Ashley Furniture opens second retail store in China, identifying a need for compact furniture adapted to needs of Chinese market

LOS ANGELES , January 22, 2014 () – Ashley Furniture Industries Inc. opened its second retail location in China in December, Bloomberg Business Week reported on Jan. 14.

The multibillion dollar family owned company, headquartered in Wisconsin, first established a presence in China when it outsourced manufacturing there to save labor costs about 20 years ago. Now it is learning how to adapt its product lines for the Chinese market, amid a rapidly expanding home furnishings market being fuelled by mass urbanization.

Apartments in China typically have small dining rooms, for example, so modifications include smaller dining tables.

Paul Dotta, Ashley Furniture’s VP of international business, who lives in Shenzhen, said the company would also have to alter its marketing strategies to meet the needs of a Chinese middle class he noted was “very different” from its equivalent in the U.S.

The primary source of this article is Bloomberg Business Week, New York, on Jan. 14, 2014.

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