effective marketing that tells the brand story of authenticity and differentiation.