Kings and Tapi head Interiors Monthly Awards 2017 flooring winners
Nottingham flooring retailer Kings and Tapi have been named as the country’s best flooring retailers in the Interiors Monthly Awards 2017, selected by the magazine’s readers.
Kings was named as Best Furniture Retailer in the one to three store category and Tapi in the four plus category. Made.com was voted Best Online Retailer.
Founded in 1908 Kings remains family owned and has been long established as one of leading carpet and furniture retailers in the East Midlands, offering the largest selection of quality carpets in Nottingham.
Kings operates from three individual branches in the North-East, South and West of Nottingham, dealing with all the major brands in the carpet industry.
Thanks to its West Bridgford warehouse it is able to bulk buy carpet, underlays and accessories and pass on savings to its customers.
Beeston is its furniture store, with displays reflecting its proximity to Long Eaton with suppliers such as Duresta, Parker & Farr, Wade Upholstery, David Gundry and John Sankey.
‘We have enjoyed a rapid expansion programme opening our first store in May 2015 to a current portfolio of more than 80 stores, supported by 34 mobile showrooms and an inspirational website,’ says Martin Harris, Tapi chief executive.
‘Tapi measures success as any other retailer and in this regard, we are delivering double digit like-for-like percentage sales growth alongside significant enhancement of our gross margin as our buying power increases and our range broadens.
‘However our most important performance indicator remains customer satisfaction. Our dedication to placing our customers and their homes at the heart of our business, has earned us a 5 star rating of excellence on Trust Pilot and 96% of our customers would recommend us to their friends and family. In addition to providing outstanding customer service in a refreshing shopping environment, we are committed to delivering a strong value offer and are delighted that 97% of our customers find us to be great value.’
Li Ning, made.com chief executive founded the retailer in 2010 after selling his previous furniture etailer MyFab.
It now employs 300 people, has around £100m of sales, operates across Europe, and is constantly looking for new markets.
‘Our company culture is European but the next step is going global. There’s still a lot of opportunity out there because the Internet has lowered costs. China is where my heart is and I go often. We employ 40 people in Shanghai,’ he told China Daily.
Products are sourced from China, India and Europe and are made to order. He says older people will physically go shopping while younger people will research and buy online and go to the shops perhaps only to check on an item, or for entertainment. ‘This behavior will grow and there will be great opportunities for digital brands.’
‘My team says I can be pretty hard to work with because I have extreme requirements for detail,’ he says. ‘The last 10% makes the difference between good and perfect.’ He recently announced he would take on a more advisory role at the company.
Other winners were:
Best UK Flooring Manufacturer: Furlong Flooring;
Best Overseas Flooring Manufacturer: Balta Broadloom;
Best Flooring Buying Group: Metro Group;
Best Carpet Manufacturer: Cormar Carpets;
Best Rug Supplier: Think Rugs;
Best Laminate Manufacturer: Quick-Step;
Best Solid/Engineered Wood Manufacturer: Woodpecker Flooring;
Best Underlay Manufacturer: Interfloor;
Best Vinyl Manufacturer: IVC Group;
Best LVT Supplier: Karndean Designflooring;
Best Flooring Accessory Supplier: QA Flooring Solutions;
Best Flooring Wholesaler: Florco;
Best Fabric/Soft Furnishings Manufacturer: Sanderson;
Best Customer Service (Flooring): Associated Weavers;
Best Business Support (Flooring): SMG;
Best Marketing Support (Flooring): Flooring One;
Best Software Supplier: Retailsystem.com;
Best Finance Provider: Hitachi Capital;
Best Supply Chain/Logistics Company: ArrowXL;
Best Flooring Exhibition: The Flooring Show;
Best Website (Flooring): Moduleo;
Innovation of the Year (Flooring): Ball & Young, Astro Cushion;
Product of the Year (Flooring): Axminster Carpets, Hazy Days;
Innovation in Flooring: Crown Floors, Deacon Jones by Crown Floors;
Flooring Brand 2017: Brintons;
Sustainability (Flooring): Campaign for Wool
Outstanding Performance (Flooring): Victoria.