- The Foschini Group, one of
South Africa’s leading retail clothing groups, is making big inroads into
homeware and furniture.
- The company’s acquisition of
Tapestry Home Brands, which includes Coricraft, Dial-a-Bed, The Bed Store, and
Volpes, was recently given the green light by the Competition Commission, with
- Part of this agreement
includes opening a minimum of 35 new stores within three years under the four
- Foschini expects “to
comfortably overshoot” this target and, in the process, revive the local
furniture manufacturing industry.
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One of South Africa’s top retail
clothing groups, The Foschini Group (TFG), has set its sights on reviving the
country’s furniture manufacturing sector with the recent acquisition of four
familiar homeware brands.
More than 80% of TFG’s annual turnover
comes from clothing, with a diverse portfolio of outlets covering all fashion
bases. And while the group may be best known for brands like Foschini, Markham,
Sportscene, and, more recently, Jet, TFG does dabble in homeware and furniture.
TFG’s main homeware brands – @home and
@homelivingspace – have been around for almost two decades. Homeware, although
only contributing 5.2% to TFG’s turnover, has grown by more than 30% over the
past year, according to the group’s most recent results presentation.
Now, TFG’s homeware department is
expected to surge much further ahead with the acquisition of Tapestry Home
Brands, which was recently approved by South Africa’s Competition Commission
with certain conditions. This puts Coricraft, Dial-a-Bed, The Bed Store, and
Volpes under TFG’s umbrella.
In its agreement with the Competition
Commission, TFG committed to opening a minimum of 35 new stores within three
years under the four Tapestry brands.
“We expect to comfortably
overshoot this target as we bring TFG’s scale and resources to bear on growing
the Tapestry businesses, and we have already identified the need for an
additional 17 stores for Volpes alone,” said Shani Naidoo, TFG group
director for its homeware division, in a statement on Monday.
Growing its furniture and homeware
division also includes substituting products that are currently imported with
locally made goods, according to TFG. This coincides with TFG’s move to locally
sourced apparel in line with its participation in the Retail-Clothing, Textile,
Footwear & Leather (R-CTFL) Master Plan, developed to revitalise South
Africa’s manufacturing industry after it was decimated by cheap Chinese imports.
See also | Pick n Pay Clothing aims for 60% local by 2028 – years of cheap Chinese imports make that tough
“As with the local manufacture of
apparel, we expect to realise similar commercial benefits from local production
of homeware such as sofas, linen and beds, including improved cash flow and
reduced inventory holding requirements, while avoiding global supply chain
disruptions and elevated freight costs,” said TFG CEO Anthony Thunström.
TFG, which already claims to source
73% of its apparel locally, is also looking to invest in the three factories
which serve the Tapestry brands.
The group cited the example of local
bedding, duvet and pillows brand Granny Goose and its associated manufacturer
Cotton Traders, which TFG bought in 2021. The group says it has grown
employment at Cotton Traders by 20% in less than a year and is planning a R20
million expansion of the factory, which is currently running at full capacity.
“By expanding the same vertical
integration model which has been so successful in our apparel business to our
home division, TFG is well set following the Tapestry acquisition to
reindustrialise the homeware manufacturing sector in South Africa and grow
local skills and employment,” added Thunström.
Expanding on the plans to grow its
apparel business, as an example set for its homeware brands, TFG says it’s
expecting to double its own local, quick-response clothing production to 31
million units by 2026.
“For each one million units of
quick response apparel, we need two more MBUs [manufacturing business units],
each with approximately 200 employees, producing an average of 4,200 units a
day for 247 days a year,” said TFG’s Merchandise and Supply Chain MD,
“Ultimately, we need the
equivalent of 30 MBUs to achieve the FY26 local manufacture target of 31
million units. This will generate more than 1,820 new employment opportunities
in our own factories and another 4,190 in those of our strategic suppliers, for
a total of more than 6,000 new employment opportunities in clothing manufacture
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