HCM CITY — Furniture companies are expanding their chains by opening new stores in the country, even though the domestic furniture market's sales growth is expected to fall 15-20 per cent for 2012 compared to last year.
Two big furniture companies in HCM City, for example, have opened two stores this month despite the recession.
In addition, Index Living Mall, a one-stop shopping mall selling Thai furniture and home appliances, will open three more branches in HCM City, following the successful opening of its first 7,000-sq.m store in District 4.
"In the first two quarters of this year, we reached our growth targets. In the last month of the second quarter, which was the difficult time for the furniture market, we also exceeded the target," Nguyen Viet Linh, the company's marketing director told Viet Nam News.
With this growth, the company plans to open 10,000 sq.m-stores in the northern and central regions, and is currently seeking a land lot to open one store.
Other companies such as Chi Lai and Klassy also have plans to expand.
Late last week, Klassy Company opened a store in District 1 in HCM City, bringing its total number of stores to five. Covering an area of 2,000sq.m, the store displays furniture imported from Italy, Hong Kong and England.
Although the market faces difficulties, Klassy decided to expand its business to take advantage of opportunities before the economic recovery, Le Thi Thanh Hai, general director of Klassy was quoted as saying in Saigon Times.
Hai said that to maintain the company's growth of 40 per cent per year, the company would open a 5,000-sq.m store in Dong Da District in Ha Noi this year. In 2013, more stores will open in Ha Noi, Da Nang and Hai Phong.
All of these companies are following the same trend of opening large stores.
"Our aim is to open large stores so that our customers can choose from many kinds of home appliances and furniture," said Linh.
Le Duc Nghia, director of An Cuong Trade Company Ltd, said that customers had become more fastidious about their purchases.
Because customers want to see and sample before making a final decision, it is important to have impressive store displays, Nghia said.
Big stores save customers time because they can buy many things in one place, he added.
Although companies might face losses in the beginning, the trend of opening big stores will continue, according to Nghia.
Hai of Klassy Company said that opening stores was easier now because good sites were available for cheaper prices.
To successfully develop their chains, the companies have created clear business plans and set up strong design and marketing teams to provide full services to customers. — VNS