46% Share of global upholstered furniture manufactured in China in 2017
$69 billion Global upholstered furniture production in 2017
+4% Expected growth for upholstered furniture consumption in 2018
Highly sensitive to the economic climate, today the furniture market is bouncing back: demand is growing, and so are consumer expectations. In quantity, the number of seats produced globally grew by 27% between 2010 and 2016, to reach nearly 229 million units. In value, fabric represents 49% of sales and leather 33%. Nearly a third of upholstered furniture is produced by 200 manufacturers, of which 35% also have their own brands and distribution network.
The furniture industry is geographically disparate, particularly in terms of productivity. Factories in the United States, which have been automated for a long time, know how to produce with fewer operators but must modernize to stay competitive. In China, production sites, which are sometimes vast, are rapidly becoming automated.
Across the world, manufacturers are facing challenges of cost, labor availability and tighter delivery times to market. Due to the influence of millennials, there are further challenges: demand for personalization and competition from new players in e-commerce.